With its square meter at over 8,000 american dollars, the fourteenth floor of the Kavanagh building, in front of the San Martín square, in Retiro, is the most expensive apartment of Buenos Aires.
The Kavanagh, inaugurated in 1936, was built by the studio of the architects Sánchez, Lagos and de la Torre. By the time, due to its 120 metres, it was the highest building of the city but also the biggest one made of reinforced concrete in the world. Apart from beating records for its dimensions and techniques of construction, the Kavanagh had luxurious details which were not found in other buildings of the city, such as the central air conditioning and a cold-storage chamber where the tenants stored their fur coats that they wore in winter or when travelling to Europe.
The building of the tower was ordered by an Argentine rich woman of Irish descent: Corina Kavanagh. She sold two of her estancias to finance the construction. Its intention, as sceptics say, was neatly commercial. However, there is a legend of this construction related to love reasons. This story tells that a son of Corina went out with one daughter of the aristocratic Anchorena family. Her mother, Mercedes Castellano de Anchorena, forbade this relationship because she considered him only a heir of a new rich. Corina Kavanagh decided to take revenge.
Mercedes de Anchorena lived in the Palace which at first was called with its surname and nowadays it is known as Palacio San Martín. The Palace is found next to the square with the same name. In the neighbourhood, Mercedes ordered to build the basilica of the Santísimo Sacramento, one of the most luxurious churches of Buenos Aires, because if she lived in a palace, “my god does not deserve less”, supposedly she said. Thus, from the gardens of the house, the Anchorena enjoyed the sight of their familiar. But then, Corina decided to build the tallest building in town just in front of the church.
The legend is not confirmed but it is known that the tower was a great business for Corina, who kept the largest apartment, located on the fourteenth floor. The same one was put on sale for 5,9 million US dollars in December of 2008. The apartment of 726 square metres has five bedrooms, three terraces and a 360 degrees view.
Its current owner, the second one after Corina Kavanagh, is Alain Levenfiche, a British lord. According to his websites, he loves yachts, motorbikes and beautiful women; he also explains that he did not study at the university “because life is too short to waste time”.
On this video (en inglés), the lord himself shows us the apartment, whose refurbishments lasted two years. This apartment is sold with the complete furniture and decoration. Levenfiche added to this flat a mini-disco, a bar and a mini cinema. From the 1930s is only conserved of the bathrooms, with the original handbasin, bathtub and WC of Corina Kavanagh.
Do you like the Kavanagh? In which of the city’s luxury buildings would you like to live or spend your vacations?