The most expensive real estate In Buenos Aires might be reserved for the elite of Argentina but, ironically, only the dead. It might sound like an odd place to visit but La Recoleta Cemetery became my favorite stop in Buenos Aires. If our trip was longer I probably would have returned daily with coffee in hand to just stroll and take it all in. The cemetery began as holy grounds but after the practice of using churches for burials became outlawed.. the first public cemetery of Buenos Aires was created in the vegetable garden of the convent. The elite thought: (I quote our tourguide from our second visit) If I can’t be buried close to my God then I will bring my God close to me! These “graves” are so much more than just that, vaults, mausoleums, tiny ornate churches; I couldn’t help be be impressed with the level of excess and vanity that was so important to all of these people even after they’ve passed. It’s all about the legacy. There are over 6400 mausoleums and the architecture is a such a mish mash resembling Gothic chapels, charming homes, Greek temples, little boutiques and some so modern that they look like ATMs haha! Maintenance is all up to the families so while most are kept in immaculate condition, we did spot a few abandoned grave-sites with broken glass and garbage thrown about.
^^^Is that a bank?! lol!
This massive 14 acre cemetery is a true necropolis organized just like a city with streets signs, blocks, and even a town square. A quick walk down any of the passageways at La Recoleta will have you rubbing elbows with Argentina’s rich history (& the plain rich!): ex-presidents, celebrities, politicians, Napolean’s granddaughter, & the most famous and visited tomb: Eva Peron. Yes, Evita! Evita’s final burial here was extremely controversial and a slap in the face to Argentina’s high-society that opposed her so much during her time. She is buried with her family under her maiden name, Duarte. You can’t miss her site, just look for the crowd paying their respects!
Enjoy the photos!
Rest in Peace
We Expect the Lord
If you didn’t catch the fashion film I did of Waseem for Frank & Oak a couple weeks ago make sure you check it out because we shot it in the cemetery 🙂 I’ve queued it up to the right timecode for ya: