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All Around El Aguamiel, a 6-Room Hotel in Argentina's Wine Country

June 26, 2012 at 12:07 PM | by | ()

We had our DSLR camera stolen in Argentina, while attempting to bike the wine routes outside of Mendoza. It was a harrowing experience we cringe to remember, but luckily we were staying at the rural 6-room Hotel El Aguamiel at the time and returning from being interrogated by 15 bulletproof vest-wearing officers to our little slice of vineyard heaven far outweighs all the negative. Yes, we can't wait to go back.

El Aguamiel is a property we chanced upon, while browsing the Argentina offerings on flash hotel sale site Jetsetter.com. Yes, we were heading in the direction of Mendoza and yes, we could totally take a couple days to chill out surrounded by the grapes that make the Malbecs we ordered from brunch 'til midnight.

At $169 per night with free WiFi and breakfast, it was a no-brainer. Sadly the hotel is no longer listed on Jetsetter, but here's hoping it returns soon.

As we said, there are only six rooms and all are the same, though the rooms feel more like cottages with peaked roofs and semi-private patios looking straight out to the vineyards and the snow-capped Andes beyond. The area is not like sprawling resort, but you are free to wander through the many vine rows that provide just enough for the hotel to produce its own Malbec. This is served, along with excellent cuisine, in the small restaurant and lounge.

Aside from this, there's a pool. That's the whole place: 6 cottage-rooms, a restaurant/lounge, a pool, a vineyard and...one more little structure that belongs to the owners, who are also the architects and, depending on your check-in time, the receptionists.

El Aguamiel is simple, clean, refreshing and quiet. The attention to interior design detail makes it seems built specially for a spread in the likes of Wallpaper while its exterior views and greenery is seemingly cut from a cover of Conde Nast Traveler.

Say hi to Anna, El Aguamiel's resident doggy. She knows not to enter the restaurant or your room, but she is totally up for a game of catch in the sprawling yard between the rooms and the start of the vineyard. That puppy has a very good life. See Anna in action in our video here. Or just enjoy the brief video of the grounds, below.

Some notes if you stay: El Aguamiel is not walking or biking distance from anything; you must have a rental car or a taxi. The hotel can always call cars for you. Bring snacks if you intend to vege out at the hotel all day; the restaurant serves awesome meals, but they are expensive and made for a formal sit-down. The rooms don't have kitchenettes, but there's always fresh fruit in a tray by the pool. The peaches. OMG THE PEACHES. Eat the peaches.'

TOMORROW: Inside the rooms!

[Photos and video: Cynthia Drescher for HotelChatter]

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