The Lapostolle Residence is located at the wineryís showcase winemaking facility, built in 2004-2005, where they produce their high-end labels, Clos Apalta and Borobo. Guests can tour the state-of-the-art facility, as well as opting for any number of activities such as hiking, biking or horseback-riding the propertyís 1,600 acres, getting in-room massages, hanging out by the pool, visiting the nearby town of Santa Cruz, and, of course, taking wine-tours to nearby wineries such as the world-famous Montes, a feng-shui-designed winery where they play Gregorian chants to the wines aging in barrels around the clock; MontGras, where you can also go horseback-riding and enjoy a barbecue out in the vineyards after blending your own wine; cooking classes with chef Pilar Rodriguez at Viu Manent; and Santa Cruz, which has hiking trails, a series of indigenous-style display buildings, and a sky tram up to its small observatory.
Back at the Residence, there are four standalone casitas, each decorated individually, and each named after a grape varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot and Carmenere, after Chileís signature grape. The staff told us that Merlot, decorated with pink accents, is the most romantic, but we liked the green-hued Carmenere casita with its small work desk and two armchairs cozied around the fireplace, a king-size bed upon a raised step, small separate kitchenette, and a nifty windowed hallway leading to the massive bathroom with double vanities overlooking the valley floor, as well as a deep soaking tub and separate shower, plus a private outdoor deck for quiet time.
Back at the main house, guests enjoy multi-course gourmet meals in keeping with the Relais & Chateaux ethos, all paired with Casa Lapostolle wines. Dinner might include a starter like a corn-pumpkin cream soup with scallops; a main course of local lamb chops with seasonal ratatouille; and for dessert, a tiramisu with Grand Marnier.
Next time we head to Chile, weíre definitely booking a casita, but if you come when theyíre closed in July-August, you can also consider a stay at another of Chileís best-known wineries, and a historic property with fantastic activities for horse-lovers such as a traditional Chilean rodeo, a jumping school and polo matches: Casa Silva.
Rates at Casa Lapostolle start at $500 per person per night including all meals and activities.
Full disclosure: Eric Rosen visited Chile as a guest of Wines of Chile, but all opinions expressed are entirely his own.