Patagonia Travel Guide
We are suckers for a room with a killer view. We find that we are even more likely to forgive some minor hotel inconveniences if we can stare out the window at something pretty--yeah we are that shallow. Let's help out our fellow hotel mavens by uploading rooms with killer views to the HotelChatter/Flickr photo pool, or by sending the photo along to us. We will feature our favorites in this space from time to time. Remember to tell us the name of the hotel and the room number of the hot view.
Look at this freaking view. No, just look at it.
Can you imagine sipping some tea with your feet up in your hotel room staring out at that view? The clear skies, the blue water it looks like a fantasy world.
This is the view from the Explora Hotel Salto Chico on the shore of Lake Pehoé in Patagonia, right in Torres del Paine Park, which was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site. The location is pretty remote you fly from Santiago to Punta Arenas, and then an Explora staffer will meet you at the airport and drive you to the hotel; the trip takes about 5 hours from Santiago. But, um, it's worth it, dontchya think?
The hotel develops "explorations" for guests; each day, you get your pick of 5 different explorations (which have been designed/selected according to the weather, duration and difficulty). Room rates include those explorations, airport transportation and three meals per day, but the all-inclusive-awesomeness will cost you: rates start at $2,660 for a four-night stay. Check out all the info you need here. Or just continue gazing at this picture.
[Photo: Ben Oh]
Cubicle Dreamin' is a feature in which we ask the hotel mavens to take some time out of their busy work day, surf the Internet, and tell us what hotel they wish they could beam themselves to right that very second--all on the slave driving companies dime, of course. Oh, like these people aren't surfing aimlessly anyway--at least now their purposeless clicking will be cobbled together into useful hotel stories--we hope. Have a destination hotel you are just dying to leave your cube for? Send the story our way.
In this episode, Hotel Maven Claire heads to a dude ranch. Enjoy.
As winter descends on us, the idea of immersing oneself in the parched desert becomes more and more appealing. While buried beneath a few feet of snow, a fantasy of galloping on horseback through the sands of Arizona helps with the defrosting process.
Dude ranches are a way to live out this fantasy. And Arizona's Circle Z is the most effective way to live out our post-Nickelodeon Hey Dude" dreams in real life. The place recently reopened for business for the season on October 28:
A guest ranch operated continuously since 1926. Celebrating 82 years of excellence, the Circle Z Ranch is situated on 6,500 acres at 4,000 feet altitude.
Guests ride ranch-bred horses through the foothills of the historic Santa Rita Mountains and under huge cottonwood trees along the ever-flowing Sonoita Creek. As a quiet, family oriented ranch, we put emphasis on riding and down-home hospitality.
Giddy Up! The only thing bursting our bubble is that we need some dough. In the high season (basically now through April), weekly stays start at $1140 per adult. Children ages 6-15 are $785 for the week and children under six are much cheaper at $455, but they can't ride the horsies.
The stays are Sunday to Sunday and a three-night minimum is required. Ok then...now Giddy Up!