Buenos Aires is often described as the Paris of South America…with the glaring difference that it is considerably less accessible from London. In the past this has included going via Paris, Madrid or Sao Paulo, with the added stress and time of a two leg long haul flight and the ever increasing chance that your carefully packed suitcase will not be waiting for you on the other side. In answer to your prayers, last Sunday British Airways reopened their direct flight from Heathrow to Buenos Aires and once again star filled nights of tango, red wine, juicy steaks and flowing mullets are just a few in-flight movies away. Yes Eurostar, you are so passé.
In honour of this Dehouche have compiled their top 5 favourite places for a celebratory drink in Buenos Aires. There is nothing like a really good bar and all the fun that comes with it to get you in the mood for booking that next trip.
The Oak Bar – For Elegant Aperitifs
If there’s one street in Buenos Aires that screams luxury it’s Avenida Alvear in Recoleta. This is where two of the best hotels in Buenos Aires are located, the statuesque Alvear Palace, and the romantic Park Hyatt Palacio Duhau. The road is littered with designed shops where complimentary glasses of champagne flow like water and thus this setting is an appropriate place for our first must visit bar. The bar at the Park Hyatt Palacio Duhau is no ordinary hotel bar, the building itself is part of the 1932 French Palace Duhau, which will certainly give you something to admire whilst sipping on your pre dinner aperitif. The hotel has several luxury watering holes on offer but the Dehouche favourite is the Oak Bar. The walls are lined with panels made of European oak, which were specially carved in the 17th century to decorate a castle in Normandy, France. When the last owner of the castle died, Mr. Luis Duhau bought the panels and brought them to his Palace in Argentina. It is the perfect place to canoodle in, with a wood burning fire and leather wingback chairs. Step into your regal role and head out on to the sweeping terrace to survey the grounds (landscaped gardens) below.
Frank’s- For late night frolics
Taking its inspiration from the time of the Prohibition in America, Frank’s is the ultimate speakeasy bar, only accessible through a telephone box which requires the user to enter the secret password which enables the door to swing open. The effort taken to entering this is rewarded once inside. Frank’s oozes cool and in doing so it attracts the ‘cool’ people to it, the clientèle is often made up of a mix of models and polo players who perch themselves on various seats. Frank’s doesn’t just look good, the cocktails would have you coming back even if the locale was locating its smart address. The bartenders have been well-trained in mixology and Dehouche have it on record that the best drink is their dark rum, Tobacco-laced, honey concoction, but be warned, the Argentines are known to be liberal with their measurements.
Prado Y Neptuno- The Afternoon Bar
When Dehouche is feeling nostalgic for times gone by this ‘Cuban bar boutique’ is the answer. Prado y Neptuno, located in the upmarket district of Recoleta, is the finest cigar bar in Buenos Aires. Run by the lovely Ana with her impeccable English, the bar has been kitted out with vintage furniture and stocks every rum under the sun and, for those who are partial to a good cigar there is no better place to come. Open from 9 am, it is the port of call for those lazy afternoons when all your heart earns for his a minty mojito and a really serious cigar.
Oh… and the clientele is gold-dust.
L’Abeille- The Coolest Cocktails
Tucked down a curving side street Arroyo, l’Abeille is one of the classiest joints in a town that teems with cocktail hotspots. Step through the black lacquered façade to an upstairs smoking room that buzzes with beautiful Portenos, then follow the leopard print carpet downstairs to the cut glass bar for one of the superb cocktails fashioned from rare flowers and even rarer scotch by mixologists in crisp white coats. With cutting edge DJ’s and an elegant selection of bar snacks featuring fresh oysters and Uruguayan caviar, Dehouche heads here on Wednesday’s when things really kick off.
The Oasis Clubhouse-Private Pool Parties
Strolling the boutique lined streets of Palermo on a balmy Sunday may have you longing for a refreshing dip in a pool and minty ice cold mojito. Fear not, for the answer lies just around the corner in the form of The Oasis Clubhouse. A private members club set in a pimping private property on Costa Rica in Palermo- you need to be on the list before you are given the address. Once inside, take in the original Andy Warhol prints, swing on bar stools at the candy stripped cocktail bar or lounge by the long oblong pool. The Sunday afternoon pool parties have become the stuff of legend in summer months, and if the night rolls on to the early hours in true Argentine style, you can always bed down in one of the 3 grand master suites that occupy the upper floors of the house. Dehouche clients get the inside track for entrance to the closest thing to Shoreditch house in the Southern Hemisphere.
If that doesn’t have you dreaming of fun-filled nights, we don’t know what will.