Eat Like a Local in the Hala Gwardii

Hala Gwardii has new life and I must admit I loved it on first sight. It has become a food market and food court with an organic food and plenty of restaurants and shops. It’s understandable that at first glance you could associate it with Hala Koszyki which recently celebrated it’s first anniversary. I was afraid Hala Gwardii would try to pursue a similar atmosphere and style. With all respect to Hala Koszyki, I`m very happy Hala Gwardii has its own style and character.

What I like most is the open air food market right next to it. When I want to show something authentically local to foreign tourists – this is the place. They are impressed with eclectic architecture of both market halls, both being built at the turn of 19th and 20th centuries, officially called the Hale Mirowskie (Mirowskie Halls). Combined with the Jewish Ghetto’s history and bullet holes after executions from the Warsaw Uprising, creates a fascinating experience.

The new Hala Gwardii is a perfect addition here. Usually I show this place near the end of my walks because we can rest, drink and eat here. When entering from the food market side you walk through a heavy stripped curtain made of transparent plastic, just like you would have walked into a meat store during communist times when I was a kid. First thing you notice is a boxing ring and pictures of boxers around the ceilings. After World War II this place housed a sporting club. In 1953 the tenth European Boxing Championship even took place here. In the future there will be boxing lessons and matches again here. Hala Gwardii is also very open to cultural and other local activities. There will be all kinds of events here, including concerts, workshops and exhibitions engaging the local community throughout the year.

Address: Hala Gwardii, Plac Żelaznej Bramy 1

Opening hours: Friday – Saturday 09.00 am – 1:00 am (food market 09:00 am 8:00 pm, food court and shops 11:00 am – 1:00 am), Sunday 10.00 am –  11.00 pm (food market 10:00 am – 5:00 pm, food court and shops 11:00 am – 11:00 pm)