Whatever way your head turns in Mendoza, Argentina, sits a postcard-worthy view: snow-capped Andes, bright blue skies, and countless, rolling vineyards. Known as the “Land of Sun and Wine,” it’s not hard to imagine why everyone from enotourists to honeymooners to adventure seekers have added the region to their travel lists. But does anything say business like an Argentinian steak paired with a bold, ruby red Malbec? Here are five reasons why Mendoza makes a marvelous meeting mecca.
Obviously, the world-class wines are the biggest draw to Mendoza, as the region produces over 70% of the country’s wine. But beyond the wines themselves, the countless vineyards have tremendous services to offer such as Bodega Tapiz, where you can book a wine paired lunch on the patio overlooking the vines, take a carriage ride around the vast property, tour the winery and learn about the wine-making process, or book a more formal event at the Club Tapiz restaurant. Most of the wineries have top tier restaurants perfect for business dinners or meetings.
With the Andes always looming in view, many people come to Mendoza to hike, ski, or take scenic drives down the iconic international road that crosses over to Chile. Just a couple hours away from the city center, what more perfect work break than soaking in a natural thermal spa at Termas Cacheuta, jaunting through the scenic Aconcagua park, or even hiking both the western and southern hemispheres’ tallest peak?
A Charming City
While it’s easy to spend your time traipsing from vineyard to vineyard, the city of Mendoza has a laid-back spirit that comes alive at night. Stroll the wide pedestrian main road and five main city plazas, alongside which Mendocinos can be seen sipping coffee at any time of day. Or blow off some post-meeting steam at one of the many bars along Arístides Avenue, which feature outside tables and a bustling young crowd. Many wine shops, such as Wine O’Clock, offer exquisitely reasonable wine tastings in cozy courtyards, if that’s more your style.
From boutique inns on vineyards to luxury hotels, Mendoza has a bit of everything to offer for where to stay and where to host your event. The Intercontinental Mendoza, aside from being a short distance to downtown (only about a $2 cab ride away), features a stunning, art-speckled lobby as well as 11 spacious meeting rooms plus two lounge rooms with a maximum capacity of 1,100 people for larger events.
In Argentina, it’s all about the steak. In addition to holding its rank as a top wine destination, Mendoza also features a renowned gastronomic scene. Wow your business partners with a stop at world famous chef Francis Mallman’s 1884 for a ribeye cooked over a wood fire. Getting its name from the old winery it’s built into, the romantic restaurant adorned with checkerboard floors and throne-like seats uses classic, simple Argentine techniques to make phenomenal food. Or try Bodega Los Toneles, another winery just minutes from the city which features a stylish modern-rustic decor and creative seasonal fare.
Wow-Worthy Wine for Every Work Occasion
With literally hundreds of wineries in the Mendoza region, it can be overwhelming to choose a bottle from the sea of options. The two main regional varieties are the famous Malbec and the lesser known but delicious white variety called Torrontes. Match your occasion with a top selection: Dinner with the Boss: Bodega Tapiz Black Tears Malbec For a bottle that you can bank on to impress a superior, Bodega Tapiz’s Black Tears Malbec is a brilliant deep red and offers a unique balance of prominent tannins and a long, elegant finish. Toasting Success: Zuccardi 2014 Serie A Torrontes Forget the bubbly and opt for a fresh, fragrant Torrontes instead! Sweet on the nose, with a scent of pears and florals, this white is surprisingly smooth and dry on the finish. Happy Hour Libation: Pala Corazon Malbec 2013 Relax and let-off steam with your friends while trying a unique, small, family-owned winery’s mighty Malbec. For such a low cost (often under $20), this Malbec is high in minerality, giving it a unique earthy and vibrant flavor. Making the Deal: Bodega Catena Zapata 2006 Nicasia Vineyard Malbec Go bold and dependable with this elegant and rich Malbec. The sweet, fruity scents combined with the dark purple color will have anyone saying yes.