Thursday, November 19, 2009

jet lag, go away!

Jet Lagged? Brazilian nutricionist and biochemist, Patricia Texeira is presenting for Park Hyatt - Palacio Duhau a new, healthy living menu. Patricia creates soothing blends of organic products, that fight body pains and feeling exhausted after those long flights. The menu includes a full description of the ingredientes used, their benefits, as well as suggested times in which to take the magical potions, for better results.

Organic market at Duhau

The objective of this market was to show all products and services related to organic activities in Argentina. I wanted to post these photos before, but well, here they are. I tried all kinds of delicious food, and my favorite - organic dulce de leche! I also loved the tasty Malbecs from Finca Alma in Mendoza and bought this really nice llama-hair scarf.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Karl Lagerfeld & Claudia Schiffer in BA

I guess the piles of golden hay spread all over the Grand Palais in Paris for Chanel's 2010 spring show (and Chanel's Fall 2009 campaign, shot in Lagerfeld's country house) were not enough for Karl! Argentina's vast & beautiful estancias , were undoubtedly a great choice for a little more romanticism & country flavor.
First photo from

Karl Lagerfeld and ex-super model, Caludia Schiffer, walking around San Telmo, Buenos Aires, before heading to the countryside for the shooting of the new Chanel campaign.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Heartless thieves!!

Yesterday, I was having lunch with three friends at "Como en Casa" and they stole my handbag. Ironically, this ex-convent, upscale café is called "Just like at Home". Anyway, I only realized I had been robbed when I reached for my bag to pay the bill, and saw that it was gone. I had everything in it... my bb phone, my wallet with drivers license and credit cards, make-up, camera, I guess it's pointless to name everything... everyone knows that a girl practically carries her life in her handbag! which is why I'm so sad. I was telling my friend, it's a symbolic pain, I feel stripped and empty and vulnerable. Although Buenos Aires remains a safe city, these things happen here too. And, they can happen to anyone, anywhere. In this case, it happened in a beautiful, indoor patio in Recoleta, where to be completely honest something like this is truly unlikely to occur. But it did, and I want to talk about it and warn others. Here are some things I did wrong.

1. I was sitting far from the door, but with my back to it (in front of me, two friends facing the door) and my handbag was carelessly hanging from my chair, instead of being on the floor - between my legs where it should have been.
2. I was distracted cause this is a closed place that I've been to like 100 times. It has an indoor patio with gates, there are always many people there, and it was noon...
3. I used my phone a couple of times and put it back in my bag - the heartless thieves probably saw that.

What to do if you get robbed? go to the nearest comisaría (police station) and file the report. Not much more can be done.

More useful information:

Capital Federal Police Phone - 911 [same number for the province, suburbs]

Prefectura (Coast Guard)
Phone - 4318-7558, 4318-7400
Address - 2011 Av Macacha Guemes 150

Tourist Police
Phone - 4346-5748
Address - Corrientes 436, Capital

Here's what the establishment did for us:

NOthing! In fact, the waiter told us that this happened before many times. He even mentioned that a person had once used a knife? that's scary. What's even scarier is that "Como en Casa" have done nothing about it. No security cameras, no security people, no warning to their clients (like other places who ask that you take care of your bag) or, sometimes put a thinggy on the chair, so that you can strap your bag to it. Nothing.

What are some general precautions you should take to avoid being robbed?

1. If you are visiting, make sure you leave all valuable things in a safety box at your hotel or rented apartment / villa. Make a copy of your passport and carry that, if needed.
2. Don't fall for the mustard thing, we all know about it. It's an old trick. If someone tells you you have mustard on your jacket, sweater, etc. do like Johnnie Walker, and keep walking!!
3. Don't wear flashy stuff that calls attention upon you.
4. Be careful with your camera.
5. When sitting in a restaurant, bar, coffee shop, always face the door, and be extra careful about your handbag /backpack or whatever you have to be careful about.
6. If sitting in one of those side-walk cafés be super, super careful as you are (obviously) more exposed.
7. As in any big city, just be aware.

I'm sure most people know the above, but just in case.

