Repostería Astor is a chain of Swiss cafés in Medellín that are famous for pastries, cakes and chocolates with a history tracing back to 1930.
Astor has eight cafés in Medellín and its largest location is in El Centro. This chain of cafés has European-style pastries, cakes, and chocolates and is very popular.
My Colombian wife loves the pastries, cakes and chocolates at Astor and buys them frequently. And several Medellin Guru readers recommended we cover this chain. Note the above photos are courtesy of Astor.
History of Astor
In 1930, the Swiss Enrique Baer opened the Astor Tea Room in El Centro in Medellín, where he had arrived a few years earlier to work as a pastry technician in a chocolate factory.
From the beginning, Enrique and his wife Anny Gippert were in charge of supervising the precision of the processes and the quality of the products they offered. Astor started out as a small place with five tables and ten employees.
Its clientele was composed mainly of the European residents of Medellín, who were faithful to this place from the start. After strolling through the cobbled streets of Junín in El Centro or visiting the nearby elegant stores, many entered the Astor café with its delicacies or buy fine confectionery to take home.
In the 1950’s Emilio Leber and Alfredo Suwald arrived who were Swiss pastry specialists and became partners in Astor. And Astor became famous for its pastries and cakes including bridal cakes and special products for Christmas and Mother’s Day.
In 1968, founder Enrique retired. And in 1990, the Suwald family acquired all the shares of Astor and Emilio returned to Switzerland. And after the death of Alfredo Suwald, his daughter, Andrea took over the business.
Over the years, this café in El Centro grew to its current size, which is one of the largest cafés/restaurants in El Centro. And this chain reportedly has a factory located in El Poblado.
Also, Astor is known for supporting women and disclosed that 129 of its 155 employees are women head of family.
The Food Menu
Astor in El Centro is the largest of the Astor locations. And it has a bigger menu than the other locations.
The menu at the El Centro location includes:
- Five breakfast dishes for 6,000 to 12,500 pesos.
- Three soups for 9,500 to 11,300 pesos.
- Five sandwiches for 17,800 to 19,800 pesos.
- Three quiches for 13,400 pesos each.
- Two salads for 14,800 and 18,700 pesos
- Ravioli or lasagna dishes for 21,200 pesos.
- Six other dishes for 13,100 to 21,200 pesos.
- A fruit salad for 11,300 pesos.
Also, there are many pastries available for 3,700 to 7,900 pesos. In addition, there are many cakes with small portions for 7,000 pesos and bigger portions for 8,000 pesos.
Finally, there are several ice cream dishes on the menu. A single cone of ice cream is 3,400 pesos and a double cone is 4,700 pesos. In addition, there are several more ice cream options with prices ranging from 3,700 to 14,000 pesos. A banana-split costs 14,000 pesos.
And of course, you can buy the chocolates, cakes and pastries that this chain is famous for that are shown in display cases.
The Drink Menu
The drink menu at Astor is relatively small and includes several fruit juices for 6,400 to 7,900 pesos and lemonade for 5,900 pesos.
Also, there are six malted drinks for 9,300 pesos each. And there are teas, bottled water, milk and cokes available for 1,800 to 6,300 pesos.
In addition, there are seven different coffees for 4,100 to 6,500 pesos. And there are hot teas and hot chocolates for 3,500 to 7,000 pesos.
How to Get to Astor
Astor has eight locations in the Medellín area and its largest location is in El Centro:
- El Centro – Carrera 49 # 52-84, Hours: Monday to Friday: 9 am to 7 pm, Saturday: Saturday 9 am to 6:30 pm, Sunday: Closed.
- El Poblado – Carrera 43A # 25-116, Hours: Monday to Saturday: 8 am to 7 pm, Sunday: Closed.
- Laureles – Transversal 39 # 73B-78, Hours: Monday to Saturday: 11 am to 7:30 pm, Sunday and holidays: Noon to 7 pm.
