El Ateneo Grand Splendid, Buenos Aires

4.8
#2 of 663 in Shopping in Argentina
Must see · Architectural Building · Gift & Specialty Shop
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Browse an extensive collection of books in a spectacular setting at El Ateneo Grand Splendid, a bookstore housed in an early 20th-century theater. The theater first opened in 1919, and was later converted into a cinema. Today bookshelves replace seats in the stalls and galleries. Ascend to the top floor for a bird's-eye views of the floor below. Look up to admire the intricate ceiling frescoes. The theater boxes remain, converted into reading nooks where you can peruse a book before you buy. On the stage and backstage area, enjoy a coffee or empanadas at the onsite cafe. Although the store primarily stocks Spanish-language books, they also carry a wide range of English-language titles. Use our Buenos Aires visit app to add El Ateneo Grand Splendid and other attractions to your Buenos Aires vacation plans.
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El Ateneo Grand Splendid reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
23,017 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • El Ateneo is a beautiful place to read books and enjoy the magic of being inside a theater! My daughter loved it! 
    El Ateneo is a beautiful place to read books and enjoy the magic of being inside a theater! My daughter loved it!  more »
  • It was definitely worth a visit to see the interior of the bookstore which once a theatre. There was a small café in the location of where the stage was. I didn’t buy any books but I did buy some... 
    It was definitely worth a visit to see the interior of the bookstore which once a theatre. There was a small café in the location of where the stage was. I didn’t buy any books but I did buy some...  more »
Google
  • It's a great tourist attraction, most beautiful library you will probably visit. The experience is incredible, and if you love books you can spend hours walking around them in a really nice atmosphere (there's even a small section of english books). The people there were really helpful, both in the library spaces and in the cafeteria. This is definitely a must visit place in Buenos Aires! You can spend a few minutes just to take some pictures if you're not so much into the book shopping, or you can spend one or more hours just looking at books or taking a coffee in what used to be the theater stage. On the downside, the book selection can definitely be improved specially in specific areas, so if you are looking for technical books, or a more specialized library there are better places.
  • A good place to go for a visit. Overall it is impressive that they could adapt a library within a theatre/ opera structure. However, I wouldn't go there if you were short in time or if you're not much of a library fan It may be a little far from other points of interest and you'd probably spend little time if you're only looking for sightseeing spots in Buenos Aires.

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