Going to Malaga and not visiting Calle Larios is like going to New York and not walking along Fifth Avenue. The popular street in the capital of the Costa del Sol contains all manner of traditional businesses and the world's main fashion brands, making it the shopping epicentre of Malaga.
The street, which although referred to as “Larios” by the people of Malaga is actually called “Marqués de Larios”, named after the Larios family, and is located in the centre of Malaga (beside the Port of Malaga). The Larios family were one of the main drivers of the Malaga economy in the 19th century. Prior to which the province of Malaga had a fishing and agriculture-based economy. The street, in addition to being one of the most important shopping streets in Spain, contains very attractive architecture and was pedestrianised in 2003.
Calle Larios, from one shop to the next
If you ask a Malaga native what to do on Calle Larios you will be swiftly sent to the have a coffee at the Café Central (at the end of Calle Larios, in the Plaza de la Constitución) or a ice cream at Casa Mira, two classics in the city. If you hear a Malaga native asking for “una nube” [a cloud] or “un sombra” [a shadow], then they are asking for a coffee. José Prado Crespo, founder of the mythical Café Central, is the author of this curious nomenclature for types of coffee. Inside the cafeteria its wall contains a large illustrated azulejo [ceramic tiles] with guidance on how to order.
Calle Larios has places where you can have lunch and tea and, just a few steps away is the dazzling Atarazanas Market. The provisions market in the centre of Malaga is worth a visit not just because of is beautiful building, which dates to the 14th century, but also due to the variety of products on offer.
After lunch and tea you are all ready to go shopping on Calle Larios! The first thing you will encounter are lots of clothes shops. From youth to fashion brands, through Malaga businesses, Calle Larios serves all types of public.
You will also encounter many shoe shops such as the classic Nicolás, and large jewellery chains such as Swarovski. A few steps away from Larios you can find Malaga jewellers such as Joyería Montañez (C/ Nueva 28), with over 100 years of history, or Joyería Puerta Nueva (C/ Compañía 33).
In addition, perfumeries or large cosmetics companies offer their products to Calle Larios visitors. Notable amongst the perfumeries is Primor, a well-loved family business founded in 1953 that has seen spectacular growth, with subsidiaries in nearly every city in Spain.
In short, Malaga's Fifth Avenue is a street that has maintained the charm of its 19th century buildings without renouncing the modernity of its foreign brands and, above all, the growth of its local businesses.