EO Goes to Buenos Aires:
Tango with the Unexpected

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Location:  Buenos Aires, including LaBoca District; San Telmo district; Recoleta district; Faena Arts Center; Puertas Cerradas pop-up restaurants; Estancia La Figura; El Zanjon de Grandos; above the city (by helicopter); Evita Museum; Estancia La Martina (polo ranch); La Ventana Tango Academy; Boca Juniors (soccer club);

Theme: Tango with the Unexpected
Client: Entrepreneurs’ Organization

inspiria organized evening events and daytime tours for EO University Buenos Aires 2013, the networking and career development program offered by the global membership organization. The four-day program also showcased and launched the organization’s newest chapter, in Buenos Aires. Inspiria engaged the international delegation of entrepreneurs, spouses and offspring with 19 custom-designed off-site activities including affinity, recreation, dining and leisure programs.  All programs were designed to showcase elements of local and national life, especially the adaptability and resilience for which the capital city is known. A culinary program showcased the “Puertas Cerradas” (“Open Door”) cuisine, the underground restaurants that emerged during the hard times of 2000-2001. Historic and cultural landmarks and venues, as well as sites iconic to Buenos Aires today, were chosen for off-sites.

HIGHLIGHTS:

“Tango Argentino”  Evening of tango music (played on the bandoneon, the Argentine accordion), dance (performed by professional tango dancers) and tango singers, in styles ranging from classical to contemporary, including contemporary electronic and hip-hop variants. Held at the Faena Arts Center.

“Puertas Cerradas” The “Open Doors” underground cuisine developed in Buenos Aires during the turn-of-the-last-century economic recession as scores of suddenly-unemployed chefs turned their homes into private underground restaurants.  We identified and arranged for 17 of these chefs to open their homes to snall groups for one night, and recreate the “Puertas Cerradas” experience. After dinner the chefs discussed their remarkable entrepreneurial experiences during those difficult times, taking questions from a spellbound audience.

Estancia La Figura. We selected this characteristic Argentine cattle ranch about 90 minutes by car outside Buenos Aires.  We offered attendees a sense of life at these iconic ranches by presenting a typical Argentine BBQ with asado (dry beef), chorizos (sausages), and the famous chimichurri sauce. The evening’s entertainment reflected the history and culture of the nation. The North was represented by the Indigenas, the pre-European population dressed in authentic regalia. The East, by a polo demonstration; the West, by its famous wines; the Pampa, or South, by gauchos (cowboys) and their horses; plus, folk musicians and dancers.

"The Life of an Icon". El Zanjon de Granados was the historic location used to present the life and times of Evita Peron in an environment that on the one hand could not be more Argentine and on the other hand was neutral enough to set the frame for this outstanding personality. We created an exhibition on the life of Evita Peron to show the genuine Evita, we used recordings of her powerful speeches, tango music of her era and large-format posters. We covered 4 stages of her life:

- Early years
- Life in Buenos Aires (Tango of the 40s and 50s)
- Life with General Juan Peron
- Her political goals and ideas



OFFERED OFFSITES:

The Story of Evita. Half-day tour of Evita Peron’s Buenos Aires, culminating in a program at the Evita Museum.

Tango workshops.  Half-day Introduction to Tango, taught by professional dancers who had previously performed for the group.

Polo Argentino. A full-day program held at Estancia La Martina, the polo stadium, featuring a group lesson taught by the brother of Adolfo Cambiaso, Argentina’s most famous polo player.

The Boca Juniors. Half-day tour of the world-famous soccer stadium and private visit to the “Museo de la Pasión Boquense”

Belle Epoque Palace Tour. Half-day tour of Buenos Aires’s Belle Epoque distict, including tour of Palacio Errazuriz Alvear and Museum of Interior Decoration.

History of the Mothers of the Plazo de Mayo. Half day tour featuring expert-led discussion of the tragic fate of the desapertidos – the nearly 10,000 people who disappeared during Argentina’s rule by military junta.

El Teatro Colón. Half-day tour of the famous Belle Epoque theatre.

Wine Seminar with Aldo Graziani. Half-day program with Agentina’s celebrity sommelier.

Visit to Historic Uruguay. Full-day program including crossing world’s widest river into neighboring Uruguay, with tour of historic Colonia del Sacramento.

Golf. Full-day program at one of Buenos Aires’ top golf clubs, including pro group lesson.

Argentine cooking class. Half-day program taking place at one of the Puertas Cerradas visited previously. Participants learned how to prepare traditional dishes such as savory empanadas and sweet alfajores.

Buenos Aires Highlights. Neighborhood walking and bus tours were offered of La Boca, San Telmo, and Recoleta neighborhoods.

River Delta Yacht Cruise. A chartered private luxury motor yacht offered a full-day tour of the Tigre river.

Helicopter excursions. We arranged 45-minute helicopter rides over the city.


Our goal was to create a unique customized program that taps the cultural and historical elements of the destination. As our attendees are all business owners and their families, we sought to animate the history and culture of the region with a particular focus on entrepreneurial business activities. We sought to identify iconic elements of life in Argentina, and translate those into living interactive experiences. For example, our “Puertas Cerradas” program introduced 17 entrepreneurial chefs to our attendees, engaging them in conversations that revealed how they had survived the economic collapse crisis of 2000-2001 by resourcefully tapping their culinary history – a valuable lesson for entrepreneurs.  Similarly, the tango demonstrations revealed how Argentina’s great musical and dance legacy  – the tango – grew from humble origins into the country’s proudest creative product, retaining its essence even while adjusting to changing markets (electronics and hip-hop interpretations). Our program at El Zanjon de Granados (Evita Exhibition) presented the life and times of Evita Peron in an environment that helped illuminate this quintessentially Argentine personality. We sought to show Evita is far more than the figure depicted in the musical and the movie – we used an especially created exhibition as well as singers whom we hired and directed, to portray the genuine Evita, through her powerful speeches, writings, large-format posters and musical renditions.
After a dinner featuring characteristic Argentine foods, we closed the program with a live performance of “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina,” in Spanish and English.