Modern Architecture Walking Tour, Buenos Aires (Self Guided)

Over the course of the first half of the 20th Century, a new form of modern architecture emerged in Buenos Aires as a result of social and political changes. This modern architecture was encouraged by advances in technology and engineering. The style is typified by diversity of form, complexity of structure and the volume of metal and plastic used. There are many examples of such modern architecture around the city, including many with significant local involvement.
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Modern Architecture Walking Tour Map

Guide Name: Modern Architecture Walking Tour
Guide Location: Argentina » Buenos Aires (See other walking tours in Buenos Aires)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 8
Tour Duration: 4 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 9.6 km
Author: irenes
1
El Faro Towers

1) El Faro Towers

The El Faro Towers are twin skyscrapers located in the Puerto Madero neighborhood of Buenos Aires. At the time of completion in 2004, it was the tallest structure in the city and continued to be the tallest until 2008.

The plan of building the El Faro Towers began in 1999 when developers began rejuvenating the dilapidated Puerto Madero dock area of the city. The building was designed by the Buenos Aires firm of architects, Dujovne Hirsh and Associates. The plan was approved in the year 2000 and construction began in 2001. The façade and engineering was performed by the engineering firm Obras Metalicas. The steel and concrete modernist style building was completed in 2005

The El Faro Towers consists of 160 luxury residential apartments. Each tower is 520 feet high and is connected to the other by four sky bridges. A reading and relaxation lounge is located within the highest sky bridge commanding spectacular views of the city, the river and the nearby eco reserve. The structure has a floor space of 615,600 square feet, 46 floors above the ground and two floors below the ground. Amenities within the structure include an outdoor swimming pool, spa, gym, tennis court, solarium and two underground parking facilities for residents and guests.
2
Banco de Londres y América Del Sur

2) Banco de Londres y América Del Sur

The Banco de Londres y América Del Sur or the Bank of London and South America building is one of the finest examples of Brutalist architecture in Buenos Aires. From 1997, the offices of the Mortgage Bank or Banco Hipotecario are located here.

The Banco de Londres y América Del Sur or BOLSA was incorporated in England as the London Buenos Ayres and River Plate Bank in 1862. The headquarters were located in Buenos Aires and the bank had interests in other parts of Argentina and South America. In 1959, the bank located a piece of land in a street corner of the Central Business District of Buenos Aires. The location was strategic because it was here that over half of the financial activities of Argentina took place. Architect, Clorindo Testa won a design competition and created this unique structure that has become a major attraction in the city.

The Banco de Londres y América Del Sur building is a grey concrete and glass structure with extensive canopies. The design was inspired by the Loggia della Signoria in Venice. The structure is so designed that a person sitting inside the bank feels as if he or she is outdoors. The interior space is designed to integrate with the exterior.
3
Torre Fortabat

3) Torre Fortabat

The Torre Fortabat was designed by a famous Italian architect and plays an eminent role in the city’s architectural landscape. Its architectural elegance recalls the French neoclassic models. The tower is also a real symbol of modernity, designed as an intelligent building using the latest technology. Opened in 1993 by a large corporation, it functions as one of the country's major power centers.
4
Galerías Pacífico

4) Galerías Pacífico (must see)

The Galerías Pacífico is a covered shopping center famous for its fresco-covered ceilings by leading Argentine artists. It is located between Florida Street and Cordoba Avenue in Buenos Aires.

The Galerías Pacífico building was constructed in 1889 for a large store called the Argentine Bon Marche. The beaux arts building was designed by architects, Emilio Agrelo and Roland de Vacher based on the design of the Parisian store, Le Bon Marche. Later, it became the first home of the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes. In 1908, the British Buenos Aires and Pacific Railway Company bought the building for its offices. The purpose of the company was to build a railway line through Chile to access the Pacific Ocean and the building was renamed Edificio Pacifico.

The Galerias Pacifico was remodeled in 1945 with the addition of a cupola and ceiling frescoes by notable Argentine artists including a magnificent central panel by artist, Antonio Berni. In 1987, a dungeon was found under the building where the military junta that ruled the country between 1976 and 1983 tortured prisoners. It was declared a historical monument in 1989 and became a high-end shopping arcade in 1991. Four ceiling frescoes were added in 1991 by well known Argentine contemporary artists including Guillermo Roux.

