Sunday, July 19, 2009

La Recoleta

La Recoleta is the most famous cemetery in Buenos Aires where all the famous people of the country are buried. There are other cemeteries in major capitals of the world like those in Paris and Milano where some of the mausoleums are also elaborate works of arts. La Recoleta was founded in 1822 and has 4,800 tombs and a living population of cats asking for affections.
Below is one of the may streets in the necropolis.

Next to the cemetery is the Basilica del Pilar, dating back to 1716 in the Baroque style. The clock seen above the bells is of British origin. It not really a big church so the Basilica connotation is not really appropriate when compared to the original Basilica del Pilar in Saragoza, Spain. Some of the external wall are covered by murals showing panoramic views of Rio la Plata.

The styles of the mausoleums is diverse to meet all tastes and some already customized to meet the most demanding personal requirements. There was one already made for me.

I found the tomb below one of the most impressive with the figures to human size scale. The black marble provides great contrast with the gold halo and the white marble statues.

The mausoleum of Iliana Crocciati de Szaszak was unique. She died in 1970 in Italy victim of a snow avalanche that buried the hotel where she spending her honeymoon. the dog was her favorite pet. The epitaph written by her father is heart breaking but yo will have to go there to read it.

One of the rewards of traveling is the connections that one made among the various places visited. While in Ushuaia early in this trip I visited the prison there that it is now a museum. One of the cells was occupied by Simon Radowitzky, an Ukranian anarchist who assassinated the chief of police in Buenos Aires, Coronel Ramon Falcon, while riding an open carriage. Below is Falcon's burial place. Simon was the only prisoner to escape from the prison in Ushuaia although he was later caught in Chile and returned to the prison. He eventually was released and proceeded to join the Civil War in Spain. Afterwards he migrated to Mexico where he worked in a toy factory until his death in 1956.
And of course, one cannot visit this cemetery without visiting the most famous Argentine personality of the XX century, Isabel Peron. It is is the most visited site in the whole cemetery.


SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

What a sad story of the young girl killed on her honeymoon Jose. For an anarchist, Simon sure does have a smart burial place.

Tiago said...

I lived in an apartment in buenos aires in 2008 and I do recommend visiting the Recoleta´s cementary. I went there 3 times in order to know it all. You should try to find a guide that explains you the story and dedicated to whom the graves were constructed to fully appreciate the walk.