We traveled into Buenos Aires via car service. The drive took about an hour. The sky here is a brilliant blue, no smog like there was in Santiago. Buenos Aires is the capital of the Argentine Republic. It is on the central eastern part of the country and on the western shore of the La Plata river. (The muddy river that we flew over.) The architecture is a mix of French Bourbon, Spanish Colonial and modern high rises. It is the second biggest city in South America with a population of around 3 million. It is called the Paris of the South because of the architecture and the wide streets. I was last in Paris over 40 years ago, so I can’t make any comparisons.
Anyway we soon arrived at our hotel, Hub Porteno. It is a small boutique hotel, it only has about 12 rooms. We like the smaller boutique hotels, they have lots of character and are not so busy.
Here is Steve outside by the front door. The picture is a little out of sequence and he has already changed out of his long sleeved shirt from yesterday, and blue blazer is safely upstairs in our closet. Since our room wasn’t quite ready, it was after all 11 in the morning we were given a tour of the hotel. Come along.
This is the view from where we sat to fill our our reservation forms.
This is the couch that we sat on. Do you think it will become famous someday? The wooden thingie in the middle was some kind of puzzle. I thought better of taking it apart.
We were left a beautiful binder by our travel agent. I hated to open it up, but how else would we know what was going to happen, and where we were to go. Of course I wanted to keep the folder. Would it remain with us the whole trip? Stay tuned.
This is the lovely patio on the fourth floor. We were to wait here until our room was ready. You can see that Steve hasn’t changed yet. There really wasn’t a view, as there were lots of bushes everywhere. It was just nice and quiet. There was a bar, I’m not sure if it was party central at night.
I thought the patio looked really pretty with the gauzy curtains.
There was a room for a massage.
This was the gym. Steve was hoping that he would wake up early on Sunday morning for a work out before we left to San Martin de los Andes where our first fishing estancia is. Down below outside the windows there appeared to be a garden cafe. It was part of the Buenos Aries Park Hyatt. I think everyone got excited when they looked out the window and thought it was part of our hotel! Outside of the gym was a small credenza with magazines. Did you know that there is a magazine named after me? Well now you do! Growing up I wasn’t so happy that my name meant beautiful in Spanish. However, now that I am older I am happy with my name. Remember the story about the couple we met in the Galapagos? His name was Washington. The Ecuadorians love to name children after American Presidents or even products. Milk of Magnesia is a common name, and Donald Trump is also a popular name!
Let’s follow Steve into our room shall we? I must admit that is is really nice!
There was a gigantic king sized bed. Interesting chairs to sit it. This is the view from the television. Lots of dramatic curtains.
The bathroom was really big. Twin vanities, a toilet and a bidet. A large soaking tub and a shower with a rainfall head or it could be switched to six jets smashing you on your torso and legs.
Our afternoon tour Buenos Aires was not going to start until 2, so we decided to go for a light lunch near the hotel.
Steve thought it was a chain as he had seen other cafes with a similar name in the States.
There was an option to eat outside, but it was a little bit warm for us to do so. Plus, who enjoys inhaling car exhaust along with their latte?
I ordered a cafe latte and Steve a macchiato. Big difference in sizes!
It took me awhile to figure out the yellow packets were fake sugar and the pouring gizmo held real sugar. Well, maybe ten seconds, but it felt like too long.
Steve had the ham and cheese croissant.
I love waffles so, that was what I had. They felt a little heavy, and the portion seemed small to me.
Here is a close up of the restaurant name. Have you ever heard of it?
Next door to the hotel was a women’s clothing shop. It has locations in Buenos Aires, Tokyo and Dubai. I am not sure if my friend from Dubai has ever shopped there. I don’t even think that she follows my blog, but I thought of her when I took the picture. In case she does read the blog-“Here’s thinking of you kid!”
Victoria our guide and Mario our driver promptly picked us up at 2. I was a little out of sorts as somehow I had misplaced my sunglasses. We thought that I had left them the in the car that we had used on the way from the airport. Victoria called the office to see if they could be located and then brought back to the hotel by next week as we would be staying at the same hotel on our last night before we flew home to the States.
First stop was Mayo Square or Plaza de Mayo in Spanish. It is the oldest public square in Buenos Aires. Straight ahead you can see the May Pyramid, constructed in 1811, in honor of the May 25, 1810 revolution. Argentina had been part of Spain prior to that.
You can see white handkerchiefs surrounding the Pyramid. This is part of the long standing protest that has been going on at Las Madres de la Plaza. During the 1970’s many people were captured by the government, tortured and then disappeared. To protest this, the mothers of the missing wore white kerchiefs and protested in silence on the Plaza. Finally the dictator was overthrown. Our tour guide never speaks his name. Steve thinks his name is Voldemort.
This white building is The Cabildo. It was built in 1580 and was the site of the colonial administration. Now it houses government office that operate the national museums.
This pink building is the Government House. It was painted pink and is also known as Casa Rosada-The Pink House.
The whole square was under construction. It is supposed to reopen in March. No way is that going to happen! The man on the horse designed the Argentinian flag.
This is the balcony of Casa Rosada.
It is here that Evita
waved from the balcony to the crowds below.
The streets would be filled with crowds filling the street below to see her! I will have to see the movie Evita with Madonna. There has been a lot of controversy that Madonna was allowed to be on the balcony for the filming of the movie.
We then went to the Metropolitan Cathedral. This is where Pope Francis was Archbishop.
It was first constructed in 1593 as chapel made of adobe bricks. In 1752 the Main church was constructed. In 1877 the chapel of General Jose of San Martin was added to the chapel.
He was very important to the history of South America. He helped lead the revolution to gain independence from Spain. Since he was a Mason he was not supposed to be buried in the church itself, so the chapel was added to the width of the cathedral to house the body. Two guards are in constant watch over his chapel. We were lucky enough to be there when the chapel guards changed. We were told that since the casket was too big, it had to be left on an angle to fit inside!After The cathedrals we drove to San Telmo, famous for the cobblestone streets. It sure made for a bumpy ride in the car!
San Telmo had lots of cute buildings, some with two stories, others were three. Notice again the cobble stone streets. Victoria asked if we would like to go to the market. You know me, I couldn’t say no to a market! Well you are just going to have to wait until I have time to post more!