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  • JDB 4,336 posts

    @Biki – those are quite old rates now! I haven’t come across that gelato place – it’s an odd name as it’s the indigenous people’s name for Easter Island. I think people forget that most people’s heritage is Italian rather than Spanish so gelato, pasta and generally good Italian restaurants abound.

    There’s also a fantastic ice cream place (heladería) in the Belgrano area called Gruta.

    Biki 117 posts

    @Biki – those are quite old rates now! I haven’t come across that gelato place – it’s an odd name as it’s the indigenous people’s name for Easter Island. I think people forget that most people’s heritage is Italian rather than Spanish so gelato, pasta and generally good Italian restaurants abound.

    There’s also a fantastic ice cream place (heladería) in the Belgrano area called Gruta.

    Hi @JDB, yep these rates were from December, but was just trying to give some context for different rates i was getting for exchanging US$, using Chase or using WU to send money to yourself.

    Ah interesting fact about the name, thanks! i was a big fan of the chcolate mint flavour. There were lots of Gelato places, but i found this to be my favourite. They also did hot chocolate with a shot of Cognac which was great too

    Reeferman 36 posts

    Many thanks for the advice and guidance – all helpful and appreciated.
    We are hoping to eat in a couple of good restaurants in the Palermo Hollywood area (ie walking distance from the hotel). Have asked the hotel for recommendations – but would welcome any suggestions you may have, of course.

    JDB 4,336 posts

    @Reeferman – always wary of recommendations, so I can only tell you places that we know, like and would go back to! In Palermo, El Preferido is a bit over popular, but for good reason – nothing at all fancy but simple local food done really well, good choice of wines and great staff; we prefer indoors! Also, La Alacena, really good Italian – it’s a bit bad news that the Michelin guide recently reached Buenos Aires and they got a ‘bib’ so the secret is out!

    I think your hotel may recommend Don Julio which many consider to be the best steak restaurant in Buenos Aires but it is now so popular (with both locals and tourists) that it has become too up its own ar** and they like to make people wait so as to keep a queue to show how popular they are. It does have a good ambiance and the food is good.

    In nearby ‘barrios’ Julia Restaurante (in Villa Crespi) is fantastic but nearly impossible to get a table nowadays, in Chacarita, our current favourite is Na Num – Argentinian/Korean food; very unsmart but quite exceptional food that would have a waitlist for months if in London. In Recoleta we like Bis, Roux and Sottovoce.

    Reeferman 36 posts

    @JDB – many thanks indeed for taking the time to put together some ideas based on your experience. I’ll look into them and will no doubt sample a couple during our brief stay.
    Looking forward to it very much! Thanks again.

    jumpersforgoalposts 51 posts

    Morning all.

    Thank you for the contributors to this thread, especially @JDB

    We’re going to Argentina in August 2024 for 2.5 weeks and currently working out an itinerary (I’ll share that later and get some thoughts from the hive mind). My question is just to clarify the currency/payment on our hotel in Iguazu.

    So we want to stay at the Melia Grand for 2 nights and when I go through the Melia website (accounting for the current wonder week promotion), I’m getting the following

    A) WONDER WEEK Non-Refundable Pre-paid MeliáRewards Rate GBP 719.17

    B) WONDER WEEK Flexible pay at hotel MeliáRewards GBP 821.12

    Based on this thread, the best rate will be to pay GBP 821.12 at the hotel using my Nationwide Visa 0% card. Am I correct that I’ll then get 21% vat deducted off the bill, and subsequently get the MEP rate back to GBP?

    Many thanks

    JDB 4,336 posts

    @jumpersforgoalposts – if those are the rates you are being quoted in GBP, that’s probably what you will pay. You can only get the benefit of the MEP rate if the hotel bills you directly in ARS rather than some central billing outside Argentina which might apply on the non-ref rate. I would imagine that the rates you cite already don’t include the VAT. I would note that currently the gap between the central bank rate and MEP is quite narrow but it’s very difficult to predict what it might be in five months time. Ideally you want a price in pesos.

    jumpersforgoalposts 51 posts

    @jumpersforgoalposts – if those are the rates you are being quoted in GBP, that’s probably what you will pay. You can only get the benefit of the MEP rate if the hotel bills you directly in ARS rather than some central billing outside Argentina which might apply on the non-ref rate. I would imagine that the rates you cite already don’t include the VAT. I would note that currently the gap between the central bank rate and MEP is quite narrow but it’s very difficult to predict what it might be in five months time. Ideally you want a price in pesos.

    Thanks, presumably if I’m paying on departure as option B outlines, I can ask to pay in ARS? Then use my credit card to pay that which will do the conversion into GBP?

    Has anyone recently stayed at the Melia Grand Iguazu for a data point?

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