South America is undeniably filled with incredible destinations that give travelers access to the world’s most breathtaking nature, wildlife, stargazing, culture and more. Beyond experiencing these wonders for the day, there are many luxury hotels in South America which give travelers a once in a lifetime opportunity to immerse themselves in the diverse landscapes of the region. Here are 7 bucket-list worthy properties which prioritize sustainability, immersion and luxury experiences:
– Sol y Luna, Sacred Valley, Peru
For an experience that feels local yet still luxury, the charming “casita” houses of Sol y Luna are the perfect getaway for those looking to explore the Sacred Valley in a boutique way, surrounded by tropical gardens full of butterflies and hummingbirds, the hotel has a gorgeous naturalistic pool and plenty of greenery. At Sol Y Luna, you’ll be surrounded by the Andean mountains of southern Peru, in bungalows situated in the midst of beautifully landscaped gardens, home to approximately 35 species of birds.
Guests of Sol y Luna have a choice of one of 43 casitas or small houses to stay in that come in 3 different classes of luxury – superior, deluxe, and premium. With a premium option, your casita comes with your own reception area and a private Jacuzzi, among other perks.
In the morning, guests can enjoy a complimentary breakfast buffet – but the property also has an array of excellent dining options that are chef prepared, using local ingredients with a focus on seasonal availability.
Guests can also make an appointment at the resort’s Yacu Wasi spa for facial treatments, massages, and steam baths – many of the treatments are even tailored specifically to acclimation to the high altitude. As part of your stay, you are welcome to use the sauna and gym, by appointment. Tai Chi and yoga classes are available to groups of two or more.
The resort has demonstrated a commitment to sustainable hospitality, with buildings constructed from locally sourced materials. Sol Y Luna also has a positive involvement with the local community, through programs that help local underprivileged children attend schools.
Sol y Luna nestles in the hills of the Sacred Valley, a short train ride from Aguas Calientes, with easy access to Machu Picchu, and with several Inca settlements on its doorstep so visitors have ample opportunity to explore the rich history and culture of the Sacred Valley.
– Pikaia Lodge, Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Getting up close and personal with the wildlife and scenery in the Galapagos is a bucket list experience for many. The legendary Galapagos Islands are world-famous for their record-beating wildlife – so what better way to take it all in than by booking a few nights on the islands themselves.
Pikaia Lodge is the first luxury hotel to be created on the archipelago – an ultra-modern building constructed of glass and black volcanic rock perched on the brim of an extinct caldera on the island of Santa Cruz. The lodge is hidden on top of an extinct volcano crater on the Galapagos Islands. The lodge is powered by solar and wind energy and features cutting edge furniture of recycled materials and aims to be a carbon neutral property. With floor to ceiling glass windows that overlook the Galapagos National Park – this is a property that is sure to be a once-in-a-lifetime stay. Offering a boutique feel, the lodge offers just 29 rooms to give personal attention to all guests. It derives its name from“Pikaia Gracilens,” which are believed to be the first creature to evolve into a vertebrate and are our oldest known ancestors.
Guests at the lodge have plenty of opportunities to explore the surrounding wildlife and scenery of the Galapagos as the lodge offers several exploration packages and day tours – including kayaking, hiking, or scuba diving and more, providing adventure seekers with a plethora of options.
The hotel’s on site restaurant, Evolution provides unrivaled views over the infinity pool to the pristine Galapagos National Park. The restaurant combines traditional Ecuadorian cuisine with modern takes on world-renowned dishes that cater to an international clientele A candle-lit dinner under the stars is also available upon special request.
Grab a drink at the “DNA” Bar and Lounge or take a break in the “Homo Sapiens” Explorers Lounge and close an epic night in one of the world’s most remote and beautiful locations with a cocktail in hand and a full day of adventure planned for tomorrow.
– Montaña Magica, Huilo Huilo Biological Reserve, Chile
For a secluded rainforest experience with unique, volcano-bungalow style architecture In the middle of the Chilean Patagonian Rainforest, you can stay in the luxury Montaña Magica which is designed to blend right into the surrounding forest. The property is near the Museo de los Volcanes, Huilo-Huilo Falls and the nearby Neltume River. Featuring furniture crafted from tree trunks, the rooms are cozy, and rustic. The property features a restaurant and a spa with saunas and a pool, and offers activities including hikes, rafting and a zip lining through the Patagonian jungle.
The otherworldly hotel looks as though it was dug into a natural stone spire, but the Montaña Mágica Lodge was in fact man-made. Using locally sourced lumber and stone, the creators of the lodging built the property for guests to feel as though they’ve stepped into a fairytale – one that surrounds them completely in nature. Water pours from the top down the sides in-between the guest windows, running under rich layers of jungle foliage growing on the exterior. Inside, each of the cozy suites is named after a local species of bird, and all feature a selection of modern amenities that rival even fancier hotels in less remote parts of the country.
Beyond its unique exterior, the hotel offers a mini golf course built into the forest itself, using the natural world as the obstacles, and there are various outdoor activities such as horseback riding, rafting, and hiking. Of course, getting to such a magical place takes a bit of doing. The ride to Montaña Mágica Lodge is at least two hours from the nearest airport, but the trek is well worth it to experience this other-worldy property.