What will I do about this unfortunate episode? for one thing, be more careful. I've never been robbed before as I'm usually - and naturally- paranoid, but experience has a way of teaching us, doesn't it? I was a mess yesterday, but today I've been thinking that had I been a little more cautious, this could have all been avoided. And, although losing so many things that matter is a real pain, we always have the possibility to learn from our mistakes, and start over. Which is why I'm going to do errands now. I've already canceled all credit cards, phone, etc. Guess I'll continue by getting my ID back.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Andy Warhol, Mr. America in Argentina

Andy Warhol, Mr. America opened on October 22nd at Malba in Buenos Aires. This is the first time so many of his works (170) show here.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Jose Ignacio

Spent last weekend at Arbol in Jose Ignacio, Uruguay. I sometimes think how lucky we are to have such an amazing place so near. I love going at this time if the year, when you can relax and spend time with friends, but without all the crazyness of the high season. Not that Jose Ignacio gets too crazy in the summer, cause it doesn't... (except for the occasional White party, or Chandon, whatever) but for non-stop nightlife there's always La Barra... still, JI gets pretty full, and you have to make reservations for dinner (or even lunch!) and maybe stand in a line for some trivial things like getting a magazine at the kiosk or buying some chapstick at the drugstore... that kind of thing... October, November, and early December on the other hand, are sooooo... nice. The weather is amazing (well, we did get a cold and rainy day) but it was so great!! the perfect excuse to stay in, sleep, eat, sleep, eat a little more, watch a movie, etc. go visit someone, play pool, read a little, whatever you don't do when the sun is out! and if you like kite surfing, then this is a good time to do it!


Monday, October 5, 2009

Welcome to the Jungle!

Loi Suites opened it's doors in Iguazú. The new, luxury hotel located inside 600 virgin hectares of the Iryapú jungle in Misiones provides the perfect base for exploring both the Argentinean and the Brasilian side of the Iguazú falls.

Large suites connected by bridges and floor-to-ceiling, glass windows provide an intimate connection with the natural surroundings. A Namasthé spa built around ancient rocks, is the ideal place for some serious pampering after a day of explorations and activities in the area. The hotel has a pier in the Iguazú river, perfect for those who (like me!), enjoy kayaking.

The design is austere and beautiful, using materials from the area, warm, earthy colors, and exquisite furniture brought from Indonesia.

There is a pool side restaurant surrounded by whispering trees, great for dining al fresco and afternoon cocktails.

Last and most importantly, the service is great! this is one of those places where people greet you by your name, and go to great lengths to make sure you feel at home.
A magical place for adventure and relaxation!

Loi Suites is located 15 minutes away from the falls, 20 minutes away from the airport and just 5 minutes away from Puerto iguazú.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Del Potro wins the 2009 US Open !!

At age 20, Argentinean player, Del Potro beat Federer, the best player in the history of tennis, after putting on an admirable fight, at the US Open, on September 14th.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Argentina Going Green?

I'm on twitter now, and I recently RT'd a person who posted a link that said How Green Is Your Country?

My response was: "Not too green but we're trying".

We are trying. There are several organizations and individuals such as Sustentator, Green Cross Argentina, Patagonia Expedition Race, etc. that are currently making huge efforts to help promote change in Environmental behavior in Argentina. However, the following points show the need to continue working, and the importance of addressing some serious issues:

1. The vast majority of people in Argentina have still no consciousness of what "green" really is. Some think it's about going to a park, or being out in the countryside riding horses, watching polo, having a mate or (a kind of tea made with herbs) which by the way is green in color. lol! Sounds fun, no? and trust me, it is. When we say "necesito verde" meaning "I need green", it's this that most people talk about, the countryside and all of that...
2. If you walk around the streets in Buenos Aires, you'll see that porters wash the sidewalks with huge buckets of water, throwing water all over the place instead of using a mop, which would in turn save water, not waste it. Oh, and the sidewalks would get clean all the same, right?
3. Sadly, many people in Buenos Aires (not to mention the provinces) still think that throwing a coke can out the window is ok. Yes, I did say a can. And every time I see this, I feel very disturbed. Last time I saw this, I was walking on the street with my friend, and I really wanted to go get the can. She prevented me from doing it, to stop me from getting run over by a bus. Yet, I felt a big need to go and get the can. Instead, I kept walking and looked back at the squashed can . Sigh..
4. There is no such thing as separating trash in different recipients. People just do not do this. Glass, paper, cans, plastic - you name it, it all goes into the same place, it's put out, and then it's picked up by trucks, who take the trash far away from the city of BA, and dump it - as it is - in an open space, very near lower- income areas where people live. WARNING: living close to mountains of unprocessed trash is hazardous to your health. Hard to swallow, no? it is... but the truth sometimes hurts.
5. Regardless of what's being said, there are only three green developments in all of Argentina. One of them is in Mar del Plata, a second one in the city of La Plata and a third one in Buenos Aires - For the past year, Curiocity Travel has been working very hard on a third development in Patagonia, Argentina (a Green Lodge). As it turns out, there is a lot of red tape and financial issues, but we are determined to make it happen.
6. Did I mention that people print like crazy here?
7. Plastic bags..
8. I don't want to go into buses and 70's cars polluting the air with fumes, and noise pollution, beyond words.
9. Mass Tourism does not help either. Perhaps people in the travel industry (that have the capabilities) could focus on affluent travelers whose premium spending on vacations support the social development and ecological conservation of the host communities.

