Chile is one of those countries that cannot be identified with a single touristic icon. Its geography is so diverse, and its culture so rich, that the images passing through the traveler’s mind are like those of a movie sequence ranging from the mysterious Moai statues of Easter Island and the imposing glaciers of Patagonia, to the arid Atacama Desert and cosmopolitan Santiago.
Chile offers you the possibility to experience this Latin American nation while enjoying compelling landscapes and the most delicious cuisine (accompanied by exquisite wines), along with the maximum comfort that the country has to offer in terms of hotel services. Indeed, Chile is an extraordinary experience for every visitor, as evidenced by the six boutique hotels highlighted below.
Explora Rapa Nui, Easter Island
Seen from the air, this resort’s whimsical architecture of circular lines and earth-tone colors seem to merge with the natural enclave of Easter Island. Once your feet touch solid ground, you will discover that same sensation at Explora Rapa Nui Hotel’s selected as the “Best in Latin America” by Travel + Leisure magazine in 2011.
The architecture of the hotel, built with sea views and surrounded by impressive moai statues, was designed to fit harmoniously in the surroundings, using unevenness, circular lines, open spaces, semi-covered, shadows and native materials such as volcanic stone and wood.
Yet, the hotel’s architecture is only one expression of the basic concept of Explora Rapa Nui: Life in Easter Island. In such an idea, the word “luxury” is not associated with ostentation, but with respect for the environment, proximity to nature, and of course a unique experience for the visitor in this remote South American destination.
A carefully designed excursion program is another source of pride for the hotel. On foot, by bicycle or by boat, you have several options for exploring the mysterious and entrancing Easter Island. The word “contemplation,” in short, is what you will experience in all of the more than 20 excursions that can take you to some corners of the island that even locals seldom reach. Always in the company of an expert guide, you will be introduced to the history and culture of Rapa Nui (Easter Island), which are palpable in the island’s landscapes and archaeological ruins.
Snorkelers benefit from some of the world’s most crystal clear waters. The rustic yet elegant guest rooms possess stunning ocean views. Gourmet cuisine is prepared with local products. The resort’s spa features a Spanish colonial style. The unforgettable landscapes of Easter Island abound. Indeed, space is short to speak of everything this boutique hotel has to offer. But better than reading about it, come and experience Explora Rapa Nui for yourself. We invite you to join the few adventurers who have visited this remote and secluded gem!
Hotel Remota, Puerto Natales
Transparency: this could be the first image that comes to the mind of whoever initially sets foot in Hotel Remota, in the city of Puerto Natales. Why hide beauty with partitions or walls? Especially if you are surrounded by the spectacular beauty of the Chilean Patagonia.
Conceived as an open space, with an intimate homey touch, Hotel Remota puts the fullness of the Patagonian landscape at your feet through large windows that substitute for walls. Another of the hotel’s advantages is its strategic location on the route to one of the most important sites in South America: Torres del Paine National Park, with its fjords, glaciers, rivers, forests and steppes.
And, as you might imagine, the hotel’s program of excursions is a second great plus of this fantastic hotel. Fly fishing, horseback riding, mountain biking, birdwatching, star-gazing and sailing are just a few of the activities that hotel guests can enjoy. Added to this is this is Hotel Remota’s excellent service and friendly staff who are available 24/7 to make your trip a memorable one.
Awasi Atacama, Atacama
In the middle of the most arid desert on Earth, the Atacama Desert, a beautiful oasis combines discreet and rustic elegance along with the comforts and the exciting possibilities for exploring one of the most striking regions in the world.
Behind a 100-year-old wall stands Awasi Atacama, constructed with river stones and adobe bricks in line with techniques and the ancient style of this region’s first settlers. The small lodge has only 10 rooms for its guests, whose occupants are provided with a private guide and the use of a 4×4 vehicle. Plus, guests enjoy their own private patio, an outdoor shower, large armchairs and alpaca blankets. But there’s also the lodge’s restaurant, whose goal is “the best of the desert, served on our guests’ plates.” This is not a simple challenge, but one whose result is a unique menu, prepared essentially with local products that you can enjoy while admiring one of the starriest skies in the world.
