Ah, Buenos Aires. While Argentina’s capital city is chock full of vibrant sites, sounds, and tastes, its colossal size can be daunting to the uninitiated. In order to make the most of your getaway to the city of “Good Airs,” we’ve put together our picks for where to stay — including key barrios (neighborhoods) and our favorite Buenos Aires hotels. Trust us – after all that red wine and tangoing, you’re going to want a comfy bed to recover.
For our money, we recommend staying in Recoleta or Palermo. Both barrios are on the city’s balmy coast and are home to historic or cultural attractions, great restaurants and cafes, shopping, and easy access to public transportation. There are several hotels in these areas, but we’ve settled on a few we think are mucho major than the rest. Take a look.
1: Meliá Recoleta Plaza, Recoleta
We always say that if it’s good enough for Eva Perón, it’s good enough for us. This luxe property in the heart of Recoleta was reportedly the first residence of Argentina’s famous, and still much beloved, First Lady, Señora Perón. The 57-room hotel practically oozes Old-World elegance from its white neoclassic façade, rich umber interiors, and Chesterfield sofas. Rooms are spacious and feature wood floors, white textiles, and antique furnishings; modern touches include free WiFi, a safe, a minibar, and Roman shower.
What’s more, hotel amenities include a day spa, two terraces (one indoor and outdoor), and garden areas. The onsite Bistro Recoleta Restaurant features Argentinian and Mediterranean fare including pasta, fresh fish, and beef entrées. There is also a breakfast buffet of fresh fruits, juices, and pastries – usually accompanied by a live piano serenade. Rooms start at about $130/night.
2: Esplendor by Wyndham Buenos Aires, Recoleta
Though part of the Wyndam Hotels brand, the Esplendor has a personality all its own. Housed in a historic, neo-Renaissance corner edifice, the Esplendor includes a decidedly modern vibe inside. Clean contemporary interiors in warm neutrals punctuated with splashes of deep violets and reds are the backdrop for modern art pieces scattered throughout. While it doesn’t have a restaurant onsite (typical of Buenos Aires hotels) it does have a game room on the mezzanine level with a pool table and a full suite of video games. And don’t worry, there are plenty of eateries steps from the hotel entrance.
Rooms are comfy with plush comforters and modular accessories, giving you the ability to make the room truly your own. Other amenities include free WiFi, an LCD TV, and a free breakfast buffet. The hotel is centrally located, just steps away from great shopping at Peatonal Florida and the Galerías Pacífico shopping mall. Rooms start at about $100/night.
3: Alvear Palace Hotel, Recoleta
For something really posh among Buenos Aires hotels, go with the Alvear Palace Hotel. Built to accommodate the luxe taste of the 1930s European riche during their Argentinian holidays, the hotel is more a palace than, well, a hotel. Typical of this upscale Recoleta neighborhood, the hotel is a showpiece of classical architecture. Throughout, stately public rooms, halls, and corridors are adorned Louis XV-like with colossal crystal chandeliers, gold leafing, and famous artwork. A white marble staircase leads up to the building’s 10 floors, housing some 200 elegant rooms and suites. Amenities and décor are top-notch and plentiful, featuring exquisite textiles (silks, velvets, and wool carpets), marble bathrooms, and Hermès products.
Not surprisingly, onsite dining options are appropriately fabulous. The Alvear Grill leads the way with a contemporary grill concept featuring a smartly curated menu of non-traditional cuts of premium meats grilled to perfection atop a hardwood fire. Count on strong pairings with top Argentinian wines or other world labels to round out this elevated dining experience. There is also L’Organgerie for an elegant, but understated breakfast, lunch, or afternoon tea; and the Alvear Roof Bar for that Fernet before turning in. Rooms start at about $250/night.
4: Home Hotel Bueno Aires, Palermo
Home is a unique hotel concept in Buenos Aires, situated in the trendy Palermo Hollywood barrio — so named thanks to the wealth of TV and film studios in the area and the local celebs who frequent the neighborhood. The hotel includes 20 unique rooms and suites nested in the treelined recesses of a quiet Palermo street. Floral wallpaper, mid-century Scandinavian furniture, and quirky furnishings make Home feel as unique as well, home. Each room is an experience unto itself with any number of features like city views, rich textiles, ’50s vintage furniture, jacuzzies, and balconies. All rooms include free WiFi, an LCD TV, minibar, and bespoke bathroom products.
The onsite garden restaurant is open for all meals and is the locals’ Sunday go-to for brunch (five words: Waffles with Berries and Cream). Menus are chock full of local dishes made with seasonal, locally sourced ingredients and include standouts like Beetroot Cured Salmon Carpaccio; Black Tagliatelle with Squid, Tomato Salsa, and Garlic-Infused Olive Oil; and Slow-Roasted Beef with Baked New Potatoes in Rosemary Butter. Signature drinks on the patio, like their deliciously spicy Heráclito & Macedonio, are a must at least once a day. Rooms start at $210/night.
5: Mine Hotel Boutique, Palermo
The Mine Hotel Boutique offers a Palermo accommodation experience perfectly balanced between comfort and design. Each of Mine’s 20 rooms is light and airy with white walls, stone and wood accents, and a unique signature punch color — blush, lime, or tangerine, for example. Other room amenities include free WiFi, PC access (with internet), a scrumptious buffet breakfast, and a DVD player (with access to their DVD library). The hotel also sports an outdoor pool and sun deck nestled among trees and shrubbery, sunny sitting rooms that spill out to the stunning internal courtyard, and a coffee bar. The Mine Hotel Bistro includes cocktail service you can enjoy poolside before you head off for dinner in tony Palermo. Rooms start at $215/night.
6: Magnolia Hotel Boutique, Palermo
Antique furnishings and rich color give the Magnolia Hotel Boutique an Art Nouveau-ish charm. Housed in a beautifully restored Argentinian villa, the eight rooms at the Magnolia make for a quieter and elevated boutique experience. Each room is decorated in a unique style with wooden floors, vintage fabrics, and marble bathroom countertops. WiFi, a safe, quality bathroom products, and a made-to-order breakfast round out the amenities. The hotel also offers a parquet-floored patio, warm salons, and 24-hour concierge service. Rooms start at $190/night.
Now that you know where you’re staying, have a look at our article on Buenos Aires for tips on how to enjoy this glorious city.