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Sunday, December 4, 2011

San Ceferino

Jon's department does a great job of bringing the employee's families together for an end of the year "Family Day" that takes place at an estancia about 45 minutes from the city.  This weekend, we packed up and went out to San Ceferino to enjoy a day of meeting other families, swimming, eating and enjoying the fresh air.

Remarkably, this is the third year that we have participated in Family Day, I still cannot believe that we have lived in Buenos Aires for that long.  The weather makes a huge difference in the success of this event, and we had the most perfect day possible for this year's festivities.  To add the the excitement of the day, we drove there in our own car, which we just purchased last week, so it was a trip that combined the freedom of owning a vehicle with the anxiety of driving in this slightly-chaotic city - and I'm happy to report that Jon was a natural.  I'll have to try my hand behind the wheel another day.

Like most estancias, San Ceferino is a multi-functional facility that can be used for corporate events, weddings, social events or people looking for a little respite from the city.  They have 75 rooms , 2 pools, 2 kiddie pools, tennis courts, soccer fields, horses, bikes and carriage rides.  It is an easy drive, only 30 miles outside of the city and even better, just  two turns off of the highway.  There a few banquet rooms, we have attended when there was a served meal, and this year there was a buffet, both rooms were ample for the event.

When we first arrived, there was a large canopy to keep us from the sun.  They passed drinks and picada plates while we mingled, and they staff was attentive and friendly.  There was a huge turnout, it was great to see everyone from the previous year, and meet lots of new folks too.  What was most impressive was the number of new family members that had joined in the last year, Gretchen included, and she really enjoyed playing with the other babies.

I'm not sure how much of the event was organized by the estancia, or if there was an outside company that took care of the flow of events, but they did a fantastic job of providing entertainment for the "older" kids, having an earlier lunch time with kid friendly food, bouncy houses and other playthings with staff to watch the kids, all so that the parents could enjoy a meal together in relative quiet.

Look at all the open, green spaces!  If that wasn't enough, there is also a lake which makes for a picture perfect scene when you're riding a horse or taking a carriage ride.

Gretchen was extremely well behaved, and we were able to eat lunch with the adults in relative peace.  After lunch it was time to go for a quick swim, but as you can tell from this picture, she was getting sleepy well before we made it to the pool.
Daddy and his sleepy baby girl
After pool time, Gretchen was pretty amped up and needed some extra loving to get to sleep.  Jon's boss's wife, Silvina, was a complete baby whisperer and helped Gretchen to sleep while we were able to spend a few minutes of adult time chatting with other people around the pool.  This was a lifesaver!  Thanks Silvina!

If you're looking for an estancia, there are a thousand to choose from, but San Ceferino has my endorsement.  We would certainly consider it for a nice weekend away, and we hope that they will continue to hold the yearly Family Day event at this location.

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