Why You Should Visit:
Worth a quick view of the cupola and frescoes or staying longer to shop, grab a bite at the food court, stop for a coffee/ice-cream...

Tip:
If you're going to shop, keep in mind to look for the signs that say "tax-free" so you can request your tax refund before leaving Argentina.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 10am-9pm
5
Edificio Kavanagh

5) Edificio Kavanagh

The Edicifio Kavanagh is one of the first skyscrapers in Buenos Aires and has become an iconic landmark of the city. It became one of the city’s National Historic Monuments in 1999.

The Edificio Kavanagh was built between 1934 and 1936. The skyscraper was commissioned by a wealthy heiress Corina Kavanagh who invested her entire inheritance in the construction of the building. The design was by architects, Gregorio Sanchez, Ernesto Lagos and Luis Maria de la Torre. The architectural style was modernist art deco and the structure has a towering form with gradual reductions. It is 120 meters high with 29 floors and 150 residential apartments. Corina Kavanagh lived in the largest apartment that occupied the entire 14th floor for many years. The American Institute of Architects gave their prestigious award for the design of the building in 1939.

When the Edificio Kavanagh was completed it was the highest structure made of reinforced concrete in the world. It was also the tallest building in South America and remained the tallest for many years. All the apartments were fitted with state of the art amenities including modern plumbing and electrical fittings. The upper floors have terraced gardens with spectacular views of Buenos Aires, the river and city parks.
6
Sofitel Buenos Aires

6) Sofitel Buenos Aires

The Sofitel Buenos Aires is a luxurious five star hotel located in the quiet Retiro neighborhood of Buenos Aires. Opened in 2003, the complex was designed by Argentinean architects Daniel Fernández & Associates and embellished by Pierre-Yves Rochon. The building's Art-Deco design is very interesting, with diagonal braces for security purposes and an arched roof made of glass that is decorated with black and white marble.
7
Museum of Latin-American Art of Buenos Aires (MALBA)

7) Museum of Latin-American Art of Buenos Aires (MALBA) (must see)

The mission of this art gallery in Buenos Aires is to promote contemporary Latin American artists and to display the brilliant and vibrant 20th-century artists of Latin America. It houses the vast, diverse and valuable collection of Argentine business magnate, Eduardo Constantini.

The Museum of Latin American Art, popularly known as MALBA opened its doors in 2001. It is run by the nonprofit organization, Foundation MALBA. The unique building in which the gallery is housed was designed by Argentine architectural firm, AFT architects. The permanent collection has over 200 artworks by 20th-century artists and temporary exhibitions from all over the world are held by the museum. Collections are constantly updated and the MALBA promotes the works of new contemporary artists across Latin America.

Collections at the MALBA include works by Diego Rivera, Frida Kalho, Xu Solar, Jorge de la Vega and the Argentine painter Antonio Berni. The art collection features works by well-known artists from Cuba, Uruguay, Colombia, Costa Rica and Venezuela. Exhibits include painting, sculpture, photographs, prints and sketches. The second floor has a theatre where classic and contemporary films from Argentina and around the world are filmed. The gift shop stocks books on Latin American Art in English and Spanish and also has a range of souvenirs like postcards, jewelry and notebooks.

Why You Should Visit:
Relatively small museum but collections (both permanent and temporary) are great.
Contemporary, defying, interactive, happening...

Tip:
Entrance is no longer free but worth the (small) investment.
Great little coffee shop (right outside) and gift shop (inside).
If you plan to eat after looking around, book a table on your way in.

Opening Hours:
Thu-Mon: 12-8pm; Wed: 12-9pm
8
Le Parc Tower

8) Le Parc Tower

Le Parc Tower is a high end, luxury residential skyscraper located in the Palermo district of Buenos Aires. It was the tallest structure in the city between 1996 and 2002.

Le Parc Tower was designed by architects, Mario Roberto Alvarez and Associates. It is 158 meters high with 51 floors. It has become an iconic structure in the skyline of Buenos Aires and is clearly visible from boats sailing down the River Plata. The structure is designed to give security and stability with minimal use of land. It is surrounded by an 8000 square feet green space and the nearest structure is 60 feet away. This gives the residence a feeling of privacy amidst the crowded city.

