Situated between San Lorenzo on one side, and the Macarena on the other, is Seville’s largest open space, the Alameda de Hercules. A long tree-lined promenade with pairs of Roman columns at either end, it is one of the city’s most popular nightspots, with a great number and variety of bars and restaurants. It was built in 1574 on marshland left behind by the damming of a branch of the Guadalquivir in 1383, and remained liable to flooding into relatively modern times. Despite this, it was a fashionable place to see and be seen, and reached a peak of popularity in the 19th century.
In the 20th it went into decline, especially after the civil war, and by the latter part of the century had acquired a reputation as a red light district of drugs and prostitutes. Recently, however, the area has been cleaned up, and between 2006 and 2008, the Alameda itself was paved over and generally refurbished.
As a consequence there is even more nightlife here than ever, attracting particularly the more bohemian elements, but there is an upmarket element too, with the cultural centre the Casa de las Sirenas, the Alameda Theatre, and some quality hotels and restaurants.