Buenos Aires Avenues: Leandro Alem

alem

PH:Marysol*

Named after the UCR political party founder Leandro Alem, this bustling avenue spans from Plaza San Martín to Casa Rosada (Pink House), where government headquarters are located, and is a lesson in Argentine political and economic history.

You can start the tour at Plaza San Martín  which is full of shady trees and also where the Monument to the soldiers fallen in Malvinas/Falklands is placed. The neighboring Kavanagh building is another important landmark, and in front of Plaza San Martín, in the Plaza Fuerza Aérea Argentina, is  the Torre Monumental clock tower  which is another of the city’s historical sites. Further on, a few blocks with skyscrapers and banks form part of the central commercial district of the city, and here you will find some emblematic skyscrapers such as Torre Catalinas Norte, named after Alem’s unrequited love, and others such as the IBM tower and the Alas building. In front of Catalinas is the Edificio Dinamarca, which on weekdays has a good Danish lunch spot, Club Danés, on the 12th floor with a great view of the river and skyline.

Crossing Corrientes Avenue (from where you can see the Obelisco), the Centro Cultural Kirchner, once the central post office of the city, is well worth the visit and offers a lot of interesting exhibits and cultural activities. Other government offices line Alem until reaching the famous Casa Rosada and Plaza de Mayo, where government headquarters are located. Don’t miss out on one of the weekend tours before losing yourself on the other side in the San Telmo district as you look for antiques and a nice place to stop for coffee

Buenos Aires Architecture: La Casa de los Lirios

(Photo by FJTUrban (sommelier d mojitos))

The Balvanera neighborhood is home to two stunning buildings, both designed by Eduardo Rodriguez Ortega. The first is a residential building with a façade reminiscent of Gaudí and is known as La Casa de los Lirios. The other is nearby and has a stunning cupola with an insignia in Catalan that says no hi ha somnis imposibles (which translates to “there are no impossible dreams”). And in fact, the beauty of the constructions illustrates this idea to perfection.

La Casa de los Lirios was built between 1903 and 1905. The facade is ornamented with leaves and iris flowers (lirios) that give the building its name. Crowning the ledge is a plaster face of an old man that is presumed to be either Poseidon or Aeolus, his son. The entrance and windows are decorated with fluid lines made of iron.

If in the neighborhood, don’t miss the chance to stop and admire these two examples of the gorgeous local architecture. La Casa de los Lirios is located on Av. Rivadavia 2027 and the cupola is on Av. Rivadavia 2009.

Yusuke Shibata at Centro Cultural Borges

(Photo by BoNoNoBo – Images à la sauvette de la vie)

The Centro Cultural Borges, set in the stunning Galerias Pacífico, is showcasing the works of Yusuke Shibata, a new generation Japanese artist who works with mixed media including sculpture, photography, video and installations. The artist’s pieces deal with themes such as the ambiguity of reality, the absurd, and the blur between fiction and fact.

The exhibition is taking place until the 5th of January, alongside another showcase that features a selection of upcomming Argentine artists.  Centro Cultural Borges is open from Monday to Saturday from 10am to 9pm and on Sundays from midday to 9pm. Tickets are 30 pesos.  Viamonte 500, downtown.

This Week in Buenos Aires

Monday

(Photo by TheFutureIsUnwritten)

The MALBA is showcasing a new exhibit until the 1st of July on the work of Grete Stern.  Avenida Figueroa Alcorta 3415, Recoleta. 4808-6500.

In the evening stop by La Peña del Colorado that serves traditional food and stages live shows as well as hosting folklore dances for the community.  From midnight onwards they also encourage the diners to play spontaneous guitar music. (They offer the guitars).  Güemes 3657, Palermo. 4822-1038. info@lapeniadelcolorado.com.

Tuesday

(Photo by PortalComic)

Take a private tour with Buenos Aires Historico Tours. Their guides are historians and other humanities graduates from the Buenos Aires University and they will show you a unique side of the city! 4307-8539.buenosaireshistorico@yahoo.com.ar

Polish your Spanish and make new friends at the Tuesday conversation classes organized by Bueno, Dale! Spanish School in different city bars. The hour long practice sessions are open for all levels and all one must do is show up from 7pm to 8pm with a 30-peso fee. The location of each event is announced via Facebook.

