Coronavirus shuts down Mexico's most luxurious avenue
Named after Tomás Masaryk, founder of the Republic of Czechoslovakia, the street is located in the exclusive neighborhood of Polanco and is already showing the ravages of the situation with "For Rent" signs on several stores that have closed permanently.
Due to its location and capital gain, Presidente Masaryk is one of the most expensive areas in the country to live and own a business. For example, the rent for a three-story commercial space costs up to 400,000 pesos per month (about 20,300 dollars). Others are priced directly in foreign currency, such as a three-story space formerly occupied by a luxury boutique, which is offered at $40,000 per month.
Like other industries, the luxury sector has been hit by the new coronavirus, the outbreak of which forced the Mexico City government to suspend non-essential activities for the second time on December 18.
Due to its location and value, Presidente Masaryk is one of the most luxurious areas to live and own a business in the country.
Some Masaryk stores have their windows boarded up for security; others offer product sales by telephone and home delivery. Were it not for the restaurants that just Monday reopened on outdoor terraces, President Masaryk would be even more deserted.
A report by the consulting firm Bain & Company noted late last year that the luxury products and experiences industry had its first contraction in 2020 since 2009.
Analysts consulted monthly by the Bank of Mexico (central) estimate that the Mexican economy, the second-largest in Latin America after Brazil, contracted 9% in 2020 due to the impact of the pandemic.
Mexico, with 128 million inhabitants, is the fourth country most affected by covid-19 in absolute numbers, although it ranks 20th in deaths per 100,000 inhabitants, according to an AFP database fed with official figures.