The estancia is steeped in family and Jesuit history.
It was in fact the Jesuits who first organised farming in the area. Estancia Los Potreros takes its name from the ‘potreros’, or enclosures that were used during the three centuries of Spanish colonization, back when the area was mule-breeding country. From here the mules were driven all the way to Bolivia to work in the silver mines.
The Begg family (Scottish in origin) first came to the area in the early part of the 20th century. Robin Begg (Kevin’s grandfather) built his own beautiful home on the top of a hill on the north of the farm, but shortly after the house was completed, he died. Robin was survived by his widow, Louie Begg who started accommodating paying guests in the 40s.
The guest book, started in 1945 is worth a read. It contains lyrical descriptions of the estancia – “heaven among the hill tops” is still one of our favourites. Louie lived to see three centuries, passing away at the impressive age of 104.
Today the farm is the home of Robert Begg, (Louie's son), his children Robin, Merina and Kevin, and their families. The farm now breeds Aberdeen Angus and horses instead of mules, but rural values and traditions are maintained, and we're every bit as in love with the place as our ancestors were.
The area has had many famous visitors over the years. As a child, Che Guevara lived nearby with his family, while Albert Einstein once visited a hotel managed by a German family in the nearby town of La Falda. Arguably the most famous guest of all was Jackie Kennedy, who regularly visited a neighbouring estancia. Here, hidden from the public eye, she engaged in her true passion away from politics - horseback riding.