During the late riots, people panicked. E-readers made books unnecessary. We all thought we were only a few decades away from downloading matrix-style works straight to our brains. The bankruptcy and closure of Borders and Waldenbooks in 201
Cafebreria El Péndulo. Mexico City. This bookstore chain has multiple locations across Mexico. They all contain lush plants, natural wood surfaces and lots of natural light. Live music, readings and comedy take place in the shops. Cafes, restaurants and bars are connected to the shops, so you can spend the whole afternoon here. In a shop, Bukowski's Piano Bar, dedicated to "all alcohol-inspired writers", offers cocktails named after well-known authors. ( x )
Shakespeare and Co. Paris. George Whitman opened this bookstore in 1951 and christened it with the motto "Do not be inhospitable to strangers so that they are not angels in disguise". He considered himself a kind of tumbleweed that rolled from place to place in the world without roots. True to Whitman's motto and lifestyle, this bookstore offers a tumbleweed program in which writers and artists can stay in the bookstore in exchange for work, read a book every day, and write an autobiography. ( x )
Barts Books. Ojai. Could something be more SoCal than an open air bookstore? The store opened accidentally when Richard Bartinsdale expanded his book collection beyond the walls of his house. He left books on shelves on the sidewalk with coffee pots to pay for the honor system. The store has taken over its former home with first editions, art books and rare titles, but the sidewalk shelves with $ 0.35 books and coffee cans remain for payment. ( x )
El Ateneo Grand Splendid. Buenos Aires. It can be difficult to find a use for old theater buildings. Without a theater group, they sometimes become movie houses or upscale condominiums, in the worst case they are torn down. In Buenos Aires, El Ateneo Theater became a cinema before it became a huge and very cool bookstore. The theater boxes remain a cozy place to relax with a coffee from the café and immerse yourself in a good book. ( x )
Libreria Acqua Alta. Venice. Is there anything more Venetian than gondola boats? No, except for occasional floods. That's why this cool bookstore shows its Italian and American books in boats. Anything that does not fit in the gondolas is stored in bathtubs, canoes and chairs to protect them from the rise of water. The bookstore, which opened in 2003, even thinks differently about books and uses old encyclopedias as stairs. ( x )
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