Patagonia and other places away from the big cities, are a different story, and people here do care for the environment. In fact, Patagonia is considered one of the destinations with the World's Cleanest Air. Also, waters are perfectly clean... you can drink from the clear lakes, swim in the rivers... the air is fresh... people have energy-saving habits, and in places such as Villa la Angostura, they have strict laws regarding cutting trees, construction, etc.

If you have any comments regarding why else you consider we are not a Green Country, or what we can do to improve our friendliness and mercy towards our environment, please post your thoughts here! Thanks!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Aldo Sessa celebrates 50 years of photography.

Aldo Sessa celebrates his passion for image with a photographic exhibition at the Centro Cultural Recoleta, composed of over 100 photographs of Argentinean landscapes, his world trips, tango and portraits, among others. Saw it today. Loved it!

Sessa photographed by Bruce Webber in 1995
- La Nacion.

Friday, August 28, 2009

La Coca

For those of you who don't know her, Isabel Sarli, nicknamed La Coca, is a retired Argentine actress, model and a sex-symbol of the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s.

Sarli was discovered by filmmaker Armando Bo after she became Miss Argentina in 1955 (who she married) and became the star of his films, starting with El Trueno entre las hojas in 1956. She became an international Latin American star, filming in Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay, Mexico, Panama and Venezuela, and films like Fuego (1969 film) and Fiebre (1970) reached the American and European markets.

The new campaign of the drink Fernet 1882 at the Flower Park (Plaza de la Flor) displays 1,882 images of the sex symbol.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Viggo Mortensen's Argentine Poetry Anthology

You know him, right? he recently presented an Argentine poetry anthology put out by Perceval Press, the small publishing firm he founded.

Mortensen, who spent his childhood in Argentina, is a big fan of local, soccer club San Lorenzo, and wore a team jersey to the presentation of “Nueva Poesia Argentina” (New Argentine Poetry) a compilation of work from a variety of Argentinean writers.

The anthology, presented at the Spanish Cultural Center in Buenos Aires, includes poems by Washington Cucurto, Mario Arteca, Francisco Garamona, Maria Medrano, Gabriela Sacone, Ana Wajszczuck among other young Argentine poets.

“I hope this book is a success so we can publish another title that includes other poets from the ‘‘90s Generation,’” Mortensen said.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Estancia Cristina - El Calafate, Patagonia

The New York times called it "the ultimate indulgence" and to be honest, we agree. Our clients have covered much of the world, and they have all been fascinated by the extreme beauty of this remote paradise in Patagonia. Sadly, part of the lodge recently caught on fire, and Estancia Cristina will be closed until January 2010. We are very sorry about this event, but we have been told that they are working and re-building, and that they will be receiving guests again soon.
In the meantime, please do contact Curiocity Travel, for other suggestions of beautiful estancias & boutique hotels in El Calafate, and throughout Argentina.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Greetings from Salta & Jujuy!

I just got back from the northern Argentinian provinces of Salta and Jujuy. Aside from the strikingly beautiful sceneries, dramatic change of landscapes within minutes - try driving from Salta to Jujuy via the camino de la cornisa. You'll pass from being in the desert with giant cacti, to being in the middle of the jungle on a one-lane, curvy road where cars come and go from both sides! yes, it's a bit stressing, and a little dangerous, but it's so worth it!! and you can always get a driver who knows the road well. If not, just honk your horn in every curve. But don't forget to, cause there is no room for two cars for most of the way. And those cliffs are intimidating. But, where was I? oh, the sceneries, the food, the colonial architecture, beautiful churches, wine, it's all magical... the gorgeous towns surrounded by the Andes mountains... not to mention the Quebrada de Humahuaca - a World Heritage site where there are still indigenous towns that have been a major trade route for over 10,000 years! once again, it was incredible to be there... to meet people from these towns. I say go North! It's like being in another world. If you would like to visit remote, Andean towns that regular tourists do not have access to, inquire about new ranges of excursions to enjoy more authentic experiences, stay in one of our villas or recommended boutique hotels, or if you would like to help the local host communities, contact one of our dedicated travel experts. There are plenty of rewarding ways to make a difference between wine tastings, trekking and horse riding in the mountains, and a soothing spa treatment.