bed and breakfast

Parks and Plazas Abound in Buenos Aires, Argentina

Plaza San Martin

Plaza San Martin

By Roy Heale

Splendid parks and plazas abound in Buenos Aires enabling both locals and tourists to enjoy relaxing green spaces in the heart of this mecca. Varying in size and scope, these urban retreats all offer a unique perspective on the history of Buenos Aires and often feature statues and memorials to prominent Argentine political or military leaders.

Large Mature Trees

Large Mature Trees

One of my personal favorites is the Plaza San Martin located in the Retiro neighbourhood of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Situated at the northern end of pedestrian Florida Street, the park is bounded by Libertador Ave. (N), Maipú St. (W), Santa Fe Avenue (S), and Leandro Alem Av. (E). With a history dating back to the 18th century, today the park is encircled by many historic moments in Argentina’s history.

Great Ombú Tree

Great Ombú Tree

Some of the Plaza’s past includes the 33-story Art Deco Kavanagh Building which was completed in 1936, Plaza San Martín’s great Ombú tree, the monument to José de San Martín—the plaza’s namesake—and the monument for the fallen in the Falklands War. Three architecturally significant mansions facing the plaza surviving today include the Beaux Arts San Martín Palace (today the ceremonial annex of the Foreign Ministry), the Second Empire Paz Palace (today the Military Officers’ Association) and the Neogothic Haedo palace (today the Secretariat of Environmental Policy).The plaza in 1909 was the site for the inaugural of both the first premier hotel in Argentina (the Plaza) and of the new National Museum of Fine Arts (the latter was later moved to Recoleta).

Second Empire Paz Palace

Second Empire Paz Palace

The large, aged trees provide excellent shade on a Buenos Aires hot sunny day, and the pathways and park benches offer a wide variety of perspectives to enjoy year round.

Ritz Hotel Entrance

Ritz Hotel Entrance

On the southwest corner of the Plaza, the Torcuato & Regina Bar-Bistro is conveniently located to enjoy the sidewalk cafe tables plus the huge windows provide a perfect view for relaxing and indoor dining, or simply meeting friends for drinks. Close to the downtown business district, many historic sights, and the bustle of the Florida Street pedestrian mall, it is also the perfect respite for a break from strenuous activities affording time to stop and smell the roses in an otherwise frenetic day.

 

Torcuato & Regina Bar-Bistro

Torcuato & Regina Bar-Bistro

 

So find a good book or your favorite magazine and head to Plaza San Martin for a relaxing time in the hub of Buenos Aires and perhaps go shopping afterwards on the renowned Florida Street pedestrian mall.

Gay-Friendly Accommodations, Casa De Borgona, Salta, Argentina

By Roy Heale

Casa De Borgona, Salta, Argentina

Nestled in the Andes mountain range, Salta is a city in the heart of the Lerma Valley, at 1,152 metres (3780 feet) above sea level in the north west part of Argentina. Along with its metropolitan area, it has a population of approximately 800,000 inhabitants, which makes it the second most populated city in the northwest of the country. Within Argentina, Salta is the city which has preserved its colonial architecture the best. Also known as Salta la Linda (“Salta the beautiful”), it has become a major LGBT tourist vacation destination due to its old, colonial architecture, tourism friendliness, awesome weather, and the natural scenery of the valleys westward.

Spanish Style Courtyard

Set in a charming historic Spanish building only a short walk to Plaza principal 9 de Julio square, the gay-friendly Casa De Borgona pousada provides the atmosphere for an enjoyable stay in Salta. It is housed in a restored 20th-century townhouse with the guest bedrooms arranged around a lovely courtyard with potted plants, fruit trees and wrought iron and wood benches. The English speaking gay-friendly staff will ensure a warm welcome.

A generous complimentary continental breakfast is served each morning in the dining room or on the patio. The rooms are spacious, with daily maid service, and includes linens and towels.

Cafe Dining Room

The rooms include free Wi-Fi and cable TV in central Salta. It features a coffee shop and a patio.
Casa de Borgoa’s warm service, colonial-style decor and tranquil atmosphere, create an inviting and relaxing atmosphere for an enjoyable stay in Salta.

Set in a charming building only 300 metres from Guemes Square, Posada Casa de Borgona offers rooms free Wi-Fi and cable TV in central Salta. It features a coffee shop and a patio.

Posada Casa de Borgoña offers Double Rooms,Family Rooms,Quadruple Rooms, and Triple Room accommodation in Salta.

Reception

Decorated with parquet floors and wooden furnishings, rooms at Casa de Borgona have heating and guests can relax on the patio or in the lobby, which is decorated with modern paintings. They can also enjoy hot beverages at the coffee shop. Posada Casa de Borgona is 2 km from the bus station and 400 metres from Plaza Principal 9 de Julio Square.

During my recent stay at the pousada the guests were a mixture of gay, lesbian, and straight customers and all were equally welcomed with generous hospitality.

Lounge Area

Facilities:
•24-Hour Front Desk
•Garden
•Heating
•Designated Smoking Area

Services:
•Airport Shuttle
•Laundry
•Breakfast in the Room
•Ironing Service
•Internet Services
•Bicycle Rental
•Car Hire
•Tour Desk
•Fax/Photocopying
•Wi-Fi/Wireless LAN
•Free Wi-Fi Internet Access Included
•Shuttle Service (surcharge)

Lobby

www.posadacasadeborgona.com.ar
Address: España 916, 4400 Salta, Salta Province, Argentina
Phone:+54 387 431-5289
Email: info@posadacasadeborgona.com.ar

JARDIN JAPONES PALERMO

 

 By Roy Heale

In a city of thirteen million people you might think it is hard to escape the urban noise and bustle, but residents of Palermo in the heart of Buenos Aires are fortunate to have large parks and woodlands close at hand. One of the smaller parks within this green space is the Jardin Japones—Japanese Garden—where the Feng Shui influence creates a tranquil escape under the shadows of high-rise towers.

 Under the care of the Japanese Cultural Foundation of Arentina these gardens have been in existence since 1969 to create a peaceful oasis for visitors to enjoy year-round. The park was created to honor a visit by one of the Japanese princes of that era. It includes a pavilion with a traditional Japanese tea-house, cultural center, library, and Oriental souvenirs. Plus of course the gardens are landscaped with lakes full of fish and ducks, footbridges, walkways, greenhouse, and ornaments encompassing Feng Shui traditions. A leisurely stroll around the grounds will prove to be a very calming and tranquil relief from the busy city.

 Children can enjoy feeding the fish—mostly large Carp—in the ponds or attending an origami folding class in the cultural center. Throughout the year Asian cultural fairs and festivals take place in the grounds.

 The garden is located at the intersection of Avenue Berro Adolfo and Avenue Casares opposite the Plaza Alamenia—German Plaza. The park admission is a very nominal two dollars towards the expenses and administration which provides several hours of enjoyment. During the summer the park hours are Monday to Friday 10AM to 6PM and Saturday and Sunday 10AM to 7PM and check their website for winter hours.

 Although the park is enjoyable throughout the year it is alive with colors during early spring and late fall. It provides a colorful garden for all the family to enjoy amidst the Palermo woodlands and parks.

 It’s just another of the many reasons why Palermo is a popular residential community in the heart of Buenos Aires.

 For More Information Visit: www.jardinjapones.com.ar