From Europe to La Cumbre: a century-old mansion that houses an inn and a restaurant reopened
CORDOBA.- La Baguala It was built in 1920, its original owners Mauricio Andrei and Minima Andrei they came from Europe a The top for the construction of the railway, like all the immigrants of those years, especially the English. Today the mansion -after many years closed- is a boutique restaurant and inn. The city of the Valley of Punilla from Córdoba was declared a year ago “national historic town” by presidential decree.
The reconversion of the place was in charge of Mayu Pilsel and her partner Ignacio Dematteis, who added Franco Giandana and chef Juan Camps. The house is three kilometers from the center of La Cumbre, on the way to the Rosary Stay, to whose construction the Andrei family were also linked. There, in 1924, Felicia Johnston de Grasset he began to make jams with his British recipes in copper pans and took the first step towards the oldest alfajores factory in Córdoba.
The Baguala is of English architecture, like all the constructions of that time. “Almost all of them have the same infrastructure, the same blacksmiths and architects – Pilsel tells THE NATION-.He is from a family friend and with my partner we always fantasized about what could be done there. With the pandemic, the need arose to leave the city of Córdoba and we gave the project a concrete form.”
The move included renovation and remodeling without modifying the original characteristics of the construction. The goal was to enhance it. They kept a good part of the old furniture -except the beds-, they recovered the park that has a hundred-year-old grove and the terrace garden.
The house has a chapel which, due to the characteristics of its walls, is the oldest of buildings. “There were no religious images -in the house there is a picture made with painted ceramics of the Virgin of the Rosary-, but the older people remember that marriage ceremonies were held there and there are testimonies of religious activities in the ’20s”.
The four double rooms of the inn have names and colors inspired by local herbs: Peperina, in blue; Carqueja, in dry green; Marcela in terracotta and Suico, in opaque yellow.
The venture includes a shop-workshop, where in addition to selling handicrafts from the area (where the fabrics and ceramics of the hotel and the restaurant are from) , produce the soaps and infusions that are used in the restaurant and the inn. “The idea was always to work with the local, from the artisans to the food producers,” says Pilsel. The garden is already producing and what it produces is used in our menu, just like the fruit trees”.
The menu varies according to the season, always prioritizing local and seasonal products. “Signature cuisine”, defines Pilsel. The letter highlights a “choco pine”, a moist chocolate cake with local pine mushroom ice cream; the river shrimp empanadas with cheese; the broken lasagna with beet leaves from the garden and crispy corn and a false chia and peanut couscous.
Pilsel’s life has always been tied to La Cumbre; his mom Alejandra Juarez I believe in solitude Caraya monkey reserve, where there are 170 primates, in addition to other animals that are there after being rescued from homes. The Carayá, native to northwestern Argentina and the South American jungle, are the most illegally traded mammals in Argentina. The reserve -360 hectares open to the public- is very close to La Baguala.
Staying or enjoying a meal at La Baguala also allows you to visit the area. In Cruz Chica -a few kilometers from the center- there is The Paradise, the house where he lived Manuel Mujica Lainez; the Reydon Hotel which dates back to 1922 when it was created by Raynor John Runnacles and his wife Kate Jane Walford and was a 1600 “stone and thatched” stay. From the ’20 there are several constructions of the architect León Dourge , all neo-Andalusian style.