The Palacio de la Legislatura de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires (English: Palace of the Buenos Aires City Legislature) houses the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, Argentina. It is an architectural landmark in the city's Montserrat district, situated in a triangular block bounded by the streets Calle Hipólito Yrigoyen, Avenida Presidente Julio Argentino Roca and Calle Perú. Built of grey granite, it has a Neoclassical design. The building is open to the public on week-days only. The building contains the Esteban Echeverría Library, Salon Rosado (also known as the Salon Eva Perón), and a carillon which, when it was installed in 1930, was the largest in South America.
Previously known as the Centennial Library, the Esteban Echeverría library was designed in 1884 by the then Council president, Dr. Roberto Larroque, who ordered library materials from foreign counties. It also houses a collection of 30,000 texts on law and legislation. There are texts from Visigothic Spain, from the Viceroyalty of the Río de La Plata, and the colonial Buenos Aires Cabildo, and others. It includes the José Hernández Periodicals Library whose works have been microfilmed. Initially created to assist legislators and municipal officials, it was later opened to the general public. The library was renamed to honor the Argentine poet Esteban Echeverria who introduced literary romanticism to the city. The library is designed in an eclectic style with Neoclassical elements. It is clad in walnut; above the wrought iron fireplace is the city shield.
The Golden Hall, reserved for ceremonies and other formal events, was inspired by the Hall of Mirrors in the Palace of Versailles, France. It is reached by climbing the Stairway of Honor. Columns with Ionic capitals surround the central area, supporting an arched gallery which serves as a balcony over the central area. At its base there is a shield of honor with the arms of the city. The hall is lit by six chandeliers, each with 45 lights, as well as 14 candelabras. The room is used for public hearings, receptions and events.
After women obtained voting rights in 1947 and female politicians began to enter the government's legislative system, First Lady Eva Perón established the palace's Salon Rosado ("pink room"; now known as the Salon Eva Perón) as a reserved area for government women to discuss issues in a place from which men were excluded. The room is now open to visitors. It is decorated with a memorial bust of Eva Perón and includes original fixtures. The edifice was declared a Historic Protection Area in 1977 and at the "comprehensive protection level" since 2000. The salon is a study which she used as head of the Eva Perón Foundation.
A number of scenes for Alan Parker's 1996 film, Evita, were filmed here and in the legislative chambers. It is located between the offices of the President and the Vice President of the First Legislature. It houses some of the original furniture and personal objects such as a desk, chair, lamp, folders, ink and letter rack. Its walls are paneled in wood. There are also two Louis XIV cabinets by cabinetmaker Tarris, the municipal arms engraved on the doors. Two vases stand there, one in Baccarat crystal, the other bronze.
Tower and Carillon:
The clock tower is 97 metres (318 ft) high. It houses a clock with five bells named Santa Maria, Pinta, La Niña, La Porteña and, the largest, at 1,800 kg, Argentina. The tower's four quadrants have a diameter measuring 4.5 metres (15 ft). The clock has a system that controls the running of 80 other clocks distributed in the rest of the building. The German-made carillon, made of bronze, has 30 bells that together weigh over 27 tons; most are more than 4 tons. Its architect was Hector Ayerza. It is situated on a semicircular pergola, surrounded by gargoyles and the silver pipes of a powerful air conditioner. The bells are suspended in an iron frame 11 metres (36 ft) in height and weigh 8 tons. When installed in 1930, it was the largest carillon in South America.