House Of Tin Baron Simon Patino

Cochabamba Travel Blog

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Natural History Museum
This visit merits its own entry.  It was a gorgeous day, yet again, in Cochabamba and I finally got around to visiting one of the highlights of Cochabamba, the house of the tin baron Simon Patino.  He basically cornered the market in tin, not only owning most of the mines in Bolivia, which at that time was the largest known lode in the world, but he managed to get control of all the processing and refining too, making him, at the turn of the century, one of the wealthiest men in the world.  The Italianate house he built in Cochabamba was never completed before he died.  He had a great devotion to his wife and it was dedicated to her.  You can´t call it a sprawling mansion, because it´s not so huge, but it´s not just a house either.
Huge Beetles
  It´s really a gorgeous gem of a residence.  Every inch shows detail and wealth.  The cut of the imported marbles, the intricate parquetry, the amazing wall paintings and frescoes in neo-Renaissance style, the elaborate mythological and zodiacal scenes.  There was a small billiard room done entirely in the style of the Alhambra in Granada.  The detail was astonishing.  Again, it was unfortunate that I couldn´t take pictures.  This house could have been featured in a glossy opulent coffee table book.  I really want to go again and see it all over again.  The grounds and gardens similarly matched the house.  I loved the outdoor miniature theater, the lush watery Japanese gardens, the Moorish style swimming pool and casita, and the stately trees and flower beds.  The deep, dank, earthy smells suddenly overwhelmed me and for a short time I found myself as a child, in my grandfather´s back yard in Bay Village, Ohio, in the heart of summer and I closed my eyes and relished the sensations, even as it brought some tears to my eyes for nostalgia for my home city and family and times once past that can never be again.  I finally snapped out of the reverie and wandered some more through the grounds, not wanting to leave this oasis.  But finally I made my way to the gates and stepped outside back to the real world and Bolivia.
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Natural History Museum
Natural History Museum
Huge Beetles
Huge Beetles
Even Larger Tarantula
Even Larger Tarantula
Origami Bugs
Origami Bugs
Beautiful Butterflies
Beautiful Butterflies
Entrance To The Gardens
Entrance To The Gardens
House of Simon Patino
House of Simon Patino
Tour Guide
Tour Guide
Theater
Theater
Exhibition - Modern Man
Exhibition - Modern Man
Exhibition - War
Exhibition - War
Three Graces Fountain
Three Graces Fountain
Outside The House
Outside The House
The Theater
The Theater
Detail
Detail
Terrace
Terrace
Flowers in the late afternoon sun
Flowers in the late afternoon sun
Cultural Center
Cultural Center
Moorish Film Library
Moorish Film Library
View to the main entrance
View to the main entrance
Entrance to the house and gardens
Entrance to the house and gardens
Statue in Japanese Gardens
Statue in Japanese Gardens
Lush pool
Lush pool
Gardens
Gardens
Faithful St. Bernard
Faithful St. Bernard
Main entrance
Main entrance
Cochabamba
photo by: jendara