A city landmark, the Teatro Tapia on the southern side of Plaza Colón is an intimate neoclassical theater, with three-tiered boxes and an elegantly decorated lobby. Dating from 1832, the building has long been a nexus of the island’s cultural life, hosting big names in opera, stage and ballet from around the globe. Contemporary performances are usually in Spanish.
The theater was named after the father of Puerto Rican literature, Alejandro Tapia y Rivera, and experts today rate it as the oldest free-standing drama stage still in use in the US and its territories. The theater was restored extensively in 1949 and then again in 1976, 1997 and 2007.