Castles in the Sky

2007.May.21 Monday · 0 comments

in Life

 And you can pretend that it would be different
If it happened to you
But up on the rooftop, it’s a whole other world
And who could see heaven
And not want to stay?”

– from Nobody Knows, by Paul Brady

Cerrito 328

Buenos Aires – You know how you can walk by something time and time again and simply not notice it’s there until someone points it out to you. And you sit there slack-jawed thinking, I walked by this place time and time again and never noticed that, what do I say now? So when a recent thread was posted on a Trip Advisor forum, that mentioned this particular building and it’s, umm, peculiar rooftop adornment, I knew I had to go look. I mean, it’s practically next door to the Obelisco. It’s right there, in plain sight, even with the big billboard partially obscuring it.

The story, as I understand it, is that the house was built in 1927 as a duplicate of the building’s owner’s house out in Mar del Plata. Or maybe it is the house from Mar del Plata – I’m not entirely clear on that part. But in 1936, when the Obelisco went up, the owner, Rafael Diaz, had the house moved to or built on the rooftop of this building at Cerrito 328 where his furniture company was located -it’s actually an L-shaped building that officially is listed as Sarmiento 1113, but let’s face it, no one is looking at it except from the 9 de Julio, or Cerrito, side. The Cerrito side is being renovated right now as a luxury hotel, the Sarmiento side is an office building that seems to house primarily software companies, including, I believe, the local office of Microsoft. It was a place for him to go upstairs and “nap”, his “chalet in the sky”. If you read Spanish, here’s a link to a story about it from La Nacion.

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