Buenos Aires is a stunning city, rich in colonial and political history, chock-full of trendy art and fashion and baked empanadas. Its cheap wine and funky atmosphere are two of many reasons why its one of the most relaxed and hip metropolitan areas in the world. I was fortunate enough to spend my time romping around the city with a handful of friends. Some were from home and traveling along. Some were living temporarily as expatriates. Some were new friends, ones I met along the way. Below are a few images from my trip.
In the Retiro district, the British Clock Tower stands tall. Retiro is known for its high-end residences, transportation terminals and five-star hotels. This tower was a gift from the local British community and was inaugurated in 1916.
One morning, I had a meeting in Recoleta. With a healthy dose of green space, stylish statues and plazas and luxurious apartments, Recoleta is another popular district for the affluent. It’s famous for its cemetery, which caught the corner of my eye during the meeting. Before I headed back to the hotel to write up my report, I walked over to explore.
The Recoleta Cemetery houses some of Argentina’s most iconic figures—Eva Perón, Raúl Alfonsín, and several former presidents. I really enjoyed the layout. It was eerie and symmetrical and architecturally stunning.
I wasn’t looking for anything specific. Caffeine was seeping through my veins, and I needed to let the mind wander. I walked around a lot. I took pictures and turned corners. I found a textual summary of the cemetery’s history and read about neo-classical gates, the monks of the Order of the Recoletos and a nineteenth-century yellow fever epidemic. The cemetery contains space for 4800 ground-level vaults.
The Facultad de Derecho, or School of Law, at the University of Buenos Aires. It was under construction, but that didn’t stop some friends from sprinting up its steps. The University of Buenos Aires is Argentina’s largest educational institution, and one of Latin America’s most prestigious.
In La Boca district, the Boca Juniors are one of the Argentina’s most successful sports clubs. The day before I left for Uruguay, I was fortunate enough to catch a soccer game. At the end of the game, stadium officials (and local police) facilitated traffic by staggering our exits. Across the stadium are a compact section of Boca Juniors fans, disparaged from the 4-1 loss. The rest of the stadium is empty, but the Boca Juniors fans have not yet been authorized to leave.
At Cabañas en las islas, I indulged in the most toothsome rib-eye of my life. It literally, I mean literally, fell apart in my mouth. Argentina, where steaks are an art form, has the highest per capita meat consumption in the world. With its fertile grasses and ideal climate, no hormone shots or special feeds are necessary. The meat is naturally divine.
El Ataneo Grand Splendid is one of the most well-known bookstores in Buenos Aires. As you might be able to tell from the photograph, it originally opened as a theater in 1919. Eventually, the seating capacity of 1,050 gave way to bookshelves. Where the stage once was, an elegant café serves up gourmet coffee and pastries. While I only had a few days in Buenos Aires, I enjoyed my initial impressions, enough to warrant future trips. Anyone care to join me? On Friday, stay tuned for an update from Uruguay. Hope you enjoyed!