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Jewellery by Artists: From Picasso to Koons, an exhibition organised by the culture and art portal

Destinations · Europe · latvia · Riga · Museums and galleries · Riga’s creative quarters

The republic of Peace Street

Author: Anothertravelguide.com0 COMMENTS

The republic of Peace Street

A couple of years ago, unexpectedly and spontaneously, and in the darkest depths of the economic crisis, Miera iela - Peace Street - suddenly made its mark on Riga's creative map. The dreary, dusty storefronts along the street were shuttered, and those who had been silenced in the fat years, as the bubble is known in Latvia, expressed themselves in the lean years by making their dreams a reality - opening little shops and cafés. That's why everything here has personality. First came the vintage clothing stores and the Black Beak - Melnais knābis - a hair salon like no other. Then everything else sprang up like mushrooms after a rain. Riga residents always had a soft spot for this quarter because of the aroma of chocolate emanating from the Laima chocolate factory, a scent many associate with childhood.
Nowadays the aroma is also that of Mierā, a café offering marzipan and raspberry cake, not to mention cheesecake, all freshly baked. Then there's the ambience of TAKA, which offers fresh vegetarian meals and poetry. DAD café serves up hot open-faced sandwiches and stuffed pancakes. One has an eclectic interior with appealingly textured walls, the other the charm of Provence. The third has a crazy cocktail of colors and black ceilings. All three serve music and art.
The teashop Illuseum is a place to escape hectic urban life - it's a temple for tea and reading. Nothing within is as it seems - parts of the interior are only visible with 3D glasses.
The offerings in the shops are also unusual, starting with things like a 1970s chair redressed in fabric from Brazilian coffee sacks at ZeStore and ending with the strange and alluring forms glass can take at Buteljons, where old glass is given new life.
At 20. gadsimts - The Twentieth Century - there are authentic art deco mirrors from France, mirrors made in Riga in 1956, table lamps from the 1970s and other retro treasures. Mājas svētība is a popular address, too - an exchange for houseplants. People whose plants have gotten too big for their apartments can find smaller ones, and the other way around. You never know what you'll find here, whether that's a grandmother's amaryllis or something nameless and exotic. You can also get wonderful Kafka coffee and admire the cozy café corner's design, with its stylish concrete bar, designed and made by the proprietors, and the stunning jewel-orchid painted on the wall.
There are occasional street festivals when Peace Street can get pleasantly boisterous. Vintage wares are blended with film screenings, music, eco-design, creative craziness, intriguing performances and the pervasive aroma of chocolate.



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