Here's why you should come and stay on the Estancia La Margarita ....

Friday, March 20, 2015

Liza Nagode– horseperson exceptional

Liza in harmony with the gauchos 
Some time ago when Louisa was still with us I mentioned that it would be great if we could find an excellent horseperson from overseas to work full time on the estancia with gauchos.

The idea was to put that person in charge of the riding and horses. We have always had gauchos on the estancia and still do and still will. No doubt they can be exceptional horse people. But the very nature of the gaucho is to be a bit of a gypsy. They tend to move around and so sometimes it can be difficult to get consistency. Also they don’t speak English and many of the guests who come to us don’t speak Spanish so it can be a bit of a problem with communication.

Liza in her own country Slovinia with one of her own  horses
So we decided to place an advert for an expert horse person who was a foreigner and who could speak Spanish. We had many replies from some very well qualified applicants. We filtered them down until we came to two candidates. They were both excellent but Louisa (bless her) had a certain feeling for Liza from Slovenia. I argued that she, in my opinion, was to young at 23, that the gauchos with their macho ways would run all over her. However, Louisa insisted and won the argument and I am so happy she did.
Liza in competion

Liza had 13 years riding experience, owned her own horses, and had participated in numerous competitions in Slovenia, Austria, Italy and Guatemala in which she had done exceptionally well. She had moved on to study International affairs and Spanish in the USA. In the USA she also learned polo – Liza was our chosen one

Liza arrived at the estancia a couple   of months ago to take charge of the horses and riding. Her job was to look after the guests make sure they got the rides they wanted and the horses that suited them. She would be the guide and get help from the gauchos. I stepped back and waited for problems. They didn’t come. Liza got to it straight away and I can honestly say that she has (if it was possible) improved the riding on the estancia. With her energy, her dedication and her big winning smile for guests she has proved to be a winner in every sense for our guests and gauchos alike. She is with us til the end of August when she leaves to further her studies. She will be an exceptionally hard act to follow for sure and this a big blog thank you to Liza for coming to work for us .

If you come to the estancia I am sure you will agree that Liza as they say in Spanish is lo mas (the best)

This is David Cummings alias The English Gaucho hasta pronto

Friday, February 27, 2015

Here Comes the Cavalry – Welcome

Sadly Louisa Bowran our estancia manger had to leave us  (nothing last forever as they say) and  to take her exquisite smile to far of places to help save   other souls, break hearts and no doubt do a fine job for who ever needs her impressive management and horse skills. She did a great job for me here and I was sad to lose her but she did help me to choose her replacement and did a great job in doing so. So wherever the wind has blown you Louisa te lo agradezco.

David and his wife Cris (the chosen ones) who were living in El Salvador arrived to run the estancia over a month ago and from what I can see they look as though they have been running an estancia all their lives. They drove all the way from El Salvador with their truck and two little dogs to take up the challenge of running La Margarita. It was a drive of a month. They left on the 25th of Dec and arrived here on the estancia on the 21st Jan to take up the manager’s post. David is a professional chef and Cris is an administrator extraordinaire having worked for some top companies doing just that and making a super job of it. As a team they are amazing. It shows that they have worked together on other projects for years. They compliment each other and have fallen into the rhythm of running the estancia easily. David is of course in charge of the kitchen and with his cooking’s skills and his experience is making our menu even better. Together they are the perfect hosts their ability to make guest feel at ease during their say with us is impressive and their ability to solve problems is amazing. To say I am impressed is an understatement and if you decide to come to La Margarita I am sure that you will be as equally impressed as I am.
This is a big welcome ( a little bit late sorry ) to Cris and David thank you for coming and making it all look easy.    

This is David Cummings alias The English Gaucho hasta pronto  

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Finding Yourself on La Margarita!

There are many many reasons why guests come to La Margarita I have found out over the year’s that I have owned and run it. Some come to ride the horses to gallop across the pampas as fast as they can, some come to enjoy the wide open spaces in the middle of nowhere, some come to see what life’s like in the gaucho pampas to see the gauchos in an  almost throw back in time setting.

Others come because they are just a bit tried of travelling and they want a peaceful place to call home for a few days so they don’t have to keep packing up their suit cases. And then some come to find themselves again. That’s what the celebrated Argentine musician Bernardo Rubaja did last week. He came alone and to us it was obvious he wanted to have some space. We gave it to him and after a few days he had a smile on his face. He stated to chat with us and joke about his life and where he was. In his hey day (he was a top musician in Jazz and New Age Music) he played with the best. He has had a great life living in California and playing music with the “A” team having a ball but time moves on as we all know. Gradually he made his way back to Argentina where he now lives.

