For our time in Lima my brother and I stayed in Barranco, just south of Miraflores along the coast. I fell in love with the neighborhood. Beautiful and clean with an artsy character not found in Miraflores. We were offered weed early and often. Barranco has Lima’s best murals (though put to shame by Bogota).
SALVEMOS BARRANCO! (Save Barranco) is movement for the neighborhood to keep Barranco as it was. The city closed a major street which resulted in an exponential increase of traffic through Barranco. The smog, noise, and traffic annoy the locals so Barranco must be “saved.” Posters are everywhere. I found a flyer for an awareness march. We saw people with Save Barranco! T-shirts and megaphones trying to drum up protesters.
Piero Laos Vanini manages the place. Great guy, always joking. After Ryan and I got in our scrap we came back and drank beer on the roof until 6 am. Piero was in a tent nearby and probably didn’t sleep all night long. I apologized the next day. He laughed it off without a trace of bitterness.
Piero has an artist friend decorate the hostel with paintings. On the roof is a patio with kitchen and bar where you can smell the sea. Piero employs his hot cousin, who recommended La Noche and Bartini.
Kaminu is located on Bajada de Baños, a sidewalk leading from Barranco’s main plaza to the beach. Taxi drivers may have trouble finding it. Just tell him to drop you off at Puente de los Suspiros and follow the cobblestone sidewalk down.
Galería Lucía de la Puente
Walking aimlessly through Barranco we found the Lucía de la Puente art gallery, which features work from Peru’s best artists. There were hundreds of paintings. We didn’t have time to see them all. A must-see for art lovers in Lima.
Pedro de Osma Museum
At the Pedro de Osma Museum I liked the old school religious paintings. When Spain colonized South America they wanted to convert them to Catholicism. Since the indigenous couldn’t speak Spanish, the Church communicated stories through art. Their strategy worked, as Peru is now more Catholic than Spain. In fact, Latin America’s more Catholic than Italy itself.
There are three buildings of artifacts and paintings surrounding a beautiful garden.
Help Retro Bar
Our last night in Lima my brother, Diego, and I went to Help Retro Bar, or Del Carajo, on Av. Catalino Miranda 158. We arrived around 9 pm and drank with the promoter, Emil. Arriving so early we took advantage of the 5 soles / 20 oz. beers.
The place is a huge, open space and live music venue. There’s a truck parked inside with a table in the bed. Funky paintings and retro pictures decorate the walls. In back there are two TV’s set up with Super Nintendo and Sega. A local painter was roped off in the VIP section, working on a canvas. To his right was a blank canvas and with paints and brushes for anybody to use. I wrote “STL loves Barranco” so high on the canvas that none of the Peruvians would be able to obscure it.
The bar eventually filled up with no less than 400 beautiful young people. We had a blast.
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