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The Coolest Neighborhoods to Live and Launch Startups In Latin America

The Coolest Neighborhoods to Live and Launch Startups In Latin America

Posted by Clarisa Herrera on August 24, 2015

Latin America is witnessing a startup boom. Within the framework of the multiple initiatives that are fostering enterprising activities in every country, along with low barriers to establish technological businesses, the movement of entrepreneurs in the region is constant.

A survey conducted within the Latin American enterprising community gave us an opportunity to identify some of the coolest and trendiest areas in the Southern Cone for technological entrepreneurs to live in and work on their startups, as well as the elements that make them so attractive:

Palermo Soho (Buenos Aires, Argentina)

The traditional Palermo neighborhood features an area very coveted by both local and foreign entrepreneurs in Buenos Aires. Palermo Soho is a true bohemian oasis in the city, with low houses, trees, author design stores, bars and restaurants for all preferences, as well as the most bohemian and chic environment in the Argentinean capital city.

The area was once described as marginal, since it was only made up of warehouses, old houses and intellectuals, but it always stood out as a creative shelter. That creative energy has transcended to our days and can be felt in every street.

Why is it so attractive for entrepreneurs? It’s almost the official place where the city’s most innovative companies and startups are based, ranging from old refurbished mansions to multiple collaborative workspaces like Urban Station, Founders Palermo, ÁreaTres, among many others.

The area also gathers the main factors of the local ecosystem, such as Wayra or NXTP Labs, and it hosts most of the events aimed at the local tech enterprising community. The local restaurants, cafes and gastronomic premises are visited by entrepreneurs, investors and startup representatives who are always thinking about their ideas and the way they can carry them out.

El Chagualo (Medellin, Colombia)

The neighborhood, surrounded by Barranquilla and La Minorista streets and the easternmost bank of Medellin River and Carabobo Avenue, left behind the times when it was labeled as unsafe, with several warehouses and repair shops.

The construction of numerous buildings and apartments, business properties, warehouses and offices gave the area a new residential and urban look, which became an epicenter of science, culture and technology in the city.

According to a Territorial Organization Plan (TOP), the zone houses institutions related to those fields, such as the University of Antioquia, Park of Life, University Research Headquarters (SIU is the Spanish acronym) and Ruta N, the corporation created by the City Hall of Medellin, UNE and EPM that favor the economic evolution of the city by targeting science, technology and innovation businesses. The stage is completed with the Metroplús, Botanic Garden, Explore Park, Wishes Park and the planetarium.

Why does it attract entrepreneurs? Distrito Medellinnovation project is part of a strategy aimed at turning Medellin into the Capital City of Latin American Innovation in 2021. It’s all about a project of urban and economic transformation that tries to restructure the northern area of the city –which includes neighborhoods Chagualo, Jesus Nazareno, Sevilla and part of San Pedro – as a brand-new innovative cluster that gathers “entrepreneurs, companies and institutions so they can participate in convergent projects to improve the life quality of the inhabitants.”

Roma-Condesa Corridor (DF, Mexico)

Art Deco architecture, green spaces like Mexico Park and its European-styled fountains are complemented by cafes at Amsterdam Avenue and different design stores, malls, boutiques, art galleries or the gastronomic and night offers that characterize the zone.

Why does it attract entrepreneurs? Year 2000 marked the beginning of the creation of a technological entrepreneurs cluster made up of entertainment companies, software, gaming, etc., which represent the heart of the synergic and creative dynamics that prevails in the area.

The creation was spontaneous, but they are presently trying to capitalize the cluster, generate more synergies and attract investment, more talent and foreign currencies.

The area features such advantages as central location, affordable rent prices and creative atmosphere. It’s also the base of co-working space like iVO or Impact Hub and hosts such interesting events as BornGlobal or Networking Nights.

Providencia (Santiago de Chile, Chile)

In Santiago, to the east of La Plaza Italia, this neighborhood offers interesting gastronomic, commercial and night choices. The people can easily walk to the bank of Mapocho River and the most beautiful parks in town: Balmaceda and Uruguay.

These walks can be combined with visits to cafes, small stores, galleries, bookstores and malls that characterize the area or such remarkable places as the Sculptures Park or the Town Hall of Providencia.

Why should it attract entrepreneurs? The area puts together most of the enterprising activity of the city and well-assorted offer of co-working spaces, such as Start Up Chile and Conectas, Urban Station or Co Work.

The area is also home for initiatives like the Institute for Enterprising Development (where entrepreneurs are taught financial aspects), Emprende Providencia or Santiago Maker Space, among many others. 

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