Buenos Aires Travel Planet

Buenos Aires visitor’s guide

Museum of Spanish Art

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Argentina was for centuries one of Spain’s most prized colonies and it is only logical that Argentine culture be greatly influenced by the Iberian roots of the Conquistadors. The Enrique Larreta Museum of Spanish Art is the place to visit in Buenos Aires to see the indelible marks left behind by the Spanish.

The Museum of Spanish Art of Buenos Aires was founded in 1962 in the Belgrano neighborhood of Buenos Aires. The local area is the perfect home for such a museum, with its and bustling urban feel, combined with green spaces and tree-lined streets. The building that houses the museum and its collection dates back to the 19th Century. However, at the time of its construction in 1880, Belgrano was not a part of the city of Buenos Aires, but was rather a small provincial town. This was to be changed by the construction of a National Government headquarters in Belgrano, resulting, in 1887, in the incorporation of Belgrano in the city boundaries. Since then the neighborhood has become dominated with beautiful, old mansions and the Museum of Spanish Art is one of them.


The museum is named in honor of Enrique Larreta, famous Argentine writer from a wealthy aristocratic family. He worked as an ambassador in France and then later Spain where his passion for Spanish history and culture was ignited. The property was given to Larreta in 1916 when he married Josefina Anchorena (from one of the most elite families in Argentine aristocracy). The writer lived in the mansion with his children and then grandchildren until his death in 1961. After he passed away the property was acquired by the city government who were eager to use the home to create a Museum of Spanish Art. This was achieved in 1962 when the museum and collection was opened to the public.

Unusually, the Museum of Spanish Art does not have a permanent collection but instead it organizes temporary exhibitions and events. This ensures that the museum always has something fresh and exciting on display. However, there are some pieces that have been donated by the Larreta’s own family collection. The traditional Spanish suits worn by Evita (Eva Duarte de Perón) also belong to the museum. This beautiful and captivating collection includes the 50 suits that were created especially for Evita’s state visit to Spain in 1947, each representing a different province of Spain.

The architecture and grounds of the Enrique Larreta Museum of Spanish Art is also another reason to visit. The Spanish renaissance style is unusual and colonial, plus there is a traditional Andalusian fountain in the museum’s garden. Take a look at Buenos Aires Travel Guide for more info on museums in the city.

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