Le Parc Tower commands spectacular 360 degree city views. On a clear day one can see the Uruguayan coast and the delta islands of the River Plata. It has forty three floors with two apartments on each floor. Floors 44 to 47 have duplex apartments that cover an area of 700 square meters. All apartment have luxury high end amenities. There are two covered car parks and a helicopter landing space on the top. At the back of the building is a unique rounded mechanical shaft that runs up the length of the structure.

Walking Tours in Buenos Aires, Argentina

Create Your Own Walk in Buenos Aires

Create Your Own Walk in Buenos Aires

Creating your own self-guided walk in Buenos Aires is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Famous Squares Walking Tour

Famous Squares Walking Tour

Buenos Aires is a wondrous city that will surprise you both by its beauty and by its wide range of attractions, with lots of landmarks, historical buildings and pretty squares to see. Why not take this walk through Buenos Aires and enjoy its numerous plazas (squares), parks and other top attractions.

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.3 km
Gay Nightlife Walking Tour

Gay Nightlife Walking Tour

You want to get on the town? To feel the freedom of love pulsing in the air? Than Buenos Aires’ gay nightclubs are calling on you! It is the epicenter of the world’s nightlife; the music and entertainment never stop here! Don't leave the city before you visit at least all of these top attractions:

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.7 km
Popular Art Galleries and Cultural Centers Walking Tour

Popular Art Galleries and Cultural Centers Walking Tour

Buenos Aires is a fabulous cultural center, both for Argentina and for the whole of Latin America. Its galleries and cultural centers are not only spaces for art to be exhibited, but also for new and original art works to be created. In these centers you can meet old masters giving lessons to young talented artists, and participate at different workshops and courses offered in the arts such as...  view more

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.3 km
Souvenir Shopping Part 1

Souvenir Shopping Part 1

It would be a pity to leave Buenos Aires without having explored its specialty shops and bringing home something truly original. We've compiled a list of gifts and souvenirs, which are unique to Buenos Aires, that a visitor might like to purchase to reflect their visit.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.5 km
Acclaimed Art and Culture Museums Tour

Acclaimed Art and Culture Museums Tour

The arts and cultural museums of Buenos Aires are home to thousands of beautiful art works and other artifacts of national culture. Among them are paintings, graphic works, sculptures, archaeological finds and old currency. Between them all, the museums represent a treasury of fine art, with many collections of cultural objects and lots of great exhibitions.

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.6 km
Museums For Children Self-Guided Tour

Museums For Children Self-Guided Tour

By nature, children are very newsy. They want to get to know and see as much as possible. Children's energy is the key to success, they'll get inspired to see all these museums, to get in touch with the history of this beautiful city, the city of Buenos Aires. Here is a list of attractions you should take into consideration when visiting Buenos Aires:

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 7.4 km

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Tips for Exploring City on Foot at Your Own Pace

Whether you are in Buenos Aires for a quick stopover or have a few days to see the city in more detail, exploring it on foot, at your own pace, is definitely the way to go. Here are some tips for you to save money, see the best Buenos Aires has to offer, take good care of your feet while walking, and keep your mobile device – your ultimate "work horse" on this trip - well fed and safe.

Taking Care of Your Feet


To ensure ultimate satisfaction from a day of walking around the city as big as Buenos Aires, it is imperative to take good care of your feet so as to avoid unpleasant things like blisters, cold or overheated soles, itchy, irritated or otherwise damaged (cracked) skin, etc. Luckily, these days there is no shortage of remedies to address (and, ideally, to prevent) these and other potential problems with feet. Among them: Compression Socks, Rechargeable Battery-Powered Thermo Socks for Cold Weather, Foot Repair Cream, Deodorant Powder, Shoes UV Sterilizer, and many more that you may wish to find a place in your travel kit for.

Travel Gadgets for Your Mobile Device


Your mobile phone or tablet will be your work horse on a self-guided walk. They offer tour map, guide you from one attraction to another, and provide informative background for the sights you wish to visit. Therefore it is absolutely essential to plan against unexpected power outages in the wrong place at the wrong time, much as to ensure the safety of your device.

For these and other contingencies, here's the list of useful appliances: Portable Charger/External Battery Pack, Worldwide Travel Charger Adapter, Power Converter for International Travel Adapter, and Mobile Device Leash.