Europe House opens its doors
By Antonio De Jesús Aguado
In 2012 it was announced that Casa de Europa en México (House of Europe in Mexico), located at San Francisco 25, would open in two years, but ahead of schedule it was officially opened on August 8.
In May 2011, during the administration of Luz María Núñez, plans for creating the Casa de Europa in San Miguel were announced. The project focuses on cultural exchanges and will present exhibitions, cultural programs and international fairs and conferences. In addition, the house functions as a business center to offer consulting to investors from the European Union. A nonprofit organization to manage it was formed, Fundación San Miguel A.C., currently headed by Fernando Balderas.
In June 2012, Héctor López Santillana, then the governor of Guanajuato, came to San Miguel to officially lease the building to the foundation for 99 years. At that time, Balderas commented that the house would be a place for artistic, cultural, educational and technological events. He also said that the house would include offices and lodging for European diplomats, along with a café and a library.
Although an art exhibit had already opened at the site, it was officially inaugurated on August 8, when the foundation signed an agreement with the local government to start working on projects with European countries. Balderas said that soon they will begin offering classes to teach the languages spoken in European countries, and in October the German ambassador to Mexico will visit San Miguel to discuss a major project. Balderas noted that this is the only such establishment in Latin America.
The art exhibit, which will remain open for some time, features posters from the collection of Martin Rossemberg, who donated to the house 1,000 posters with a value close to a million dollars.
Fernando Olivera, Guanajuato secretary of touristic development, attended the opening and said that the foundation will have full support from the state government to achieve the necessary exchanges between the state and European countries.
Mayor Mauricio Trejo remarked that there is already a close relationship between San Miguel and France, a country that will help promote San Miguel as a wine-producing area.