Friday, August 18, 2006

Eyesore Central

In Caracas, there are horrendous buildings from the sixties and seventies, and some interestingly monstruous buildings from the fifties, all in dramatic decay. As my gracious hostess points out, Caracas is 400 years old but it looks like it's only 60.
The main plaza downtown is a tiny enclave of wedding cake neoclassical buildings surrounded on all sides by unmitigated hideousness. To be fair, some of the red brick wealthy condos are actually very interesting architecturally, but Caracas made me think of Mexico City, with its wide boulevards and imposing colonial buildings, in a different light.

In New York our buildings have important-sounding names, such as The Beresford, The Dakota, The Brevoort. Here there are some classy ones like The Humboldt, or The Atlantic, but they sit right next to buildings with names like, I kid you not, "Don Pedro", "Lassie" and my favorite: "For You".

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