- Laureles – Carrera 66B # 34A-76 in Unicentro mall, Hours: Monday to Saturday: 10 am to 9 pm, Sunday and holidays: 11 am to 8 pm.
- Envigado – Carrera 48 # 32B Sur-139 in Viva Envigado mall, Hours: Monday to Saturday: 9 am to 9 pm, Sunday and holidays: 10 am to 8 pm.
- Envigado – Calle 20Sur #27-55 in San Lucas Plaza, Hours: Monday to Saturday: 9:30 am to 8:30 pm, Sunday and holidays: 11 am to 8 pm.
- Belén – Calle 30A # 82A-26 in Los Molinos mall, Hours: Monday to Saturday: 10 am to 9 pm, Sunday and holidays: 11 am to 8 pm.
- Medellín’s airport – located inside the José María Córdova airport, Hours: Monday to Sunday: 6 am to 11 pm.
The Astor in El Centro is the largest and the above food and drink menu in this article applies to the El Centro location. Other Astor locations are smaller, particularly in malls and at the airport, which have more limited menus.
Astro in El Centro is located on Carrera 49 (Junín) in El Centro. This café is easy to get to as it is located about a 5-minute walk from the Parque Berrio metro station on Line A of the Medellín metro.
Carrera 49 (Junín) is a pedestrian street in El Centro that all taxi drivers in the city will know.
Domicillio phone: +57 4 560 0860
Payment accepted: Credit cards or cash
The Best Restaurants in El Centro in Medellín
We have looked a six of the best restaurants in El Centro in Medellín:
- Hacienda – a popular chain of Colombian restaurants with six locations in Medellín including one in El Centro.
- Pizzeria Centro – a hidden gem pizzeria in El Centro with excellent thin-crust pizzas.
- Hato Viejo – a chain of Colombian restaurants with four locations in Medellín including one in El Centro.
- Astor – a large Swiss café that is very popular and famous for its cakes, pastries and chocolates.
- Versalles – a popular Argentinian restaurant in El Centro that is best known for its large empanadas.
- Palazzetto D’Italía – a hidden gem Italian restaurant in El Centro.
We plan to look at more of the best restaurants located in El Centro in Medellín.
The Bottom Line: Repostería Astor – Popular Swiss Cafés in Medellín
If you are looking for European-style cakes, pastries and chocolates you can find them in the Repostería Astor chain of Swiss cafés in Medellín.
This chain is very popular due to having good food and very good cakes, pastries and chocolates. And the El Centro location of Astor is its most famous location and the largest by far.
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I love Astor and they have excellent desserts and chocolates. When friends visit me in Medellin I always take them to Astor in El Centro, which is impressive with all the choices.
I love Astor for a cup of coffee and a pastry. It is definitely a destination location for me whenever I am in Centro.
They recently completed a complete rebranding and renovation of the main location on Junin. It was very successful, in my opinion. Service is good. Pricing is fair. Graphically, they have their act together. In every way the visual branding is excellent.
I tried to eat off the menu in the past and found many of the items absolutely inedible. Choices were either tasteless with no flavor opinion at all (much Colombian food tends to be bland), or the items were covered in a pasty Bechamel sauce, which I realize can be popular in France and Switzerland, but strikes me as tasteless empty calories and very not healthy.
I will look more closely at the food next time I am there. I hope to find a flavor/health improvement. With a revamped creative, cutting edge, unique, healthy menu, Astor could become one of the most important eating locations in the region. I think they need to move out of the comfort zone and get really creative with the food portion. The facility is great with unlimited potential.
I agree with you. Astor needs to work on the food menu and have more options in El Centro. I have tried breakfast, a salad and a soup there and they were all pretty good. But they could easily expand the menu.
The Astor was THE place in the 1960s for Peace Corps Volunteers to congregate, especially those coming into Medellín from their assignments in the campo. Day or evening the Astor was the go to place to meet up with other PCVs.