The King of the Flea markets.
Once upon a time, in 1917, there was a building with large storehouses that housed a tannery and a shoe factory in the popular and well-known Matadero Franklin neighborhood.
In the early 1980s, the factory ceased production and open-air swap meets were established around the building because of a strong economic crisis that broke out in Chile.
Chilean society at the time was facing a changing and uncertain scenario, which was marked by the rule of the military government and the 1982 economic crisis, which brought high unemployment rates. This political-economic and social context meant that the street markets grew more and more.
At that time, the factory was auctioned off and the new owners of the building decided to open its doors to street commerce, transforming it into a place that received hundreds of sellers, artisans, junk dealers: entrepreneurs of the twentieth century, becoming the first flea market that was installed in the neighborhood.
At first, and for a long time, merchants and entrepreneurs installed their products on the ground, which were mainly kick-knacks, antiques, and restorations. The warehouse gave shelter to the sellers from the heat and rain and provided a safe place to store their merchandise.
Its aisles were filled with life and color, marking the beginning not only of a special decade in our country, but also of a historic, iconic, and unique place. The Persa has been characterized –until today- by the fact that it is possible to find everything in it: antiques, lamps, furniture, old magazines, stamps, unimaginable books, and a myriad of collectible items.
An open door to the past, a place where time stands still, a chest full of relics and treasures from another time, which is why visitors have called it "the antique dealers’ warehouse."
Over the years, other flea markets (aka Persas) started in the neighborhood, following the model established by the Victor Manuel flea market, whose essence has been maintained, and at the same time, renewed. Its popularity has grown, and the name "Persa Victor Manuel" always resonates as a magical and legendary space. Its doors have also opened to the art world, being the first flea market to incorporate cultural activities and urban art to its activities.
The consequent recovery and revitalization of its spaces has also given way to strengthen this place, full of warehouses, as a meeting point, an encounter point full of artistic expressions that has made Persa Victor Manuel an unmissable weekend destination whose particularities remain intact.
The storekeepers are the soul of this place, they have been participants and accomplices in the growth of this unique space. The track record, the impulse and the recognition of the Victor Manuel flea market have turned this great warehouse into a model to follow, standing out among the hundreds of flea markets existing in our country and in the world.
The Victor Manuel flea market has been raising its voice, resounding in the streets, in the press, in the neighborhood, for its track record, for being the first Chilean flea market, for its colors, for its people, crowning itself as the king of the flea-market culture that transcends eras and continues building stories that will mark us forever.