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Buenos Aires festivities - Christmas Eve and New Year Eve Tango Shows

(Photograph credit: Gobierno de Buenos Aires)

Like other southern hemisphere countries, Christmas falls during summertime which means the pretty twinkling Christmas lights are not seen until after 9.30pm because the days are at their longest. There´s no snow or sleighbells to be heard and Santa usually is indicated by his hat rather than a full red suit complete with swishy giant belly. It is rather pleasant not to be bombarded by Christmas carols for the month leading up to the occasion, although some English-speaking residents have been known to wake up and play Snoopy´s Christmas via Youtube just to bring a little bit of ´home´ to the Christmas celebrations.  

Being summertime in this large concrete jungle, it is inevitably going to be hot and it has become somewhat a regular occurrence that the city can hit temperatures of 40 degrees on either Christmas Eve or New Years Eve night, making the chef’s job of attending the parilla (grill) a rather sweaty ordeal.  However, you are forgiven if you think that the city has gone crazy when the clock chimes 12am Christmas or New Year’s Day. Forget Auld Lang Syne. No matter how high the temperature is, Christmas Day and New Year´s Day are traditionally welcomed in with infectious revelry and an exorbitantly large amount of personal fireworks being let off in the streets. To the uninitiated, this can be somewhat disconcerting but rest assured that despite the racket, the streets are warm with the spirit of community rather than hostility.

This time of year is all about family.  Trees are put up on Fiesta de la Virgen (Day of the Immaculate Conception) which is December 8th. Nochebuena (Christmas Eve) is full of big family get togethers to eat, be merry and toast with champagne at the stroke of midnight. No waiting around until morning to get your gifts - porteño children are nocturnal and are usually distracted by their families while ´Santa´ places the gifts under the tree at midnight.  These gatherings are followed by long leisurely asados (BBQs) on the following Christmas Day afternoon. New Year is also traditionally a family event and is welcomed in with another round of street fireworks and plenty of good community spirit.

If you’re celebrating in the city of Buenos Aires, why not make Christmas unique and spice it up with an evening out at a tango show.  While all tango shows are open for New Years Eve celebrations, only La Ventana, Gala Tango, El Viejo Almacen and Piazzolla Tango are offering special shows on Christmas Eve.  Each has an unforgettable evening planned that usually includes welcome cocktails, a gala dinner, elaborate tango show and after the midnight toast, a party with a DJ and regular shuttles back to hotels.

Transport over the festive season is very limited (take note: between 9pm and 3am on the celebration days, there are almost no buses or taxis) and most restaurants require advanced bookings.  This can make a tango show all the more appealing as all the hard work is done for you and you don't have to worry about being stranded without a taxi. Besides, this is Buenos Aires whose heart and soul is about tango. What better way to bring in the New Year?

All the tango shows are offering specially planned events to welcome in the New Year and offer an excellent way to give you a unique start to 2015. Transfers, cocktails, dinner, tango show - all followed by parties until the wee small hours of the morning. Madero Tango is even offering the additional surprise of watching fireworks go off over the docks of Puerto Madero. Whether it’s traditional (Esquina Carlos Gardel, Cafe de Los Angelitos), romantic (Gala Tango, La Ventana), extravagant (Madero Tango, Señor Tango, Rojo Tango) or bohemian (El Viejo Almacen, El Querandi), you´re sure to find a New Year´s Eve tango show that suits your style.

Merry Christmas and may you tango yourself into a wonderful New Year.


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