National Museum of Decorative Art, Buenos Aires


If you need to escape the traffic, noise, and grime of big city Buenos Aires, the Museo Nacional de Art Decorativo is the perfect reprieve. I visited on a sunny Saturday afternoon, and for a mere 20 pesos (about $1.50) I spent a couple hours in the most tranquil, grand, and beautiful little palace, the house of the Errázuriz-Alvear family. Now, it houses a great collection of antique furniture, paintings, and sculptures, maintained in the style and design of the original house.

IMG_9806IMG_9813

My favorite room was the Madame’s Salon – a rose tinted parlor with ornate tapestries, silk-covered chairs, heavy drapes, and an ancient grand piano. This was wife Josefina’s room – educated in France, England, and Switzerland, she was very interested in art and antiques and as such was responsible for a majority of the pieces in the house. Here, five o’clock tea meetings, painting, and bridge meetings with friends took place.

IMG_9815

Next was the Grand Salon, an expansive room of largely empty space, allowing one to admire the patterned wood floor. A fireplace as tall as a basketball player is featured on one wall, and other walls are covered with tapestries, oil paintings, and armor.

IMG_9817IMG_9819IMG_9821

Behind the Grand Salon is the gentleman’s smoking room – a small salon of muted ivory marble and hushed acoustics.

IMG_9823

As you progress through the dining room and up the stairs, the beauty and quality of the architecture is evident.

IMG_9825IMG_9826IMG_9831

An outlier in the palace is the room of son Mato on the first floor. Originally planned to be in the style of Louis XVI, this plan was thrown out the window and Catalan artist Jose Maria Sert was hired to decorate the room. The result is a mix of neobaroque walls and furniture & styling of Art Deco.

IMG_9830

Other rooms upstairs are similarly intricate to the main floor, with the most beautiful bathroom – a huge marble tub and a massive dressing table complete with an original silver shaving set.

IMG_9832IMG_9838IMG_9841IMG_9836IMG_9844

On the way out is a treat for geologists – a table topped with the most amazing red marble from Italy. 🙂 🙂 For or a cheap and visual treat of an afternoon, check out this great building in the heart of the city.

IMG_9846IMG_9845

Categories: Active Weekends, Running around citiesTags: , , , ,

1 comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: