As part of a unique overambitious project of the time, the hotel gives evidence of the society of a hundred years ago and their vacation preferences.
Lying on the corner of Biarritz and Cairo Streets, the Old Hotel Ostende shows off its almost intact façade. Despite being a hundred years old, it still keeps its dignity. It is a symbol of the social circles that used to visit the Atlantic coast of Buenos Aires in the past.
We went around the building and tried to take a look inside and get deep into the fascinating accounts it has to offer. It dates from 1914, when reaching Ostende was quite a venture. It implied a journey by train, being carried on a cart and finally getting on a small carriage up to the indomitable sand hills.
In the mid 1940s, the presence of some famous writers was notorious. They would get there from Buenos Aires and abroad and spend long seasons at Thermas Hotel, as it used to be known back then. Its rooms welcomed Adolfo Bioy Casares and his wife Silvina Ocampo, as well as the French writer Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. Anecdotes of these visits have been printed on objects the hotel still takes pride in showing.
On the shores of the Atlantic
Turn back time
A privileged area
Facade looks almost intact
First hotel spa
At present, guests may choose to stay at an old room with period furniture and closets. Likewise, they also may opt for rooms featuring all the comfort and technology of today.
Its construction remains solid in spite of having been buried under the sand hills repeatedly. When that happened, guests were invited to enter the venue through the first floor windows.
The elegant atmosphere of its pub, restaurant and halls keep their original style with some Belle Epoque ornaments.
The garden is harmoniously shady, ideal to spend time reading under the trees and having dinner in the fresh evenings. The natural vegetation of the sand hill provides shelter from the sunshine and creates spaces for rest at the private beach bar.
The Old Hotel Ostende gave us the feeling of traveling back in time, thinking about the books that were inspired there and the distinguished guests that chose this redoubt on the shore to dream, say and write.
Mónica Pons Pablo Etchevers
See more points of interest in Ostende