Jules Charles Thays (1849-1934), better known as Cárlos, born in Paris on August 20, 1849, was the creator of many Estancia landscapes in Argentina.
Architect, naturalist, landscaper, urbanist, writer and journalist, was nationalized Argentine. Also he was disciple and secretary of the famous architect Edouard Francois André (the great nineteenth century French landscaper)
He arrived from Paris in 1889, and adopted Argentina as his country: He went in a tour across all over Argentina looking for native species in order to decorate walks, parks and squares. He brought from the north and acclimatized tipas, jacarandas, lapachos, ceibos and “palos borrachos”, devoted to his promise not to leave any Buenos Aires street without trees or without flowers.
In the following years he produced hundreds of projects: the Centenario square, Lezama park, Patricios and February 3 parks; Bosques de Palermo (which expanded and remodeled) and Barrancas de Belgrano; the Constitution square, Congress and May Square; including 69 squares and public walks attributed in Buenos Aires, and 16 in the interior of Argentina.
“Thays always incorporated water, either in the form of lake, creek, pond or fountain. After adding sculptures, pergolas, and open spaces to see the nearby fields…”
“Around the main house of the estancia landscapes, the garden was French, rigid and geometric style, while the rest of the park get into the nature of the environment being more free and with wild design.”
In pampa Estancias like La Candelaria, Lobos (with a French chateau style), Thays landscaped 100 hectares and introduced 240 species such as pine, palm trees, ombúes, or casuarinas pines.
In La Porteña Estancia, in San Antonio de Areco district, that used to belonge to Manuel Güiraldes (and where his son Richard wrote the Don Segundo Sombra gaucho book), Thays planted eucalyptus trees, cedars of Lebanon, oaks and an avenue of access with a tree native to the Mediterranean, the hackberry (Celtis Australis). Also in Areco: the gardens of the traditional gaucho Estancia “El Flamenco” that belong to Jorge Castex.
He himself designed and directed his estancia landscapes and park projects personally and worked tirelessly around twenty hours a day. He was the author of the first Argentine book on landscaping.
He founded the Buenos Aires Botanical Garden to develop and adapt plant species for scientific, recreational and landscape projects. Opened on September 7, 1898, it became internationally renowned scientific center.
He designed with ingenuity, creativity and love for native species.
Extracted from Teresa Bausili, published in “La Nacion”: Thays, el apellido detrás de los grandes parques y estancias
You can enjoy our countryside and Estancias in this Full Day Tour to the Estancias and gaucho town