Patagonia, Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Original Ice Bar

The ice bar offers new sensations experienced when having traditional drinks within a space where all the elements have been carved in ice.

Ice Bar Iloche is the first ice bar in South America. It is located in Bariloche and represents a new concept as far as recreation spaces are concerned. What are its merits? We resolved to find out. That is why we went there with a group of friends.

As we stood in front of the door, the cold blue hues led us to the main room as a kind of adaptation. A large hall with average pleasant temperature and clean walls featured ample armchairs. It was there that we waited for our friends, who were already late.

We approached the bar, where a river of hot chocolate warmed up our bodies, considering that the temperature outside was quite low. Other people were just having a drink or a beer while good music and a giant map type projection screen displayed an imitation of light-blue ice crystals on a big surface.

  • The first ice bar in South America

    The first ice bar in South America

  • The cold blue hues

    The cold blue hues

  • A curious glass made of ice

    A curious glass made of ice

  • Feel the ice bar

    Feel the ice bar

  • Ice carved by an artist

    Ice carved by an artist

  • We were handed the drink we ordered

    We were handed the drink we ordered

  • 5 degrees below zero

    5 degrees below zero

Once we were altogether, it was time to enter that great cold chamber we were wishing to see. We put on some comfortable thermal cloaks to feel protected. A heavy door was closed behind us and we started to “feel the ice bar”. Our first impression was that we were venturing ourselves into the crevasse of a glacier where the light-blue shades prevailed and, though very low, the temperature did not bother us.

We took our time to observe every detail in the ice bar, with its four walls covered with carved iced water. We appreciated the two bars where cold drinks are served, the small tables and low armchairs where customers sit comfortably for some minutes.

The below zero decoration includes an igloo where visitors can play at being Eskimos for a while, a fireplace with its corresponding firewood, a mammoth and a Mongol soldier made of ice contribute to the cold theme.

The work was done by a local plastic artist: José Luis Mezquida, well-known for his woodworks. The delicacy of the carved ice ensures we can touch it and not find any rough edges.

In front of the main bar, we were handed the drink we ordered in a curious glass made of ice. The speaker and led light technology that endure low temperatures guarantees excellent music and the same projections we had heard before but this time inside the cold room, where a soft fog seemed to surround us.

The small air bubbles trapped inside the ice reflected the projected lights producing an appropriate effect to confirm the sensation of being inside a glacier. We had a look at the non-slid floor and the good ventilation system.

We had a chat with César Parodi, alma mater of this ambitious project that is already known in Madrid, Barcelona, London and Orlando. He told us that Bariloche’s ice bar has a larger surface than its predecessors.

Feeling enthusiast about everything he had done, he expressed: “We experienced here and there. At first, we believed that people would only be able to stay in the cold area for a few minutes. Reality proved that enthusiasts of this place regulate the time they wish to stay inside and that it is not necessary to become adapted to go in or out of this area”.

As we left, we closed the huge access door to the freezer and observed that the temperature inside was 5 degrees below zero. Once outside, we were amazed to notice that the night of Bariloche was even colder than inside the ice bar.
Read complete Outing... Mónica Pons / Eduardo Epifanio

See more points of interest in San Carlos de Bariloche

Useful Data

Timetables: from 9pm to 2am

Recommendations: An access fee is charged which includes a drink. Residents have a special discount. Open year round. Prior reservation advised for large groups.

Contact: Ice Bariloche
España 476 (Hotel Panamericano) (8400) San Carlos de Bariloche, Río Negro, Argentina Tel: +54 294-437681

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