By  on September 30, 2013

José María Blanco, chief executive officer of El Palacio de Hierro, nearly fell out of his seat when Don Alberto Baillères, the company’s owner, disclosed a daring scheme.

In the middle of Mexico’s “Tequila Crisis,” the economic collapse triggered by the sudden devaluation of the peso in 1994, Baillères instructed Blanco to buy some prime real estate in Polanco, an affluent neighborhood just north of Chapultepec Park in Mexico City.

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