FROM MY BOOKSHELF….

wpid-20150702_084511.jpgThis was my selection for a recent trip I took. I tend to pack more books than clothes, because God forbid one gets stuck waiting for their plane without something to read! (and don’t judge me on the Mills & Boon, one needs variation in their selection).

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Buenos Aires and Montevideo – A Book-lover’s Paradise

If you love books (which I’m going to assume most of you do), then the one thing you must add to your bucket list is a trip to Argentina and Uruguay. Not the most obvious of choices, I know, but trust me when I tell you that you will not regret it. Here’s why.

The beauty of South American bookshops

The beauty of South American bookshops

Last month I spent 10 beautiful days in Buenos Aires and Montevideo generally feeling very good about myself. The reason being that almost every single street corner housed a bookshop and I felt very literary and intelligent while I browsed through their offerings. From run down, second-hand fares to slick branded chains and cozy independents, there are bookshops for everyone in these two cities. Here I will tell you about my top 3.

We stumbled across Libros del Pasaje on a sunny Monday afternoon in Palermo Soho (the bohemian neighbourhood in Buenos Aires) whilst trying to find somewhere to eat – a task that was developing into quite the adventure.

Palermo Soho, Buenos Aires

Palermo Soho, Buenos Aires

Libros del Pasaje

As soon as I entered I had one of those ‘WOW, this-is-where-I-belong’ moments.

Libros del Pasaje, Buenos Aires

Libros del Pasaje, Buenos Aires

If you’re not a hardcore books person, then I’ll give you room to cringe, but the rest of you know what I’m talking about – the floor to ceiling shelves, the rolling ladders, the cozy chairs, the creaking stairs, the coffee shop nestled in a corner…. It was just perfect.

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Though it was my last day in Buenos Aires, I couldn’t resist spending a couple of hours in the sunny conservatory eating my cake and reading my book. A rare moment of serenity in the bustle of Buenos Aires. This place is a real treat.

Reading books, eating cake, drinking coffee = bliss

Reading books, eating cake, drinking coffee = bliss

ldp2My second favourite spot is in the old part of the city of Montevideo, Uruguay. It’s just off Plaza de Independencia and would be difficult to miss with it’s large, airy windows.

PV Restaurant & Lounge

PV Restaurant & Lounge

It’s strange because I don’t know the name of the bookshop, but the cafe upstairs is called PV Restaurant & Lounge. I had some beautiful scones there, washed down with this uh-mazing hot chocolate (it was surprisingly windy and freezing in Montevideo). I swear it had massive chunks of real chocolate just melting all over the place.

pv

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The beautiful stained glass windows, the grand staircase leading you up to the first floor (or, alternatively, there’s an ornate, old-school elevator that can crank you up); it’s all so elegant yet so cozy and welcoming.

Now for the final bookshop (which is back in Buenos Aires), set in an old theatre and is just simply so breathtaking in its grandeur.

El Ateneo Grand Splendid

El Ateneo Grand Splendid

El Ateneo Grand Splendid is just so very cool, with the box seats set up as private reading nooks and the main stage having been converted into a cafe. What’s not to love?

El Ateneo Grand Splendid

El Ateneo Grand Splendid

What made me sad about all this is that we don’t have anything even remotely like this in London. Amazon has taken over the publishing world and all the independents have closed their doors, leaving us with the likes of Waterstones and WH Smiths. Life is unfair. Make up for that by taking a trip to South America.

Too Many Books

I’ve developed a (bad) habit where I constantly buy books, both old and new, and don’t quite get round to reading them. My bookshelves have long been too full for new company, so these new books now sit in piles around my bedroom floor. I sometimes thumb through them and dream of one day actually reading them. I hate it when life gets in the way of a good book. I have to get my reading on.

Source: MGW Pics 3D