Saturday, November 25, 2006

The Glorieta

I've been wanting to check out what is happening at the Glorieta at the end of Ancha de San Antonio so this morning I walked in that direction instead of toward the Centro. It is changing and changing fast. Last year the city redid the Glorieta with new paving and in the center added a statute of El Pipila, a fountain and landscaping. That was all just a prelude for what was coming. First it was the Pemex Station on the right hand side of this image. Both of the buildings on the right side are new but I'm not sure what the most left-handed one is but the other is for TelCel.

Before all this happened about the only thing at the Glorieta was a Pollo Feliz Restaurant which is a Mexican chain that is expanding not just in Mexico but also in the USA. The restaurant on the Glorieta was the largest Pollo Feliz in town but it was in an older building without any pizazz. Not the case now. They have opened a new Restaurant across the street but still on the Glorieta in the McDonald's style with a huge playground inside but overall the building is bigger than any McDonald's that I know of and they are building another building for some purpose on the property also. When it opened it caused a traffic jam for several days because everyone wanted to go and while it has a large parking lot it wasn't big enough for the opening.

This is the take out window. This Pollo Feliz is more expensive than the other Pollo Feliz stores in town. And it is about double the price of most of the small rotisserie chicken places in town. But regardless, I think it is the best roasted/grilled chicken around. And for all the business it does, I guess the Mexicans feel that way too. In case you can't read the menu, a whole chicken with salad, grilled onions and Jalapenos, tortillas and salsa cost 99 pesos. Yes, it is decorated for Christmas. Now before you start to talk about the Americanization of Mexico, just remember that this is a Mexican Company. On the other corner of the Glorieta a new Mega Comercial Mexicana store (think of a Super WalMart in the USA) is near to opening. This morning the parking lot was set up with a lot of tables and chairs outside. I don't know if it was for some ceremony or maybe more likely some kind of training for the employees. It looks like the finishing touches and signage is being installed to the outside and while I didn't get close enough to look in a door, from what I could see it looks like shelving and such is being set up inside. Rumor has it that the store will open in December.

One of the things that has been an aggravation to people who go up to the Gigante store at the Caracol is that they started charging for parking even when you buy something in the store. Well, the signs and gates are up for collecting parking fees here at this new store also. The cost is 8 pesos per hour but you get two free hours if you shop at the Mega store. Lose your ticket and you will pay 100 pesos to get your car out of the lot.

On two sides of the store are places for buses to pull in and pickup or let passengers off the bus. The parking lot is also big so Comercial Mexicana is projecting lots of traffic in this store. This is interesting because we have only had one so called super market, Gigante. I'm not sure we have even been in Gigante this year. To me it didn't seem clean and it smelled bad. The produce wasn't any different than I could get in the Ramirez Mercado so there was just no reason to get the car out or take a taxi or bus to go there. Well, Gigante is closing that store and building a new "Super" store across the street from the old location. It will be in competition with Mega Comercial Mexicana.

You just wonder how these new stores will affect San Miguel. I don't know what impact it will have in the San Juan de Dios and Ramirez Mercados but I do think that the Gringos will definitely give the new grocery stores a try rather than having to drive to Ceyala or Queretaro to go to WalMart or Costco or Sam's.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow your little town is getting big city treatments! We have only Chedraui (much like Gigante) in Coatepec. No large grocery store in Xico or Teocelo. Nothing like your civilization in SMA!

We can drive to Xalapa where all you write about is there and more although I have yet to see charges for parking in any of the big box store lots.

Saturday our neighbors and we shopped in the downtown area of Xalapa - what a mass of humanity and there is nothing that can't be had in that town.

It is always nice to get back to our little town spots 12 miles or more from Xalapa.

Juan Calypso