La Mariscal district has been undergoing a great revival in the last years. It lies in the northern part of the city, between the Old Town and the airport. Its limits are the Avenida 12 de Octobre to the east, Avenida Patria to the south, Avenida 10 de Agosto to the west and Avenida Orellana to the north. The district is where the greatest concentration of tourist facilities in the city is located. From tour operators to internet cafés to hotels, you’ll find it all in La Mariscal.
Historically, the district was where wealthy families built mansions as the city expanded to the north in the 1940s to 1960s. Many of these have been turned into hostals and hotels over the last decade or two, making for some unique places to stay. The Mariscal’s rise as a centre of tourism began in the 1980s, consolidated in the 1990s and has established itself fully by the new century.
Very few capitals in Latin America boast such a concentrated tourist district. It makes everything very easy. If you’re staying in the district, everything’s close-by: the Museo del Banco Central and the Museo Mindalae; the crafts market and dozens of souvenir stores and art galleries; scores of operators and agents selling tours to every corner of the country, including last-minute Galápagos tours; internet cafés and call centres for keeping in touch; bookshops for browsing; as well as laundries, photo labs and mountaineering and travel-gear shops for practicalities.
In the last few years, the Mariscal has become an ever-stronger magnet for young Quiteños and the result has been dramatic: dozens of restaurants, bars and clubs have opened their doors. The nucleus of this phenomenon has been the Plaza Foch – since it lies at the crossroads of Calle Mariscal Foch and Calle Reina Victoria. This Municipality-led regeneration has been a roaring success, connecting with the nearby calles Calama, Juan León Mera, Pinto and Diego de Almagro to make a fun, dynamic and entertaining district for foreigners and locals alike.