One day I sat down with him on the white bench outside the main house. We chatted for ages about music, about kids, life, getting old and how it all goes so fast that sometimes we forget who we are. Bernardo said he loved the estancia; the freedom to think it gave him the peace to hear his thoughts and the energy to renew his spirit.  We spoke both in Spanish and in English and he said its great because he had forgotten that he spoke English. He also said that he had forgotten he was a musician in a funny way and that the estancia was bringing it back to him. He talked about the estancia and how we run like an orchestra. How he could hear the music in the organising of the estancia, the chords of the wind and notes of the animals. To me it was fascinating to hear this top musician talk in this way. 

Bernardo loved it here so much he decided to stay a further four days. When he left he said he would be back when he needed to renew again and I very much look forward to meeting him again. He then presented me with one of his latest recording (it was great) and off he went this top gent.

This is David Cummings alias The English Gaucho hasta pronto

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

La Margarita - A kids paradise and of course for their parents as well!

Over the many years I have run La Margarita it never fails to amaze me in these days of Internet, Facebook, video games and Instagram how kids can immediately forget about these things when they get to the estancia. In the case of Ollie and Cameron the two children of the Walker family it was the same refreshing story.

Ben, their dad, sent me an email about a possible stay on the estancia in Nov 2014. I remember communicating with him about the children and I mentioned that there is no doubt that once kids got here they wouldn’t 

want to leave. Ben made the booking and a week or so later the Walker family arrived. The children immediately went about exploring the estancia with the staff. They looked for eggs from the chickens, said hello to the horses, played with the dogs and generally had a wonderful time messing around on the estancia while Ben and Adele had time to unwind and relax. The kids rode horses every day and mixed in with the staff helping them with some of their tasks. Both Cameron and Ollie were a delight to meet and so were their parents. The Walkers had decided to up and travel the world for a year with the whole family. What an adventure they are having. I can only say I felt envious of the adventures they had in front of them.

If you are thinking of upping the family and going on a world walkabout for a year but are hesitant have a look at the Walkers blog. No doubt you will be getting the atlas out and planning your own trip very soon

When the time to leave came as predicated the children didn’t want to leave and protested with tears on theirs faces that they wanted to stay. But of course leave they did and there is no doubt that although they have wonderful memories of the estancia they will also have some fantastic memories of the places they have visited
since  they were with us- what an adventure bravo for Ben and Adele in giving this wonderful gift to their children

Here is the link to the Walkers blog about their adventure and their write up of their visit to La Margarita: 

If you read this Ben and family thanks for coming to La Margarita and making us a part of your wonderful adventure. Have a wonderful time in New Zealand and try to say hello to my son who lives there!
This is David Cummings alias the English Gaucho hasta pronto

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

What a Fun Day We had at The Gaucho School

Last week we held another Gaucho School Event and what a time we had. Ceci a true female gaucho and a very good friend of mine came along to help supervise proceedings and what a job she did rounding up the cows with our students. We also had Luis a handsome and dashing gaucho if ever there was one who showed us all how to lasso in true gaucho style. He then proceeded to wrestle the calves to the ground and showed us how to round up calves and pen them. Our students were a mix of English, Argentinean and Australian and they all had a smile on their faces through out the day. Probably y the highlight of the day was when the calves

had to be rounded up. It always looks easy but it was soon apparent that it’s not as easy as it looks as the students had a go at it. Time and time again the calves slipped through posse and the round up had to start again. The barrel racing was fun as student raced against gaucho and Adriana a student from England nearly had a gaucho in tears when he nearly got beat by her! Still he won luckily and saved his pride for another day

We also at the same time had Fabien Couturier on the estancia.  Fabien is a   travel writer for best selling Canadian national newspaper La Presse. She had come all the way from Canada to write an article about La Margarita (our fame has spread far and wide) She had wanted to do an article on an authentic pampas estancia and choose La Margarita. She said on leaving that the gaucho school was one of the most exhilarating horse event she had seen and that our horses were just amazing. Truth is the Argentine criollo horse is a breed apart- they are wonderfully tough but responsive animals so it was no surprise that she loved them. Her article is due out in a coupe of weeks and I am for one looking forward to it.
We are planning another Gaucho School Event on the 8th Feb 2015 so if you are interested to know more just send me an email at and I will be happy to send you details. It promises to be just as much fun as last time and my very good friends and filmmakers to boot  Gaynor and Brian are coming all the way over from England to film it – can’t wait

This is David Cummings alias The English Gaucho hasta pronto