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Fodor's See It Mexico, 3rd Edition
Museo Soumaya Review
One of Mexico City's newest architectural icons opened in 2011 and has one of the most valuable collections of art in Latin America. The largest number of works on display at this, the museum's Plaza Carso branch on the edges of the popular Polanco neighborhood, come from the eclectic, 66,000-piece collection of billionaire philanthropist Carlos Slim Helu (at this writing the richest man in the world), which includes many sculptures from Rodin and Dalí, the largest such collection in Latin America, as well as numerous paintings from Old Masters to Modernists and impressionists, including works from the circle of Leonardo da Vinci, El Greco, Tintoretto, Monet, and Picasso. But there are also many Mexico artists represented, including Diego Riviera. There's even an extensive coin collection. Each floor of the museum has a different layout, and you walk along curving, ramps to get from one floor to the other, not unlike the Guggenheim Museum in New York City. Interestingly, some paintings are hung so that they can be viewed from both front and back. Designed by the Mexican architect Fernando Romero, Slim's son-in-law, the museum building, which cost some $70 million, has a shape some have likened to a silver cloud, is covered by thousands of hexagonal almuminum tiles. The museum is most easily reached by taxi.
Plaza Loreto Branch. The original Plaza Loreto branch still houses four exhibition rooms inside a colonial villa–like building. But it's in the out-of-the-way San Angel neighborhood and is by no means a must-see. Skip it in favor of the breathtaking, modern Plaza Carso branch in the more accessible Polanco district. Av. Revolución y Rio Magdalena, Eje 10 Sur, Tizapán, Col. San Angel. Free. Tues.–Sun. 10:30–6:30 (until 8 on Sat.).
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