October 22, 2013

Around Town: Palermo Nuevo


Shopping in Palermo Nuevo - Showroom on Cabello Street. 

Palermo Nuevo is a small residential area, housing some of the city’s most luxurious houses, trendy boutiques, bars and outstanding restaurants. It has a polished feel, with broad tree-lined sidewalks and high-end cafes spread throughout, perfect for sitting outside and watching the day pass by.

Quieter at night than the nearby Palermo Hollywood and Soho neighborhoods, it is nevertheless within walking distance to both; and with Libertador Avenue just a few blocks away, the rest of the city is quickly and easily accessible. An added benefit is the area’s proximity to the Parks of Palermo, a beautiful network of parks and gardens, extremely popular for running, biking or relaxing.

A classic in the neighborhood is the famous Guido’s Bar (Republic of India 2843), serving at noon and evening homemade pasta and antipasti fatto in casa, served by its owner.

Orecchiette with truffles  - Guido's Bar

Great Restaurants and places to eat in Palermo Nuevo

An alternative for lovers of design and aesthetics is Leopoldo. Is that in this bar / restaurant deco Javier Iturrioz and Cynthia Cohen works frame a fun space that merges timeless and universal aesthetic codes with a delicious menu and creative and delicious drinks.

What to take: beer and signature drinks accompanied by delicious dishes such as "finger food

Leopoldo's Bar - Palermo Nuevo

Voulez Bar
Take breakfast at Voulez Bar, with croissants, or go for a walk to Palermo and make a stop at the classic “Doney” for coffee and orange juice are part of the mystique of the neighborhood. Address: Cerviño 3802/3812.

As described by the owner, "the idea is that the client can connect with the food", so the menu varies daily, every morning it is posted on Facebook, and the plates are displayed for each customer to choose their lunch. There are always two salads, three sandwiches, four entrees, a pie and a soup. All products are fresh and in small portions to try more than one option and have a picnic lunch. Address: Bulnes 2707

Voulez Bar - Palermo Nuevo.

La Dorita
Back-to-basics La Dorita grills up well-priced steaks served in a casual atmosphere – televised fútbol games indoors, sidewalk tables outdoors.Order the house wine and a mini parrillada (mixed grill) of three different cuts of beef.
Address: Cabello and Bulnes Street.

Cultural life comes with the Evita Museum (Cabello 3926), which also has a bar and restaurant with a menu for lunch. The museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 11 am to 7 pm, and Tuesdays admission is free. During the weekend, the theater Sarmiento (Avenida Sarmiento 2715) has a varied theatrical billboard, with very good prices.

Museo Evita - Restaurant 
Jauja Ice cream!  

Jauja is famous ice cream shop from the patagonian region. They are originanly from Bariloche and last year they decided to open one shop here in Buenos Aires. They have some especial flavors like wine, beer and realy good fruit flavors from differents berrys.

Ice Cream - Jauja Ice Cream Parlour - Palermo

Persicco and Volta are great ice cream chains located in this neighborhood. The Ice cream is really good.

Jauja: Address: Cerviño 3901.
Volta: Avenida Libertador 3060.
Persicco: Salguero 2591.

Attractions in Palermo Chico

Galileo Galilei Planetarium- Palermo

Palermo Chico 

Simply meaning Little Palermo, this part of Buenos Aires’ largest barrio is tucked away in its easternmost corner. It is bounded by Avenida del Libertador to the south and the train tracks to the north, and the streets Tagle to the east and Cavia to the west.

Characteristic of Palermo’s many aliases; the barrio is also referred to as Barrio Parque. This is the place of millionaires and ambassadors, local television and sporting celebrities.

An introduction to Palermo Chico

The modern day origins of Palermo can be traced back to 1836 when Juan Manuel de Rosas, a politician and military leader, acquired land and built a residence on the corner of Avenida del Libertador and Avenida Sarmiento. However, plans for Palermo Chico were not drawn up until 1912. The idea was to take advantage of the land used during for the Industrial Exhibition of the 1910 centenary celebrations.