 

Wednesday

(Photo by :Antonio)

Take a walk down Pasaje Rivarola, a beautiful hidden street which appears to be stuck in time in the historical downtown area. Built in 1926 and characterized by its mirrored buildings on both sides, it is a regular location for film productions looking for an old fashioned feel. Whilst you’re there visit “La Chacarita de Los Relojes”, a small shop specializing in antique clock and watch restoration.

Later on stop by La Catedral in Almagro where you can take a tango lesson starting at 7.30 pm or 9pm. Sarmiento 4006, Almagro.

Thursday

(Photo by gdiazdeleon)

Book a special shopping tour with Creme de la Creme. Roam the vintage scene, find the perfect souvenir, get into local designers or discover the art scene in Buenos Aires.  More information here.

Book your place for one of Anuva Wine tastings and discover great Argentine wines.

Friday

(Photo by tomasfer)

Check out the newly remodeled A-line subway and stop at some of the city’s most emblematic historic landmarks including Plaza de Mayo and the Casa Rosada, Casa de la Cultura, Café Tortoni and 36 Billares, Congress, Las Violetas and Parque Centenario.

If you are a Beatles fan head to Boris Club de Jazz where Nube 9 will stage a live show at 10pm and interpret the White Album. Gorriti 5568, Palermo.

Saturday and Sunday

(Photo by Lumiago)

Remember to make a reservation for Hernán Gipponi’s unique must-try brunch, served on Saturdays and Sundays! Soler 5862, Palermo Hollywood. 3220-6800.  info@hgrestaurant.com.ar

In the spirit of Easter go on an easter egg chocolate shopping spree at gourmet chocolateries Vassalisa in Recoleta, Tikal in Palermo, and Compañia de Chocolates in Palermo and Recoleta.  We also recommed you try the traditional rosca de pascua.

PM Open air music– Outdoor live music, art and more merge in this new Saturday event which takes place in Palermo from 2pm to 9pm. Paraguay 4905, Palermo

Don’t miss the free concert at the Colón Theatre at 11 am on Sunday. Pick up your tickets in advance! Cerrito 628, Downtown.

On Sunday The Killers will be staging a live show at GEBA. Tickets here.

Find a ten-day weather forecast here.

Downtown Bar: Le Merval

(Photo by Magh)

Buenos Aires is well known for its upbeat nightlife and its variety of unique bars. Le Merval is no exception.

For those who are out of the stock exchange loop, the Merval is the most important index of the Buenos Aires Stock Exchange and it’s no wonder this downtown drinking haven has adopted its name. Defined as a Stockmarket Concept Bar, the busy locale determines its prices based on customer demand.  Every six minutes a plasma screen updates the drink-stock price until the next round.

Le Merval also hosts different theme nights and open bar night for a fixed price on Saturday’s.

Opening hours are from Tuesday through Friday from 5pm onwards and Saturday from 10pm to closing.  Viamonte 852, Downtown. 4326-0183

Downtown Bistro: Dill and Drinks

Set in the heart of the Buenos Aires downtown area, just blocks away from Plaza San Martín, Dill and Drinks combines welcoming decor, scrumptious food and excellent cocktails. The small bistro offers a special summer menu complete with gazpacho, ceviche, vichyssoise and more, and for those who want to stop by in the afternoon, a great selection of tapas. Their cocktails are one of their specialties and they also have a top of the line wine selection. Additionally, their bright 50’s style decor makes for the ideal setting to enjoy a quality meal, delicious drinks and a lovely time in an area where the culinary options are generally limited. If in the neighborhood visiting Plaza San Martín, viewing the Kavanagh building or roaming the Retiro area, then this is definitely a good option to stop for lunch, drinks or dinner.  They also offer cocktail workshops. San Martín 986, Downtown. 4515-0675.

Tina Modotti at the Centro Cultural Borges

(Tina Modotti, Workers Parade, 1926. dr jk)

Buenos Aires is brimming with art and one of the most interesting artists on display at the moment is Tina Modotti, a multifaceted Italian photographer with a life full of adventure. The talented artist was a Hollywood actress for a brief period. She was also an activist against fascism in Italy, and she participated in the Spanish Civil War, in the Communist Party in Moscow and in the Mexican post-revolution.

The exhibit showcases her photographs of Mexico where she befriended Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera and David Siqueiros.  It is taking place in the Centro Cultural Borges until the 12th of February from Monday to Saturday from 10am to 9pm and Sundays from midday to 9pm. Tickets cost 30 pesos.  Viamonte and San Martín, downtown. 5555-5359, info@ccborges.org.ar