If this sounds like the perfect place to rest after daily excursions to geysers, canyons, valleys, petroglyphs, archaeological sites and giant cacti - it’s because it is. With your favorite drink in hand by the pool, the fireplace or in your cozy pre-Inca style circular room, you can relax while thinking of all the beauty seen throughout the day.
Le Reve Boutique, Santiago
Called “the most charming hotel in Santiago,” this is not an exaggerated slogan. From its ivy-clad facade and wooden shutters, to its sophisticated homely style that’s reminiscent of Paris’ small hotels, every inch of the Le Reve Boutique has been carefully designed down to the last detail.
Located in the historic La Providencia neighborhood, and strategically situated near the city’s civic center, the hotel breaks with the traditional molds of rigid hours or standoffish service. For example: Le Reve’s charming little kitchen is open at night for serving snacks, coffee and juices to guests. Similarly, in the “Honesty Bar,” guests can serve themselves the drinks or snacks they want, enjoying the tranquility of the lobby or the terrace. There’s even a button-stitching and sewing service with daytime and evening hours!
The hotel fulfills its promise to make its guests feel at home, even though it has four floors, 31 rooms, a souvenir shop and several other service areas. Moreover, its personalized service is in no contradiction to its excellent service. The combination of both, plus the experience of a trip to the cosmopolitan and cultured city of Santiago de Chile, will make your stay at Le Reve Boutique Hotel a unique experience.
Explora Patagonia Lodge, Patagonia
The image of a boat anchored on the shores of Lake Pehos one that’s retained by most guests who have stayed at the Explore Patagonia Lodge. Its location within the famous Torres del Paine National Park, between mountains, glaciers and lakes, makes the hotel a showcase of the exotic and immense beauty of Patagonia.
The hotel offers you the best ways to take advantage of this setting. Its 50 “exploration routes,” with differing levels of difficulty, can be taken on foot or by horseback to take you deep into this remote region of the world. And speaking of the hotel itself, it was built and designed to achieve the greatest harmony and proximity of the human being to the natural environment.
Panoramic views of the Cordillera Paine mountain range and the granite “Towers of Paine” (three spectacular summits) are the backdrop of this hotel that combines luxury with what is essential and minimalist. And the food, being exquisite, doesn’t break with that concept; the uniquely flavored dishes — accompanied by a good selection of wines — are designed to make the traveler feel agile and light for exploration excursions. A very complete spa, a 100 meter swimming pool, a souvenir shop, horse stables and the Explorers’ Bar are several other features that can be enjoyed at the hotel.
Gervasoni Hotel Boutique Patrimonial, Valparaiso
Long and meticulous restoration work turned one of Valparaiso’s imposing heritage homes, built by European immigrants in 1870, into a charming boutique hotel that fuses tradition with modernity and revives the lifestyle of the nineteenth century.
The hotel is located on the famous pedestrian walkway of Gervasoni, one of the main viewpoints of Valparaiso, and offers privileged views of this city, one of the most beautiful and touristic in all of Chile. In an area declared a UNESCO “World Cultural Heritage Site,” Gervasoni Hotel Boutique is only five minutes from the commercial area; close to cafes, shops, tourist attractions and museums; while just 15 minutes from the “Garden City” of Vina del Mar.
The hotel has 15 rooms, four of them with their own hydro-massage tub, while the views of the hills of Valparaiso and the sea unify these guest quarters, though each one has a unique personality and different decor. If breakfast is for you, as it is for many travelers, the favorite of your stay might be the “breakfast room,” whose large terrace will be your favorite corner for enjoying the morning buffet or a snack later on. In short, this is a traditional hotel, but at the same time an intimate one that will give you the feeling of being in a Valparaiso mansion of a earlier epoch.
Alfonso Tandazo is President and CEO at Surtrek Tour Operator.