The French-Argentine landscape architect Carlos Thays was handed the responsibility of designing the barrio. It is split into two distinctive sectors with Avenida Figueroa Alcorta running through the middle. The northern side is characterized by its grand mansions and Tudor-style homes complete with private gardens. Whilst the south side also displays opulence, from the 1940s the barrio witnessed the development of large apartment blocks.

Pink Lapacho - Palermo Chico

Things to see, do or both

Palermo Chico is a wonderful barrio for walking, especially so if you have an interest in architecture. The streets around Plaza Republica de Chile are home to numerous embassy and government buildings. Across Figueroa Alcorta, between Tagle and Ortiz de Ocampo, the spider’s web of streets is lined with some of the most lavish homes in the city. This is the area of the celebrities.

The barrio is also popular with art enthusiasts and has some notable galleries and museums. Check out MALBA (Museo de Arte Latinamericano de Buenos Aires) on Figueroa Alcorta to see the work of Rafael Barradas and Diego Rivera plus temporary exhibitions from the likes of Andy Warhol and Frida Kahlo. Come on Wednesday for half price admission (free for students). Whilst in the area, go to Museo Nacional de Arte Decorativo to find weaponry, sculpture and antique furniture collections.

Palermo Chico is particularly enjoyable during La Noche de Museos when all the city museums are open to the public for free. Other venues in the area are Mueso de Arte Popular Jose Hernandez, which is set in the former home of the prestigious Bunge family, and MAMAN Fine Art gallery.

Inside the Museum of Latin American Art of Buenos Aires ( MALBA )

For a small barrio there is certainly plenty to keep you occupied. Should you want a rest then head to the western side and Plaza Alemana. Another creation of Carlos Thays, the park is a popular hangout of local residents. Being fenced off, there are no dogs thus it is devoid of the pet excrement that often blights the city. From here, you can cross to the Jardin Japones or continue along either Figueroa Alcorta or Libertador to El Rosedal and the Planetarium.

Croque Madame Patio

Nightlife and Restaurants

On the whole, Palermo Chico is a quiet residential barrio and you won’t find the bars and nightclubs representative of Las Canitas, Hollywood and Soho. That said, there a handful of cafés and restaurants worth a look.

Croque Madame (Libertador 1902). Part of the Museo Nacional Arte Decorativa, the restaurant’s classy décor befits its location. Ask for a window seat upstairs for views of Plaza Republica de Chile or sit on the patio. The French-inspired menu is full of delights, including quiches, vol-au-vents and, of course, croque madam.

Le Pain Quotidien (Salguero 3075). This Belgian bakery chain is a cracking spot for breakfasts of croissants and muffins, baguettes and soups, coffees and juice. Stop by and join the neighborhood housewives around the communal table or head upstairs and make use of the free WiFi.

Le Pain Quotidien - Palermo Chico

Patricia Villalobos (Castex 3327). The well-to-do love the concept of high tea in Buenos Aires and this small café in the back streets of the barrio is a great place to join in the ritual. All the porteño favorites are available: medialunas with quince, dulce de leche alfajores and chocotorta. It’s often full but you can order to takeaway and sit in one of the nearby plazas.

Rond Point (Figueroa Alcorta 3009). Occupying a prime corner spot with views towards Recoleta, the restaurant’s glass façade does its classy vibe justice. In fact, time your visit right and you may just rub shoulders with local football stars and politicians. Dinner is a little overpriced but the set lunch menu is a winner – three courses and a hearty glass of wine. Dishes range from lamb sirloin to pink salmon.

Town Homes in Palermo Chico.

April 17, 2013

Where to Eat in Buenos Aires

Don Julio Steakhouse - Palermo Soho
Don Julio
Gurruchaga 2107

A classic and traditional parrilla, it ticks all the right boxes with above-average meat selection and a huge and varied wine list. The décor is rustic-chic, and the leather tableclothes and exposed brick walls stacked up with signed wine bottles add to the warm atmosphere. All in all, this lovely place is an absolute must-visit.

