One of our travel editors can’t stay away from Patagonia, for treks through stunning national parks, for some of the best trout fishing in the world, for whitewater rafting. But, ultimately, because it is pristine. Patagonia is what Yosemite or Yellowstone must have been like a century ago. Here are two hotels he discovered on his recent trip.
Pucón, Los Lagos
Originally the Hacienda Hotel Vira Vira, this resort reopened as an &Beyond property in late 2018 following a comprehensive refurbishment. Set on a 55-acre estate on the Liucura River in the shadow of the snowcapped Villarrica Volcano, this intimate retreat comprises 19 guest accommodations, including a five-bedroom hacienda that may be rented only in its entirety. Many of the spacious Suites come with picture windows offering river and wooded mountain views, earth-toned color schemes enlivened with vibrant Chilean rugs, handwoven tapestries, local artwork and Mapuche artifacts, and private decks. Villas are augmented by woodburning fireplaces and hot tubs. The beautiful main lodge, built almost entirely from lenga wood and encompassing a sleek wooden dining room serving outstanding locally sourced cuisine, features large windows that allow natural light to flood the space.
What our editor says: “We could have spent several days simply indulging in spa treatments and soaking in one of the hot tubs, but Chile is a place where outdoor activities are almost mandatory. Each evening at Vira Vira, a member of the staff sits down with guests to make plans for the following day.”
Read more about &Beyond Vira Vira.
Set atop a cliff, this handsome lodge is located within sight of one of the more placid sections of the Futaleufú River, outside the small town of the same name. Once owned by Doug Tompkins, the founder of North Face, and his wife, this property encompasses just 15 guest accommodations tucked away in a forest of beeches and cypresses, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, an outdoor Jacuzzi and a spa with a sauna, hammam and fitness center. All lodgings display an attractive interior design that features expanses of blond-wood paneling, private decks and sitting areas. Many of the ingredients employed by the kitchen are sourced from the estate’s own farms and orchards. A wide array of adventures can be arranged. Not to be missed are the horseback riding excursions and the whitewater rafting trips.
What our editor says: “The first things I noticed when I checked into my quarters were the huge picture windows that afforded views of the confluence of the Futaleufú and Espolón rivers, meadows dotted with grazing sheep and cattle, and mountains beyond, some of which were still dusted with summer snow. Even better, I was able to enjoy these vistas from every possible position in my room.”
Read more about Uman Lodge.