18 september 2015
A Break in Santiago
At first sight, Santiago is not a particularly inspiring city. It doesnt have the european elegance of Buenos Aires, nor the bossa nova sensuality of Rio and has no beaches. It is urban and commercial yet once lost amongst its streets its many traesures are revealed. … here are three that Clara Lefort has identified.
In the heart of Bellavista, lies a spanish colonial style home with great heritage. Recently renamed The Aubrey, this mission-style mansion built in 1927 by the Duran family (an important chilian political dynasty) journeyed through the 20th century experiencing geopolitical and industrial scandals, power sagas and meetings at the top. This luxury boutique hotel was renovated in 2007 by Marc Cigana who saw a diamond this diamond in the rough during a vacation. In order to preserve its heritage, each room, staircase, floorboard, moulding, panelling and door frame has been renovated in accordance with strict rules but includes a contemporary touch with black leather chairs from Chile’s Santiago Valdés, black Tom Dixon lamps and a mirror bar in the restaurant.
Constitución 299 – 317, Bellavista +56 2 940 28 00.
At the heart of the new residential estate of Vitacura, lies Boragó a rare South American gem. Led by chef Rodolfo Guzman (who trained under Adoni Luis Aduriz at Mugaritz in Spain), The restaurant could be the regional brother of Noma or all other scandinavian culinary lab. Passionate for seasonal products, both local or unknown, Guzman harvests, digs up and tracks them just like a gold digger. Using flowers from the Andean plains, crustaceans cooked the traditional way, smoked wood or pureed salicornian berries pruned in patagonias bays, chilian cuisine – which is often poor, bland and nourishing is reborn. Served in a hand crafted stone bowl or on lava coloured plates, these dishes follow one another like a metaphor for nature.
Av. Nueva Costanera 3467, Vitacura +56 22 953 8893.
Francisca Sutil is a chilian painter whose work has featured at the MoMA in New York and is reflection of her name : discreet and attentive to the slightest variations in colour. Under her brush, colours overflow and radiate, stay quiet and then expload. Worthy heiress of Mark Rothko, this chilian artist creates and orchestrates symphonies of colour and tone. Whether working with oil paints or gesso (a plaster and/or gypse based binder used in the Middle Ages which when mixed with animal glue was used to coat the wooden boards used by painters), each canvas is a journey and a sensory colour exploration. Her work can be seen as an oxymoron and a tribute to surrealist poet Paul Eduard and his ‘Terre Bleue comme une Orange’ with cobolt blue, scarlet orange, sun beams and blood spears all overlapping yet working together in a calm tempo yet to a frenzied pace. Between anger and serenity, Francisca Sutil seizes colour in destitution.