El San Juanino
Posadas 1515

Home-made empanadas, locro ( a thick Argentinian stew ) and lovely local wines.
Order some house wine in a penguino pitcher, a sifón of soda water (and few empanadas if you want a splurge), and you’ll be set for the night.

Baked Empanadas - El Sanjuanino 
Best Choripan
San Telmo, Bosques de Palermo, Costanera

I’m a huge proponent of the mobile choripan carritos: lomo sandwiches, bondiolas and my beloved choripans, my favorite spots in the city to get frisky with some dirty street food sausages are on the Costanera Sur (Mi Sueño & Alameda Sur), El Rey de Chori &Nuestra Parrilla in San Telmo and Puestito del Tito in the Bosques de Palermo.

Choripan - Buenos Aires 

Oui Oui
Nicaragua 6099, Palermo Hollywood

A longtime Palermo brunch favorite, Oui Oui still offers pretty solid breakfast specials including my personal favorite, the Tony: eggs benedict, potatoes and coffee or tea for 42 pesos. Croissants, baguettes, salads and pain au chocolate, all listed on the blackboards. Get there early-ish on Sundays, or be prepared to queue.

Benedict Eggs - Oui Oui 

Mark’s Deli & Coffee House
El Salvador 4701

Order an icy lemonade or loiter over coffee at this bright and pleasant corner spot; On a sunny weekend day, call ahead to nab a table on the pavement among the chattering Argentinian girls and their dogs.

La Crespo
Thames 612, corner of Vera StreetPalermo

Bagel cravings are hardly ever satisfied in Buenos Aires, but here is one place that’s got it right. La Crespo’s version is packed with the house smoked salmon, green onion cream cheese, red onions and capers, all on a home-made toasted sesame seed bagel. La Crespo also serves up house specialities like knishes, strudel and goulash at affordable prices. The hot pastrami sandwich is a must. It’s the closest thing you’ll get to the real Jewish deli deal in Buenos Aires.

Santa Fe 5299, Palermo Hollywood
Marfa’s Delivery include: Wraps, sandwiches and veggie burgers are all in the 30 peso range. My usual order (to share between 2): Teriyaki chicken wrap + broccoli, red pepper veggie burger + soup of the day.

San Martin 941.

Inside this tiny, cheerful space, owner Paulo and his family weave their magic, managing both charm and serve clients with a menu that’s colourful and imaginative as the lighting and furnishings that adorn the restaurant. The menu changes regularly but it’s the classics like the lomo Dada, the rib-eye steak, the salmon and guacamole dips that continue to stand out. Chilled lagers, good cocktails and a fine boutique with list complete a very pretty picture.
DADA - Downtown Buenos Aires 
Thames 1101, Villa Crespo

Very popular Middle Eastern / Armenian restaurant that is a favorite for the Armenian community, locals, families and tourists. If you like food, and are in Buenos Aires for a good amount of time, hitting up Sarkis is kind of obligatory. Order the Belén salad (eggplant, roasted red pepper, almond, golden raisin mix), Lamb or beef kafta complete (shlong in yogurt sauce), chicken kebab, tabbouleh, babaganoush, and stuffed grape leaves. Don’t order: Falafel or hummus, unless you like peanut buttered-garbanzos.

Falafel - Sarkis 

Falafel One
Araoz 587, Villa Crespo
Arguably one of the best falafel spots in the city, this tiny comida arabe kiosco-sized spot serves a mean falafel, shawarma, tabbouleh, yogurt sauce and all the fresh vegetable fixings at extremely accessible prices. The owner is from Syria, and knows a thing or two about Middle Eastern cooking. Prices are in the 20 and 30 peso range.

