galeria crawl: galeria larreta

August 7, 2007 at 2:10 pm Leave a comment

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Florida (the street, not the state) is a nightmare. Traffic trickles along, pickpockets take advantage of dazed tourists, and prices are almost always double what they should be.

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But there’s a safe place among the mayhem in Galería Larreta (Florida 971). Right off of Marcelo T. Alvear, Galería Larreta is like the rebel sister who shaves her head and listens to the Delta 5. She refused to conform and look like the other stores on the strip; instead she’s going to open up a bunch of indie design-oriented stores, the rest of calle Florida be damned.

Joyería Contemporánea (Local 4b), with its mix of avant-garde designs (everything from silver and stones to leather and felt are used), is one of the first stores you’ll see, and perhaps the stateliest. Artistas Jóvenes Argentinas (Local 26), by the San Martín entrance, exhibits works that range from traditional to modern. The common denominator here is that all pieces have been made by young local artists.

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Head upstairs and you’ll find the true gems of Galería Larreta, Patio Sur (Local 39) and Tiendas Kubera. At the former, there are beautifully feminine pieces, like a delicate ivory trench coat with black detailing for $240 pesos, or precious Irregular Choice-style flats for $180 pesos. Across from Patio Sur is Tiendas Kubera, a space for independent designers. Everything, from the screen printed t-shirts to the leather purses, is made by hand by young local designers. Don’t miss the flower pins; not only are they perfect for spring, but similar ones have been spotted on the runway of it-designer Philip Lim.

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If you’re hungry, Galería Larreta is a far superior pick to the overpriced cafes in the area. Carrousel (Local 7) is a cute, albeit kitschy, café with sandwiches for $6 pesos and a lunch special of several courses for $25. If you’ve about had it with meat (and honestly, who hasn’t craved a plate of nice fresh greens while in Argentina?), Ensaladas Argentinas (Local 45) will hit the spot. $6 pesos gets you a medium salad with a choice of four ingredients, and $7 pesos gets you a large salad with a choice of six. For a mid-afternoon snack, don’t miss Murasaki’s happy hour. From 16:30 until 19:30 (Monday through Friday), sushi is 20% off.

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There are a couple odd-balls in the place, like the store for musical theater geeks and an antique military paraphernalia store. But if anything, they just give Galería Larreta more personality. Which is what makes it so great: it’s a breath of fresh air from store after store of the same old thing (i.e. leather jackets and “cashmere” sweaters). Step inside, take a few deep breaths, and remind yourself that it’s going to be okay, that Florida will not make you die a little bit inside.

Galería Larreta, Florida 971/San Martín 954.

Previous Galeria Crawl entries.

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Entry filed under: art, fashion, food, fotos, galeria crawl, indie, shopping, stores.

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