This couple found the key to having an endless summer and a full and happy life.
Updated: May 29, 2020
PLEASE GIVE US A BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF YOURSELVES ( ORGIN, TRAVEL, WORK, LIFESTYLE, ETC.)
We are both in our ‘60s, and from the NE United States; married for eight years, and it was on a trip to Argentina for our honeymoon that we began coming to Buenos Aires yearly. Our careers have been in the arts, and while Karen is now retired, Ken is able to work from home, electronically, when not residing in the States. We split our time equally between the U.S. and Argentina—endless summer!
HOW DID YOU HEAR ABOUT AND DECIDE TO VISIT THE CALCHAQUI VALLEY OF NORTHWEST ARGENTINA?
On our second trip here, I asked Ken, “Before we return to the States, is there any place you really want to visit?”
Without hesitation, he replied, “Salta!”
Our honeymoon trip had included a visit to Mendoza, as we were fond of Argentinian wine, but he had been hearing about the wine growing in the NW, and so we booked a four-day trip to Cafayate, staying at Patios de Cafayate. Ken is also a huge fan of the American SW, and was eager to see how its counterpart in Argentina compared.
AFTER YOUR INITIAL VISIT WHAT CAUSED YOU TO BUY PROPERTY IN ARGENTINA?
After our visit to Cafayate, we began to seriously consider buying property in Argentina, and the only question was: in Buenos Aires, or Cafayate? It was clear we would be returning yearly, so the idea of owning a home appealed to us. After much back and forth, we decided to ‘start’ in Buenos Aires, where we now own an apartment in San Telmo, all the while keeping an eye on Salta Province, which we return to visit twice each year. We are in love with the desert, the mountains, the wine, the tranquilidad! We stay in different places each time (even once in Tolombón) to get a better idea of where we eventually would like to buy our second home in Argentina.
YOU SEEM TO HAVE THOROUGHLY EXPLORED THIS AREA. WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE AND/ OR MORE UNIQUE EXPERIENCES?
Let’s begin with the breathtaking beauty of Ruta 68, the road in to Cafayate from the Salta airport. The first time we did it, we had no idea what to expect, and our mouths were literally open the entire way! We have made that ride so often, and never once has it looked the same!
We made a big mistake though, in thinking we wanted to ‘see the countryside’ and drive from Buenos Aires to Cafayate via Córdoba. Two days of nothing to see but soybeans; however, we did have to go through Tafí del Valle in Tucuman which redeemed the whole ordeal (almost).
HOW DO YOU TYPICALLY SPEND YOUR TIME WHEN YOU ARE HERE? WHAT ARE THE ELEMENTS OF LIFE HERE THAT KEEP BRINGING YOU BACK TO THE CALCHAQUI VALLEY EVEN THOUGH YOU HAVE A HOME IN BUENOS AIRES?
Where to start?! It depends on where we are staying, of course. The last time (this past January), we did new things. We took a guided hike through an area off of Ruta 68 for three hours, which was amazing. We also hired a 4 x 4 (and driver) to take us to Colomé Vineyard for a tour/tasting, museum visit, and lunch. It was quite the scene getting there, as the rivers were overflowing and flooding Ruta 40, which is unpaved starting north of San Carlos, a bit north of Cafayate.
Ken loves to take long walks into the foothills to see the burrowing owls, and Karen likes to swim at the Camping Grounds swimming pool in town. On each visit, we never fail to visit Domingo Molina bodega, and sit beneath the trees for a tasting. And we make multiple visits to Pacha, our favorite restaurant.
DO YOU SEE YOURSELVES WITH A LONG TERM FUTURE HERE? WHY?
Yes, we continue to accrue information with each trip, which hopefully will come together in a purchase of a second home in the Calchaqui Valley. We will know it when we see it. In the meantime, we are having a great time, and consider ourselves hardcore semi-regulars!!
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