A visit to Café Tortoni often features high on a Buenos Aires itinerary. Come to this coffeehouse to sip a hot drink, admire elegant furnishings and artwork or watch a tango. Established by a French immigrant in 1858, it is the oldest and most famous café in Buenos Aires.
As soon as the doorman opens the grand brass-handled doors you’ll begin to appreciate the café’s 19th-century charm. Wood-paneled walls, marble tables, chandeliers and a stained-glass ceiling present a sophisticated and bohemian ambiance. Sit at a table and imagine the time when Argentine literati would convene over a cortado (espresso with warm milk). Among many famous former visitors are legendary tango singer Carlos Gardel and Argentine writer Jorge Luis Borges.
Browse the artwork scattered around the main room, including a painting by local artist Augusto Marteau and a life-size bust of Borges. Check out the Sala Eladia Blázquez, a billiards and game room named after a tango singer who dedicated a song to the café.
Try the traditional Argentine café food, such as croissants, toasted sandwiches and cheese selections. You must taste the simple, but special churros con chocolate; dip the fried pastry into the rich, not-too-sweet hot chocolate for a memorable treat. You may find prices here slightly higher than at other restaurants, but you are paying for a bit of history with your food.
Walk down the narrow staircase to La Bodega, an intimate theater where from Monday to Friday you can watch twice-daily tango shows. On weekends, shows take place in the Sala Alfonsina Storni. Adorning its walls is a series of paintings that make up the Homenaje al Tango (Tribute to Tango). A complete schedule of events is available on the café’s official website.
Café Tortoni sits on Avenida de Mayo, one of Buenos Aires’ most recognizable streets, and is just a few blocks from Plaza de Mayo. The café is easily accessible via public buses and the metro. A hop-on hop-off tourist bus also stops nearby. The café is open daily. Visit in the morning or late in the evening to avoid lines and tour groups.
Located in El Centro, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Cafe Tortoni, Plaza de Mayo, and Casa Rosada. Cabildo and Buenos Aires Metropolitan Cathedral are also within 10 minutes.
Located in El Centro, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Gran Rex Theatre and Obelisco. Teatro Colon and Buenos Aires Metropolitan Cathedral are also within 10 minutes.
Located in El Centro, this hotel is steps from Republic Square and Obelisco. Teatro Colon and Buenos Aires Metropolitan Cathedral are also within 15 minutes.
This family-friendly Buenos Aires hotel is located near the airport, steps from Palace of the Buenos Aires City Legislature, Plaza de Mayo, and Cabildo. Casa Rosada and Buenos Aires Metropolitan Cathedral are also within 5 minutes.
This boutique hotel is in the heart of Buenos Aires' business and fashion district, and within walking distance of Teatro Colon and Avenida Corrientes.
This family-friendly Buenos Aires hotel is located near the boardwalk, within 1 mi (2 km) of Pontifical Catholic University of Argentina, Casa Rosada, and Plaza de Mayo. Presidente Sarmiento Frigate Ship Museum and Cabildo are also within 1 mi (2 km).
This family-friendly Buenos Aires hotel is located near the airport, within a 10-minute walk of Cafe Tortoni and Cabildo. Plaza de Mayo and Casa Rosada are also within 15 minutes.
This family-friendly Buenos Aires hotel is located near the airport, within a 10-minute walk of Florida Street and Plaza San Martin. Teatro Colon and Obelisco are also within 15 minutes.