Colonia Doctores is an official neighbourhood just southwest of the historic centre of Mexico City. The area has a reputation for its high crime rate. It was ranked in the top 25 neighbourhoods of the city for percentage of residents incarcerated and fourth in the top ten most dangerous neighbourhoods, based on number of reported crimes per capita.
The area is also known for its large numbers of cantinas, cabarets and “hotels de paso” (hotels with hourly rates). Colonia Doctores used to be home to many “pulquerías”, bars or cantinas that serve pulque (an alcoholic beverage made from the fermented sap of the maguey plant. It is traditional to central Mexico, where it has been produced for millennia) to a mostly lower-class clientele. In Mexico City, these establishments have been heavily regulated because they were often seen as centres of vice.
Most of the crime associated with this area is related to car theft and chop shops (businesses which disassemble stolen automobiles for the purpose of selling them as parts). For example, a Hummer stolen from El Paso, Texas, was recently found intact on the streets here.
The neighbourhood was planned by Francisco Lascuráin in 1889, in an area called “La Indianilla” but he never followed through with his plans to develop the area. In 1895, The Mexican City Propriety Syndicate Limited proposed the plan to lay out the neighbourhood anew, gaining approval of the Mexico City.
Originally the Colonia was called “Hidalgo” but, as almost all of the streets here are named after famous physicians, the area became known as “Doctores,” leading to its current official name.