Downtown Lima is very different than downtown Bogota in that it’s bigger, better, cleaner, safer, and not crawling with crackheads. The Viceroyalty of Peru was the capital of Spanish South America for over two hundred years. Spain ruled over its territories in South America from Lima, and Mexico City governed Central America, the Caribbean, and its territories that are now part of the United States (California, Colorado, etc.). In the 18th century New Granada was established, and Bogota governed what is now Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela, and Panama.
So maybe being the capital of South America plays a part in Lima’s grandiosity. The plazas are bigger, more impressive, and make better pictures than any other city I’ve seen in Latin America, including Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro (the latter had great pics from Christ the Redeemer, but the city not so much). The government buildings look like big, important government buildings, as opposed to their counterparts in Bogota.
Most striking is the lack of crackheads AKA indigentes AKA desechables in Lima. I’m sure there are pickpockets, but it’s generally an area where you don’t have to watch your back, again in direct contrast with downtown Bogota.