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What Local Hispanics Love Most about San Diego

Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month. We thought we asked the locals what they love about this city.

 

“The proximity to so many places—beaches, mountains, Los Angeles,” says 36-year-old Hector Gastelum from Eastlake. That, and being so close to Mexico, although we agree we need a shorter border wait. That doesn’t stop Tony Barragan, 44, from Chula Vista from enjoying the best of both worlds in one day: “On a typical Saturday, I end my day having a glass of wine in Valle de Guadalupe with a fantastic view.” Thirty-seven-year-old Alex Montoya from Paradise Hills says he doesn’t need to drive 80 miles to feel like he is in Mexico: “Las Cuatro Milpas has the most authentic food in Barrio Logan.” It’s impossible not to run into the richness of multiple cultures. “On a Saturday morning you can go to Aquí es Texcoco for the best birria,” says 39-year-old Nora Vargas from Chula Vista, but if you could start your day with the taste from the two countries, 25-year-old Melyna Martinez from Mission Valley would be a happy gal: “The one thing we need in San Diego is a traditional panaderia next to every Starbucks!” As for music, “I wish we had a Mariachi music venue in the Gaslamp” says 49-year-old Lidia S. Martinez from San Diego. If you could have a cafe de la olla at 3 a.m., even better. “We need an area where restaurants and coffee shops stay open all night long,” says Maria Villalobos, 51, from Coronado.

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