ISSUE 3  |  Secret Gardens

A Secret Courtyard Garden in Buenos Aires

January 23, 2015 2:30 PM

BY Sophia Moreno-Bunge

Behind an unassuming stone facade and through a corridor covered in lush vines and plants, you will discover a quiet and charming courtyard in the heart of the city. The space, the brainchild of Buenos Aires-based interior designer Pablo Chiappori, is a design maven’s dream–a secret garden with a tea shop, a florist, café, and a home wares store. Plus a wine bar:

Photography by Sophia Moreno-Bunge for Gardenista.

Above: The courtyard entrance, behind an old facade.

The courtyard is home to a café called Decata, a flower shop called Tata, a teashop called Tealosophy, and a home decor store called Paul. The space is located in the heart of Palermo Soho, a very green neighborhood of cobblestone streets lined with shops, restaurants, and bars.

Interior designer Pablo Chiappori has infused the space with the effortless and elegant sensibility that distinguishes Argentina’s best design. Argentines have mastered the union of the old world and the rustic: combining their Spanish and French ancestry with the wonder of their varied South American landscapes: from the jungles of Iguazú, to the dramatic glaciers and mountains of Patagonia, to the Pampa’s vast farmlands. At Paul, you will find linens in every neutral tone imaginable; delicate wools from the South of Argentina; wood and metal furniture, and beautiful light fixtures, among other things.

Above: I was told that the space used to be a coal yard; the cart that was once used to transport packages of coal from the street to the studio is now decorated with plants, beckoning passersby. I can’t get enough of those huge black doors.

 Above: Hanging plants from Tata Flowers line the corridor.

Above: Potted plants from Tata

Above: The corridor gives way to the courtyard; the Decata Café stand is on the right, Tata Flowers and Tealosophy are on the left, and the entrance to Paul is at the back end of the space.

Above: The stand sells delicious pastries and coffee, and Tealosophy teas (I tried a lemongrass hibiscus tea that was incredible).

Above: The perfect place to relax in a busy city.

Above: Tables fill the courtyard.

Above: The structure that houses Tealosophy and Tata Flowers reminds me of a greenhouse.

Above: The flower shop, where I saw lots of orchids that seem to do well in the humid Buenos Aires climate.

Above: Tealosophy’s nook, lined with walls of teas; they had so many interesting flavors, including White Peony.

Above: Paul has two stories of amazing home goods; the second floor also houses a small wine bar that lets out onto a terrace.

Above: I love the industrial windows and doors used throughout the spaces. 

Above: The view from the terrace.

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Above: Looking for the secret courtyard? It’s at Gorriti 4864, Buenos Aires. There is a street number on the large black door at the entrance–it’s hard to miss, but just in case, it’s between Gurruchaga and Armenia.

Planning a trip to Buenos Aires? For more of Argentina’s signature style, see The Coolest Flat in Buenos Aires on Remodelista. And visit Sophia’s uncle at home in Garden Visit: A Hanging Orchid Garden in Buenos Aires.