Published on March 22nd, 2010 | by Mark Chesnut
HOTEL REVIEW: Trompe L’Oeil at the Novotel Buenos Aires
You’re not seeing things: Patio 378, the restaurant at the Novotel Buenos Aires.
If perhaps you’ve had a few drinks at the hotel bar, you might be forgiven for thinking that you’re seeing things when you stroll over to Patio 378, the restaurant at the Novotel Buenos Aires. But what you see is what you get: an eye-catching trompe l’oeil at the first-ever Novotel brand to be opened in Argentina by French hotelier Accor.
The hotel, which debuted in September 2009, employed a local Argentinian artist to create the splattery painting in the hotel restaurant — using a laser to trace the image onto the various pieces of wall and furnishing, and then painting it in. A small symbol on the lobby floor marks the spot from where you can get the full view of the work — which upon closer study contains bunny rabbits darting in and out of trees.
The bright, green decor is in line with the overall theme of Patio 378, which is named after the 378 plants that grow on the “ecological wall” behind the outdoor swimming pool (which, unlike most pools, is created with black tiles, giving the water a more natural yet off-beat dark effect).
The green concept also comes into play in the contemporary, mildly minimalist guest rooms, where clean white walls are accented with cheery green throw pillows and hiply mod white tongue chairs.
The location, on the busy Avenida Corrientes, is ideal for business travelers as well as anyone looking to be close to major tourist attractions like the obelisk at Avenida 9 de Julio, or perhaps all the Broadway-style musicals just down the block from the hotel. Rates start at about $116; if that’s not in your budget, you can also check out the Ibis Buenos Aires Obelisco, which opened next-door at the same time as the Novotel (it’s one of Accor’s more budget-priced hotel brands). Rates at the Ibis start at about $72, and you can still wander next door to check out that wild painting.