La Casa Rosada (Spanish for "the Pink House"), officially known as the Casa de Gobierno ("Government House") or Palacio Presidencial ("The Presidential Palace"), is the official seat of the executive branch of the government of Argentina. (When not working at the Casa Rosada, the president resides in a compound in Olivos, Buenos Aires.)
The Casa Rosada was built at the eastern end of the Plaza de Mayo, a large square which since the founding of the city of Buenos Aires has contained the top political institutions of Argentina. The current building, however, dates back only to 1873 and was constructed over the foundations of an earlier customs house, post office, and fortress. Its balcony, which faces the square, has served as a podium for many figures, including Eva Perón, who rallied the descamisados from there, and Pope John Paul II, who visited Buenos Aires in 1998. Madonna sang her filmed rendition of the song "Don’t Cry for Me, Argentina," for the movie Evita, from the balcony after a meeting with the then President Carlos Menem.
The building is painted a light pink colour (and a darker pink colour on the side facing the plaza, after a recent repainting). It is currently undergoing extensive renovation, including repainting. Dubbed "Casa Rosada" by President Domingo Faustino Sarmiento, it is said that he chose this colour scheme in order to defuse political tensions by mixing the red and white colours of the country’s opposing political parties. An alternative explanation suggests that the original paint contained cow’s blood to prevent damage from the effects of humidity. (Wikipedia)
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