Marvel at a tower building inspired by the poem Divine Comedy and enjoy unrivaled aerial views of Buenos Aires’ cityscape.
In a city blessed with impressive architecture, the Palacio Barolo stands out as being among the most spectacular buildings in Buenos Aires. From the exterior showcasing an eclectic mix of architectural styles, to the opulent decorations of the interior and the panoramic views from the rooftop lighthouse, the palace is one of Buenos Aires’ must-see attractions.
Palacio Barolo takes its name from Italian-born entrepreneur Luis Barolo. He commissioned Mario Palanti to design a building inspired by Italian poet Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy. Upon completion in 1923, the 328-foot-tall (100-meter) building was both Argentina’s and South America’s tallest. Today, it is predominately an office building but the guided tours provide a great insight into its history and architecture.
To fully appreciate the exterior, start on the opposite side of the street. From here, you’ll be able to admire a fusion of art nouveau, Asian-Indian revival and neo-romantic styles, among others. There are references to Dante throughout the building. The lobby, for example, represents Hell. Look for floor patterns that depict fire and walls adorned with ornamental demons and dragons.
To see more of the interior, join a 45-minute guided tour. Narrow staircases and elevators will take you past floors representing purgatory and heaven. Peer over atriums, which provide views to the top and bottom of the building. A major highlight of the tour is the Hindu-style copola and rooftop lighthouse. Step out onto small balconies to enjoy panoramic city views, most notably of Congreso Nacional and the Casa Rosada. Tours take place on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays.
From Wednesday to Saturday there are nighttime tours, when the lighthouse is spectacularly illuminated. These tours include a complimentary glass of wine. Find full tour times and prices on the building’s official website.
Situated on Avenida de Mayo, Palacio Barolo is a short walk from Buenos Aires’ city center. The metro and several public buses stop close to the building’s entrance.
There is no fee to enter the Palacio Barolo’s lobby. Purchase tour tickets from the booth located in the lobby.