After a long day of sightseeing around the big, grimy city of Buenos Aires, you’re probably in need of a pick me up, something that involves either being sat or reclined for a few hours and hitting your off switch before the night time activities commence (be warned: Buenos Aires is a city that never sleeps). Relax and get groomed, primped and preened at one of these pampering establishments…
While most porteños love to eat cow, very few actually look like one. Just because you are visiting the land of beef, wine and 5am Fernet boliche binges, doesn’t mean you’ll have to pack on the carb-ed out kilos. The Argentine lifestyle may look like a dieters worst nightmare, with red meat a plenty, empanadas galore, extra cheese on the side and a never-ending glass of overflowing Malbec, this weight and appearance conscious city continues to bring their sexy back and stay fit.
When it comes to finding suitable lodgings in Buenos Aires, you’re spoilt for choice, from ritzy five-star hotel chains to innumerable boutique establishments. However it’s sometimes hard to distinguish one trendy establishment from the next. For those looking for something a little more out of the ordinary, we’ve picked out some of the most unique boutique hotels in the city, all with a different vibe, story or experience to offer.
The closest that many porteños get to the Argentine countryside is sliding a serrated knife through a piece of steak, or perhaps sporting a pair of tapered bombacha trousers for a weekend stroll in the Palermo Woods. Personally, I get my fill by following the daily statistics on livestock sales and tweeting them as #cownews. But, for two weeks out of every 52, we townies have the chance to get up close and personal with the campo – and fortunately without putting a pedicured foot outside of Palermo. Ladies and gentlemen, presenting the 127th annual Rural Exhibition.
Whether you’re a business luncher, a lady who lunches, a lucky lad of leisure or a late riser who needs to eat your hangover away, whatever your midday circumstance may be, Buenos Aires is heaving with lunch promo specials. Known locally as the menú del día (daily menu) or menus ejecutivos (executive menus), during weekdays restaurants are offering daily set menus, usually including a variation of a starter, main course, dessert and a drink. While many of these restaurants cost a hefty dinner price, lunchtime specials make for the ideal opportunity to visit new, tasty hot spots and eat like a king for a fraction of the price…
If you want to take home a piece of Argentina’s design scene that goes beyond the standard gaucho knives, mate sets and cowhide rugs to something more cutting edge and current, then pay a visit to Buenos Aires’ Feria Puro Diseño that kicks off next week. The annual design fair that returns to the city’s favourite expo centre La Rural from May 21 to May 26 is the most important event on the country’s design calendar and unites the biggest movers and shakers in a showcase of cutting-edge made-in-Argentina design products.
If you are a keen dancer or a curious spectator, where do you go? It’s about time The Real Argentina put together a guide for all tastes. Below is a pick of top milongas. For the uninitiated, these are the tango dance clubs, where novices and experts go to practice, rather than the made-for-tourists dinner shows. Most milongas offer lessons, too, and for different abilities, so come early for the class, then stay to dance – and people-watch – until the early hours.
Naturally, the boundaries between street art and that in a gallery is blurred (this isn’t the place to get into a philosophical question about what ‘art’ is), but what we’ll do here is take a tour around Buenos Aires looking at the most interesting and innovative places to see art – whether in a gallery, museum, bar, or in the street. There are more than 50 independent galleries alone in the city – but like much of the hipster cultural life in the city during the last two decades, it’s Palermo where many of the cutting-edge galleries are based and, more traditionally, Recoleta where you’ll find fine art galleries and design shops…
Argentina has talked about little else during the past week. There’s 24/7 coverage on the news channels, pages upon pages of articles in every newspaper (What does his old teacher think? What happened to his first girlfriend?). At every kiosco, his face looks back at you from the covers of Caras and Hola; congratulatory posters have been hastily thrown up in shop windows. Almost everyone has a story of how they once met him, received a blessing, or saw him on the Subte – or at least a family member or next-door neighbour has.
From its beginnings as a riverside settlement, to its present day status as one of the world’s largest cities 400 years later, Buenos Aires has fit an awful lot in. It’s been wealthy and glorious, it’s been battered and broke. Its life, as scientist Jared Diamond would say, has ben shaped by guns, germs and steel. Yet such is the city’s short, intense life, most of the influential buildings are still here to be seen and explored, the museums add essential detail, while the tombs of the country’s great, good and downright dastardly can still be seen in the great city of the dead: Recoleta Cemetery.