In 1948 musician Bartolo Alvarez established Casa Latina where he sold music and instruments. Inspired as a youngster by hearing Rafael Hernández play at nearby Almacenes Hernández, Bartolo went on to found Alba and Rival Records, recording some of the era’s most popular artists. Casa Latina moved to its present location in 1962. Purchased in 1969 by the Rubio family, this is the longest-running music store in El Barrio
Casa Latina has been able to maintain its longevity and staying power because of its deeply rooted commitment to the community and culture of El Barrio. They’ve become a neighborhood icon not only known to residents from here to Puerto Rico, but also to Salsa’s music industries stars as well. They’ve been honored to have countless of visitors grace their place of establishment such as Tito Puente, Charlie Palmieri and Marc Anthony to name a few.