Take a weekend in . . . Buenos Aires
From a fashionable supper club to a visit to Evita’s tomb, there’s more to the Argentinian city than steak and tango
8 Food as art
Along one of Palermo Hollywood’s rapidly changing streets is a graffitied facade with only a small sign on the black door: Tegui, one of the most exciting restaurants in Buenos Aires. The jewel box of a diningroom has three focal points: a wall of glassed-in wine bottles at the front, a palm-shaded smoking atrium in the middle and the open kitchen in the rear. From end-to-end, a fleet of movie-star-handsome waiters in white jackets glide, delivering dishes that are as notable for their pairings as their presentation: scallops with green apple and coconut foam; rabbit ravioli with peaches; Chilean sea bass served with an octopus Bolognese sauce. A three-course dinner for two, about 700 pesos (€87), without wine.
9 Midnight toast
Just as Porteños dine late, they stay out even later, and the fancy boîte, Isabel, isn’t too far away. Here, you’ll discover a classic Art Deco interior – plush velvet sofas, mahogany tables, herringbone wood floors – that’s tricked out with a long mirrored bar and bulbous overhead lamps that pulse to the sound of the D.J. Just don’t get too distracted that you forget to order your martini or champagne cocktail (75 pesos, €9) before last call at 3.15am.
10 Green scene
Buenos Aires is a verdant city. Towering plane trees make tunnels out of the avenues, bougainvillea blooms up the sides of homes, and parks ranging from scruffy to splendorous are everywhere. But none are as wild as the Costanera Sur Ecological Reserve, an 865-acre swath of marshland along the Río de la Plata. Follow the path from the park’s southern entrance and you’ll soon be surrounded by egrets and swans, and green parrots squawking overhead. Grab lunch afterward at one of the streetside parrillas on the bordering Avenida Tristán Achával. While you enjoy your choripán (grilled chorizo on a roll) you can watch fit Porteños jogging, in-line skating and bicycling up and down the promenade.
11 High notes
End your visit with one last dose of culture. The city’s opera house, Teatro Colón, welcomes groups of up to 30 people every 15 minutes, seven days a week (110 pesos, €14). Considered one of the best concert halls in the world, Teatro Colón has hosted world-renowned conductors, opera singers and ballet dancers in its 105-year history and its interior befits such grandeur. The tour takes you through the sweeping entry hall, where costumes from past performances are displayed, through the Golden Room, which is reminiscent of Versailles’ Hall of Mirrors, and finally inside the concert hall where, if you’re lucky, a musician or two will be rehearsing on stage.
– New York Times service