A Beaux Arts landmark set on the grounds of the Four Seasons, La Mansión evokes a time when Buenos Aires was referred to as the “Paris of South America” – a city obsessed with French culture, fashion and architecture. Now hailed as one of Argentina’s finest residences from this time period, La Mansión’s offers seven one-of-a-kind suites, each affording a rare opportunity to live the city’s history first-hand.
But La Mansión also tells the story of a family. Félix de Álzaga Unzué – dashing heir to a vast South American ranching fortune – built the masterpiece as a wedding gift for his young bride, Elena Peña Unzué. The couple lived at the home of Félix’s parents for four years, until La Mansión was inaugurated in 1920.
Building commenced in 1916, at the height of the First World War, and was completed shortly after the conflict ended. Though importing materials by sea during wartime was a real challenge, no expense was spared. Black and white Carrara marble rises from the grand staircase, with priceless stuccos to rival those of Buenos Aires’ opera house covering the walls and columns of the entranceway. And Elena Peña Unzué’s bathroom, currently part of the Presidential Suite, is encrusted from top to bottom in a variety of Italian marbles.
Though the jewel was located in one of Buenos Aires’ most exclusive areas, as the decades wore on the building slowly deteriorated. When the multimillion-dollar Four Seasons restoration commenced, a decision was made to redesign the interior, adding spacious ground-floor reception lounges and seven suites on the first and second floors. We think the Unzués would be pleased with the results.