“Marcel”, a lovely eco-hotel in Buenos Aires

In a 1898 fully renovated building designed by famous architect Alejandro Christophersen, ‘Marcel de Buenos Aires’ has been welcoming guests since mid 2016.

Renovation

Marcel is a eco-friendly hotel, one of the few in the city. During the complete renovation of the building, the original wooden floors and doors were removed to be restored & reused at its original or different place in the building.

When entering  the hotel through the fabulous 3-metres high wooden front door, you’ll walk up the stairs made of former train beams. The first thing that strikes is the light coming from the inner patio. The floor on the patio as well as on the two roof top terraces are paved with wooden blocks, recycled waste material from the streets in San Telmo. The marble from the original staircase now lies on the entrance floor. The original pinotea floors, still found in a few rooms, were removed to be recycled and re-installed  in Marcelonious, the inhouse small hall for events.

Decoration & Interiors

Marcel features  9 guest rooms and three fully equipped mini-flats. All but one room are numbered with Roman figures, flea-market finds from when its owner Karin was still living in Brussels. The red-brick wall on the patio showcases  former Brussels street lamps, – up-cycled by a local artisan – and metal train boards indicating Belgian destinations.

Metal Boards from the train indication Belgian destinations

A knock on one of the apartment’s iron doorknob, – another Brussels flea-market treasure,- and one of Marcel’s long-term tenants will happily welcome you in.

Former Street lamps up-cycled by a local artist in the patio

Settle yourself in the comfortable vintage couch in the BREUER-flat. Poor yourself a glass from the mini-vintage bar, both of which have been bought at the local flea-market in the barrio of Collegiales.

Drift wood from the Tigre delta has been used to make the bedside tables in the rooms and the tabourets in Marcelonious.

Eco-art decorates the walls. Local artist María Belén Marquez ‘ boats, – patiently made with magazine paper, – were on showcase when this article was written.

The white linen sheets and the bio-degradable cotton flat sheets were an obvious choice. Linnen requires little water to grow and no pesticides and unless bleached or colored, no toxic products are used.

Functioning

It is hard to control what bath products or cosmetics guests at Marcel are using. By providing natural soaps and shampoo, bio-degradable bags for the waste bin, curtain showers made from Tyvek, encouraging guests to drink filtered water from the tap rather than soft drinks in plastic bottles…. Marcel hopes to reduce its ecological footprint in the travel business.

Though recycling is far from being on most Argentine’s mind, Marcel separates waste, recycles and reuses.

Marcel keeps bees, yes ! city bees and the honey harvested twice a year is served over breakfast or afternoon tea time. Even the neighbors were skeptical at first when Karin installed her beehive on the rooftop terrace. Who keeps bees in the city !

Hungry guests can roll their chairs and join at breakfast or dinner table. The food is organic and most of the time vegan and/or gluten free.

Be aware, Marcel is a pet friendly place. Two cats , Leonie and Gucci, when not asleep, will want to get to know you. The hotel welcomes your pets too.

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