Colonia Roma is one of Mexico City’s most famous neighborhoods. It has a history as old as the city itself, a great food and bar scene, and good access to public transport. But what is it like to live in Roma? How do you know it’s the right neighborhood for you? These can be hard questions to answer, but, luckily, your friends here at FlatFit have put together a great guide to this corner of Cuauhtemoc. Here are the pros and cons of living in Roma, Mexico City.
Let’s start with some of the pros of living in Roma. The Roma neighborhood has long been understood as one of the more culturally refined parts of Mexico City, drawing a young, edgy generation of artists, writers, and hipsters from all over the world. You can find elegant coffee shops, theaters and art galleries, and funky secondhand shops everywhere, as well as a number of historic museums and libraries. If you’re looking for a neighborhood that’s artsy, but down-to-earth, Colonia Roma is definitely worth a glance.
It’s hard to argue with Roma’s architecture. This neighborhood is filled with a mixture of colonial, neo-colonial, and art deco styles, all flowing together and growing into each other in a way that is both beautiful and mesmerizing. Its buildings tend to be brightly colored and lovingly maintained, and there are lots of wide sidewalks and shady trees. These trees are a rare breath of relief in Mexico City, where narrow alleys and lack of plant life can make the city feel choked and sweltering, especially in the summer. Living in Roma is an architectural experience, and that definitely counts as a pro.
Things to Do
Merdado de Medellin
It’s also worth noting that you’re never going to be bored in Roma. There’s plenty of things to do whether you like shopping, restaurants, or movies. Check out the Palacio de Hierro or Woolworth department stores, or even stroll through the Mercado Medellin in the south for products from Cuba, Colombia, or Venezuela. For eateries, Roma has just about everything, from delicious, cheap Mexican fare at Cabrera 7 to international fine dining at Blanco Colima. There are also lots of late-night bars and clubs if you’re looking for the fiesta.
Public transit might not be the most glamorous pro of living in Roma, but it’s absolutely worth mentioning. The public bus, Metrobus, pesero, trolley, and the metro all pass through this neighborhood, giving you access to the rest of the city without ever needing to step in your car. Several of Mexico city’s main fairways also run through the neighborhood, and there are plenty of Ubers if you ever need a car to yourself.
Higher than Average Rent
On the bright side, Roma isn’t the most expensive neighborhood in Mexico City (that prize goes to Polanco). But, it’s still pricier than average, with rent running at $8000 or more for a mid-sized apartment. You can save some money you’re willing to share your space with roommates or settle for a lower-quality apartment, but in general, you can find cheaper places in less-popular neighborhoods.
Like any other city its size, Mexico City has some neighborhoods that can be a little dangerous, but you don’t need to worry too much about your safety when living in Roma. Actual violence is rare here, and lots of families make Roma their home; you could do a lot worse in terms of neighborhood safety. That said, Roma isn’t perfect and has a higher than average rate pickpocketing incidents and small-scale muggings, especially late at night near the clubbier parts of the neighborhood.
Colonia Roma has been a popular neighborhood for a long time, from its origin as a colonial outpost to its post-2000s regentrification. Between this popularity, and its wide, shady streets, Roma’s apartments tend to be a little smaller on average than in some other Mexico City neighborhoods. A lot of its buildings have been divided into smaller apartments than they were originally designed for. If having lots of living space is something that’s important to you, Roma might not be the place to go.
Those are the pros and cons of living in Roma! Like every neighborhood in every city on the planet, there’s some good and some bad. It’s all about deciding what’s important to you. Are you okay paying a slightly higher rent to live in a vibrant community like Roma? Let us know what you love about Roma on Instagram, using the hashtag #RentFlatFit.
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