January 16, 2013

Paying Argentine Reciprocity Fee


                                               Argentine New Reciprocity Fee

Argentina had instituted a reciprocity fee in late 2009, charging passport holders from the US, Canada, and Australia a fee to enter Argentina through either of Buenos Aires’ airports.

Requirements affecting US, Canadian, and Australian citizens

But at least my payment gets me unlimited entries to Argentina for ten years for a sum of $160. Canadians, on the other hand, pay $75 per visit (unless they’re coming and going from bordering countries, in which case it covers multiple entries), and Australians pay $100 for unlimited visits for one year.

The newest innovation — an online payment system — eradicates the old pay-cash-at-the-airport regine, and means if you don’t pony up online, you’re not getting into Argentina. The system goes into effect as of October 31st, 2012 for flights to Aeroparque, and December 28th, 2012 for flights to Ezeiza.


Effective from: October 31, 2012 (Aeroparque) and December 28, 2012 (Ezeiza).

The National Immigration Agency (Dirección Nacional de Migraciones) has added a new form of payment of the reciprocity rate (visitor visa – rate for Americans of USD$160), through the Provincia Payment System. Until now, this fee was paid upon arrival at the airport (either Aeroparque or Ezeiza). Effective October 31, 2012 for arrivals to Aeroparque and effective December 28, 2012 for arrivals to Ezeiza International airport, all U.S. tourist or business visitors must pay the reciprocity rates (USD$160 for Americans) with their credit card through the on-line system.

After these dates, cash payments will NOT be accepted at the airports.

How to pay the fee

To pay, go to the website, register, make your payment, print the receipt. and bring it with you to the airport in Buenos Aires, where it will be scanned and you can enter the country. Since the system is not yet in effect, it’s too early to say whether or not it works smoothly.

How to pay the reciprocity fee on-line:

1) Enter the web site 
www.migraciones.gov.ar or www.provinciapagos.com.ar of Provincia Pagos and register to start the process.
2) Complete the form with the corresponding personal and credit card information.
3) Print the payment receipt.
4) On arrival in Argentina, this printed receipt must be presented at Immigration Control. The receipt will be scanned by the Immigration officials, the information will be checked, and the traveler's entry to the country registered.


One thing the online payment system should do is speed up the immigration process for the non-MERCOSUR lines at the airport. Ezeiza’s continued expansion, including the opening of terminal C in December 2011, have stressed the already overwhelmed facilities, often leading to long lines to enter the country.

When I paid the fee in early March of 2010, it took me an hour and fifteen minutes to clear immigration…though part of that was my failed argument that as a permanent resident of a MERCOSUR country, I shouldn’t have to pay the fee.

Important Information and FAQ:

  1. You will have to pay Argentina's $160 reciprocity fee in advance, on line, by credit card. You won't be able to do it on arrival.
  2. Credit cards that are accepted: Visa, Master Card or American Express.
  3. The fee is only collected at EZE and AEP for international arriving flights, not on land crossings such as Iguazu or Bariloche. Any departure fees from EZE are already added into your international ticket. There are departure fees that must be paid at Calafate and Trelew airports (possibly others), but they are minimal.
  4. The Chilean fee is good for the life of the passport, not yours! Once the passport expires, so does the coverage of the fee. For Argentina the fee is good for 10 years even in an expired passport. Note this is for a USA passport as terms vary by nationality.
  5. Note that the Argentine website says only prepaying for BA airports, but from the 7th of January 2012 you must prepay online for any entry point into Argentina; any land border or other airport. The exception is cruise ship passengers who will pay starting mid-year.
  6. Bear in mind that if you visit Colonia del Sacramento you will need to print your receipt and bring it with you to Buquebus Ferry Port. Colonia del Sacramento is located in Uruguay. You will go through migratioons to reach Colonia and once you return to Argentina you will be requested your receipt so that you can enter Argentina Again. In case you don’t have the receipt with you, you will be asked to use the computer, go on line and pay the fee again.
If you need further information or if you have doubts, do not hesitate to contact us and ask your questions regarding your forthcoming trip to Argentina.