36 Hours at Atempo Design Hotel
Stay in Hollywood, hang in Soho.
That’s what I always tell friends that are coming to visit. Despite the flood of galleries, bars, restaurants and shops that have overtaken Palermo Hollywood and its equally hip neighbor, the former has been able to maintain the tranqui attitude of a residential barrio that the busier Soho area seems to have lost. The neighborhood is simultaneously young, chic, homey and laid-back.
And the Atempo Design Hotel is a reflection of those two ondas colliding – with just the right mixture of hip art installations, contemporary decor, relaxed service and a homey atmosphere.
We arrived on a warm Thursday afternoon and light bathed nearly every open interior of the hotel, illuminating the art work that graced every nook and cranny. The artwork plays an important role in the overall look of the space – which feels just as much like a small art gallery as it does a place to lay your head. When the hotel’s owner, a painter, began taking classes with essentialist artist Heriberto Zorrilla he proposed the artist to house his works in the hotel as a permanent collection of sorts. The works of explosive lines and colors are both chaotic and oddly calming, and lend perfectly to the hotel’s modern furnishings and sporadic sprinkles of colorful ornaments.
Take your pick between a suite or loft. I stayed in a loft on the fourth floor. The size of a spacious apartment, this large open design room had a gorgeous two floor window that washed the room with fresh natural light that shone through two beautiful flowing white curtains. The small balcony had a nice view of the neighborhoods urban canopy, with splashes of green leaves and red rooftops.
The colors were mostly subdued whites and browns, with spatters of color like the blue and green accessories on the lush king-sized bed, or the purple three panel oil painting by Zorrilla that hung prominently in the living area.
Waiting patiently on the coffee table was a bottle of Chardonnay by Piedra Negra and a welcome note. Feeling a bit lazy, we ordered a picada and enjoyed a bottle of Malbec reserve by the same winery. The Chardonnay was complimentary (we’d drink that later) but the kitchenette also came equipped with little chocolates and wines of our choosing. The wine was excellent and paired perfectly with the generous spread of cheeses and meats.
We were lucky to arrive on an evening that Atempo was hosting the first edition of their Atempo Cine series. Once a month the hotel plays an arts related film showing, for the inauguration we got to watch Big Eyes – it provided the perfect solution to us wanting to do something (this was the first night of our staycation!) but feeling lazy (it was the end of a work day). Curling up in a blanket by the pool to catch a movie while enjoying some burgers and a glass of beer was just what we needed. Martin, the receptionist, let us know that the hotel regularly hosted events, including a regular wine tasting and occasional art interventions.
With a bit more energy, we loaded up on our complimentary breakfast and headed out to enjoy the neighborhood. Hollywood has exactly what I look for when urban traveling, art and food, and a ton of it. We borrowed the hotel’s bicycles and glided through the the tree lined streets and over to nearby Mercado de las Pulgas. After a quick nap, we headed to a tour with Buenos Aires Art Tours to join their Gallery Walk, which met in nearby Villa Crespo and visited a handful of galleries in the area. For dinner, we asked the hotel clerk for his recommendations and he sent us next door to Cerveceria Nacional for a cold pint of beer before heading a few blocks to my new favorite pizzeria, Siamo Nel Forno, where I chowed down on traditional Neapolitan pizza cooked in a wood burning oven imported from Italy. For a simple nightcap, a whiskey sour at nearby Festival was exactly what I needed. With our tummies filled, we headed back to that luxurious king sized bed and slept in long enough to enjoy an hour in the heated pool before checking out at noon.
tranqui calle Arevalo
day of art with Buenos Aires Art Tours
dinner at nearby Siamo Nel Forno
Don’t Make Me Leave
I wish we could’ve stayed longer, in fact, I wish I could have moved right in.
Atempo Design Hotel