Bordered by Buenos Aires neighborhoods Palermo Hollywood to the south, Chacarita to the west, Las Cañitas to the east and Belgrano to the north, quiet and cobblestoned Colegiales is home to gourmet delights, independent fashion designers and tree-lined streets. The small neighborhood appears mostly residential at first sight, but it houses a number of hidden treasures if you know where to look.
| EAT |
Start the morning in Colegiales at one of its French-style bakeries. L’épi Boulangerie is owned by French TV chefs Bruno Gillot and Olivier Hanocq and serves the best croissants aux amandes this side of the Atlantic. Purchase a selection of viennoiserie to eat at nearby green space Plaza 25 de Agosto. A few blocks away, local café chain Le Blé draws in the crowds with its fresh croissants and muffins and generous mugs of café con leche.
At the lunch hour, a line of taxi drivers outside its door marks La Mezzetta as the best pizzeria around. Get slice of its deep-dish fugazzetta, a cheese and onion pie that in this case is mostly an artery-clogging (and delicious) portion of melted cheese.
Newly opened Labor sells fresh meals like caprese salad, roasted Portobello mushrooms and gourmet empanadas to go or eat in at the industrial chic deli. Accompany a meal with a bottle of craft beer or a boutique wine. Across the street, its sister business Café Crisol is a solid lunch or brunch option.
But the title of the barrio’s best restaurant undoubtedly belongs to Astor. Chef Antonio Soriano serves tasting menus of manduque porteño – Buenos Aires grub. The weekly menu reflects the seasons with artfully presented plates and unusual ingredients.
| SHOP |
With Palermo completely saturated with stylish shops, many up-and-coming designers have chosen Colegiales to sell their wares. But you wouldn’t know it by strolling the streets – most are appointment-only showrooms and workshops.
Bastardo BA made its mark with modern backpacks and bags made of cloth and leather and recently released a small line of clothing and outerwear. Vanesa Krongold sells her line at some of BA’s top boutiques, but at her showroom you can buy the brand’s psychedelic prints right from the designer herself. Jewelry designers Julia Alvarez and Catalina Semilla share a workshop and showroom, where they sell their delicate gold and silver pieces and a small collection of household items like hand-stitched pillows.
On the art circuit, cozy Ruby Galeria hosts exhibitions and sells works from contemporary artists. It also carries a small selection of books and ceramics, which, along with many of its small-format art pieces, are reasonably priced and small enough to fit in a suitcase.
| DRINK |
Colegiales goes to bed early in the night, but many of the neighborhood’s night owls flock to Buena Social Club. The artisanal brewery is particularly packed at happy hour and offers a rotating selection of craft brews and satisfying grub like pizza and mozzarella sticks. Centro Cultural Despierta teaches yoga and capoeira classes during the day, but at night it hosts live music and serves vegetarian cuisine and cheap drinks. Don’t miss the Domingos de Jam for free performances from local jazz bands.Buenos Aires