– Awasi Patagonia, Chile
Torres del Paine National Park in southern Chilean Patagonia is one of the most remote places left on the planet. Though many choose to camp during their Patagonia vacation, Awasi gives an opportunity to get close to the natural wonders of Chilean Patagonia with the comforts of a luxury, award-winning lodge with 14 villages set on a private reserve overlooking the picturesque glaciers, granite mountains, and lakes. Guests to this hillside cabin hotel can expect to share the surrounding wilderness with guanacos, pumas and flightless rheas. As well as local wildlife, the timber lodges enjoy views of the nearby Torres del Paine mountain range and the vast Lake Sarmiento.
Each stilted, wooden villa on the property comes with a fireplace, outdoor hot tub, and a private guide so you can trek to the actual Torres del Paine. The hotel is carbon neutral, and makes efforts to preserve and protect the surrounding 340 hectares of native woodland in the surrounding Patagonia and Iguazu regions.
The hotel helps guests plan Patagonian adventures including stargazing, trekking and more. Guests are allocated a dedicated guide and private vehicle to ensure an exclusive Patagonia experience. The expert guides offer interpretive wilderness journeys to some of the region’s most famed attractions.
After a day of planned activities in the Chilean Patagonia, guests can enjoy the hotel’s restaurant which features delicious Patagonian menus which highlights the diversity of Chilean cuisine with an upscale take.
– Palacio De Sal, Bolivia
Located on the edge of the world’s largest salt flats at Uyuni, Palacio de Sal is an extraordinary hotel, continuously reconstructed from salt blocks every year.
Built in 1998 under the vision of hotelier Juan Quesada Valda,the hotel is entirely made of salt. Each room comes with a domed ceiling composed of salt bricks which often feature small stalactites – guests can even grab some salt for a taste when you touch the structure.
The hotel prides itself on its unique salt design and gastronomy, not to mention the incredibly stunning accommodations and even more spectacular salt flat views. The world’s first salt hotel is found just 15 miles from the city of Uyuni in southwest Bolivia, and enjoys a dramatic, remote setting on the banks of the world’s biggest salt flats, the Salar de Uyuni. The hotel is ideally located for relaxing in the starkest of settings, and for starting or finishing a tour of the salt flats – one of Bolivia’s prime tourist attractions.
After a day of exploring the salt flats, there’s a spacious bar with a snooker table, and several living areas with large windows where guests can relax, play cards and enjoy a drink, and, at nighttime, look at the stars. There is also a shop selling traditional Bolivian products, such as clothes made of alpaca wool. There is a spa complete with a swimming pool, fitness center and sauna.
An “out-of-this-world hotel experience” and one of Bolivia’s most luxurious options with its extraordinary activities, onsite museum, and beautiful artworks made of salt on display, Palacio de Sal never disappoints.
– Tierra Atacama, Chile
Architecturally stunning, Tierra Atacama exudes rustic chic, a remote lodge in the Atacama Desert in Chile, the driest desert in the world, making the perfect retreat for exploring the nearby salt flats, geysers, volcano, and desert itself. Staying here is an immersive experience, with exquisite views of the Licancabur Volcano and distant mountains, not forgetting the famed Uma Spa with its holistic and restorative massages, therapies, and beauty treatments. This tranquil property is nearby both San Pedro de Atacama Church, the meteorite collections at Museo del Meteorito and the ancient villages of Tulor.
The lodge’s restaurant offers food that plays on Chilean basics, including steak, lamb, some seafood as well as fresh baked bread on site. Their expansive wine list allows guests to drink terrific Chilean wines, and the pisco sour here is one of the best in the desert.
After dark, guests can go stargazing with an Atacamenan astronomer who will point out the stars in Milky Way at stargazing points more clear than anywhere else on the planet, thanks to the expansive desert and lack of artificial light.
The property features serene rooms, some with 4-poster beds, private patios, free Wi-Fi, and indoor and outdoor showers, as well as views of Licancabur Volcano.
– Titilaka, Peru
Perched on a Peruvian peninsula on the stunning banks of Lake Titicaca, Titilaka hotel is found in middle of some of the world’s most remote and spectacular surroundings. Lake Titicaca is known for being the birthplace of the Incan Empire, and offers a world of history, outdoor adventure and solitude. Enjoying this stunning destination is easy at Titilaka, a modern full service resort which offers incredible panoramic lake views, creative dining experiences that combine seasonal produce and traditional Andean Ingredients, and unique cultural experiences like visiting the local Uros community. The hotel is committed to sustainability as more than 90% of staff are locals and the property sources food locally, while its business model focuses on conserving Andean traditions. Not to mention, with its isolated location and lack of light pollution, sunsets and the star-speckled night sky here are once-in-a-lifetime experiences.
Adventuring through South America doesn’t have to mean giving up luxury along the way. If you’re interested in sleeping under the stars, seeing a volcano through your window, or getting up close with wildlife, let us plan your itinerary and a stay at one of these gorgeous luxury hotels in South America! Contact us today at Kuoda to plan your next adventure.