One of the more glamorous events of the Park Hyatt Masters of Food & Wine festival that I attended last month in Mendoza was a decadent brunch at La Alboroza, the luxurious home of artist Sergio Roggerone.
Sergio Roggerone greeted our group as we entered the front gate of his hacienda. Definitely not a struggling artist, judging by his pad – which he built himself (he’s also an architect).
I love art, so I took some time to look at Roggerone’s paintings, which he had displayed in a gallery in the front building (our brochure had described him as a “plastics artist,” but I only saw regular paintings and collages in his gallery). Many of his pieces take Catholic-esque icons and give them a folk art twist that’s still modern. I found them dreamy and delightful. I didn’t see the price sheet, but one writer in our group said that the paintings started at $10,000. Nope, not starving.
Decked out with lounge chairs, a pool and palm trees, the interior courtyard of La Alboroza proved a perfect place for an upscale lawn party. Even the South Americans seemed to enjoy it, although I had the feeling that they didn’t see the early side of noon too often.
I loved the folk art pieces that the Roggerones placed around the property. This carved altar was located inside a foyer.
The Roggerones do have two rooms in La Alboroza that they rent to visitors, for about $500 a night. We weren’t able to see them, but they were located in this hallway opposite the billowing curtains. Our translator told us that the Roggerones are thinking of turning the entire property into a boutique hotel at a future date. (I tried to find a review of the property on TripAdvisor that I could link to, but no one seems to have left any yet).
It’s too bad that we weren’t allowed inside the Roggerone home, as it appears that Sergio and his wife have amassed quite a collection of folk art. Sergio Roggerone’s studio did have a glass wall so we could peer in.
It being an official Masters of Food & Wine event, there was plenty of treats served at La Alboroza. I couldn’t get enough of this almond cake from Providence pastry chef, Andrew Shotts of Garrison Confections – and I don’t normally like almond cake. If I lived in Providence again (I was there from 1998-99), I know I’d be stopping by his bakery.
I got the impression that Sergio Roggerone does quite a few events at La Alboroza. I loved seeing the property and being introduced to Argentinean art. It’s something that I hope to learn more about, should I return to the country soon.