Insider Blog

Filter By Category: Accommodation
  • Elite Hotels of Santiago, Chile

    For years, Santiago had a reputation as a sleepier version of other cities on the continent, with adequate lodging offerings, but not much that really stood out. In recent years, that trend has reversed, and Santiago has several elite options, from traditional international chains, to fashion-forward boutique hotels. There’s something to fit nearly every upscale taste in Santiago.

  • Visiting Luxury Hotels on Easter Island

    On a tiny, far-flung island—thousands of miles from any other populated land—that 6,000 people call home, hundreds of giant stone statues that used to stand sentry, lay in various states. Half-buried, fallen over, repurposed, and most famously, standing tall and photogenic, the moai of Easter Island are part of the mystery that makes this such an enticing tourist destination.

    There’s a long oral history, as well as recent archaeological investigations, to answer questions about why they were erected, why the culture of carving and transporting moai stopped, and later, why the people themselves decided to topple them. There exists a living culture that involves traditional dance, music, food and carving, mostly Polynesian-influenced, but with touches of South America as well.

    There’s no denying the island’s appeal, for cultures present and past, as well as its stark natural beauty. It’s an island with volcanic craters, just a handful of paved roads, few vehicles, a postcard-perfect white sand beach, and a calm vibe that means you can be as active or as relaxed as you like.

    There are four world-renowned 5-star hotels on Isla de Pascua, each with a different architecture and focus, allowing travelers to choose the luxury experience that best suits them.

  • Photo: Dan Nevill

    Baños: Gateway to the Amazon

    Some twenty years ago, Baños hit Ecuador’s tourism scene. It was a nothing little town that suddenly became the Mecca for European – mainly German – renegades of the modern life. They decided Baños was a perfect place to settle, far from the ills of developed society, in a picture-perfect setting amidst jungles and waterfalls and a dramatic active volcano.

  • Photo: Terra Hall

    Welcome to the Jungle: Peru’s Piece of Heaven on Earth

    With its towering trees and endless landscape, the Peruvian Amazon is quickly becoming a hot-spot for environmentally conscious travelers looking to experience one of the most diverse ecosystems in the world. In an attempt to meet demand, ecolodges in the Amazon jungle are becoming more and more common. While each has an array of amenities, unique itineraries and different opportunities to see the plants and animals that inhabit the rainforest, Refugio Amazonas’ commitment to sustainable travel makes it stand out from the rest.

  • Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous at Ponta Dos Ganchos

    Let me preface this blog post by saying I have stayed in a lot of insane hotel rooms around the world. A lot. There was the absolutely ridiculous bungalow at the Six Senses Yao Noi, overlooking Phang Nga Bay in Ko Yao Noi, Thailand; there were the postcard-perfect vineyard views from the Poetry Inn in Sonoma, California; there was the memorable granite bathtub suite at Sabi Sands Game Reserve in South Africa; there was the insanely perfect Andes views from Cavas Wine Lodge in Mendoza, Argentina. The list goes on and on, nearly 80 countries deep at this point (don’t hate the player, hate the game).

  • Top 5 Haciendas in the Andes

    This is just my humble intent of trying to single out the best mountain haciendas in the country, which is not an easy task. There are just too many high-quality accommodations in rural Ecuador to name such a few. Haciendas, colonial estates that would also flourish during the early Republican era in Ecuador, were basically enormous farms owned by wealthy families. As the industrial revolution helped create modern cities and left agricultural livelihoods behind, many of these haciendas lost their purpose; today, some have become first-rate tourism ventures instead, beautiful places to stay with excellent accommodations, reflecting a deep history and offering dreamy Andean landscapes to savor.

  • Photo: Kevin Raub

    Weekend Getaway: Búzios

    French bombshell Brigitte Bardot didn’t discover Armação dos Búzios (Búzios for short) but when she decided in 1964, at the top of her fame, to hide away in this small, unknown fishing village north of Rio de Janeiro for three months, she helped the world discover Búzios. The timeline of this gorgeous Brazilian beach resort, home to 23 some-odd beaches, each more perfect than the next, can be divided in two parts: B.B (Before Bardot) and A.B (After Bardot).

  • Photo: Kevin Raub

    The Buffalo Brigade: A Visit to Ilha do Marajó

    When the first thing I saw upon arrival was a young girl bathing her dog in the river, I knew things were different on Ilha do Marajó, a river island nearly the size of Switzerland at the mouth of the Amazonas, Tocantins and Xingú rivers on the northern tip of Pará state. Outside of urban areas, most Brazilians wouldn’t think twice about a dirty dog, but the Marajoara do things their own way. So much so that ironically enough, dogs aren’t even the usual pet of choice.

  • The World’s Biggest Pool: San Alfonso del Mar

    Chile is well-known for having a coastline that is almost 3,000 miles long. And with all that beachfront real estate, there is something for everyone. There are horseshoe-shaped coves for splashing, in the north at Guanaqueros, or in the central region, at El Canelo. There is surfing, in the north near Iquique, and famously at the big wave competition site Pichilemu in the central south.

    And, since 2007, on the central coast, just a little over an hour’s drive from Santiago, there is also the world’s largest swimming pool, located at the beach. And it makes perfect sense.

  • Escape to the Lakes

    It’s hot in Buenos Aires: prime time to flee the big city. If surf and sand isn’t your idea of paradise, skip the crowds along Argentina’s Atlantic coast. There’s a cooler, mellower summertime getaway awaiting in the lakes district – hike to high cliffs over the water, plunge through a shallow river on horseback, catch a fish, recline at an eco-friendly spa, or just indulge your chocolate addiction in Bariloche.

  • Photo: Senderos

    Weekend Getaway: Reserva do Ibitipoca

    Most folks think of Brazil as a beach destination. Rightfully so, there’s no denying Brazil was sun-kissed by God almighty himself when perfect sands were being dished out to Earth. But Brazil is also home to a massive interior of pastoral hills flush with hidden waterfalls, deep canyons, rolling coffee plantations and dramatic rocky landscapes which come along with a culture entirely different from that of the beach – no bikini necessary.

    One of Brazil’s most beautiful countryside destinations is the state of Minas Gerais, which is famous for colonial towns, hearty cuisine and cachaça, Brazil’s local firewater; but is perhaps best known for the friendliness of its people. I have a little joke in Brazil: Whenever I meet a Brazilian that I immediately love to death, they are almost always a Mineiro. To that end, Mineiros are especially good at hospitality. If you are visiting Belo Horizonte, Brazil’s third biggest city, on business or pleasure, consider hanging around a bit and making the 195-mile trek south to Reserva do Ibitipoca; better yet, if you’re in Rio de Janeiro (for pleasure – what else?), it’s even an even closer journey: 157 miles. But regardless of where you come from, this luxury plantation is a world away.

  • At Home in the Big City

    When you’re visiting one of the largest cities in the world, it’s easy to feel lost in the crowd. But a wave of new businesses are scaling down to offer travelers more personalized experiences in Buenos Aires. Here are a few of my favorites from this spring, including a closed-door restaurant with a gorgeous communal table and a sophisticated townhouse-style hotel with only a handful of rooms.

  • 5 Blowout Brazilian Beach Houses

    Anyone who has visited Brazil since the strengthening of the Brazilian Real a few years ago, and certainly anyone who has looked into hotel accommodations for upcoming mega world events like the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympic Games, are surely intimately familiar with the Portuguese term, “Custo Brasil,” or “Brazilian Cost,” a phrase used to (explain? justify?) the rising costs of doing business in this South American giant and, as a result, prices that leave visitors often sticker shell-shocked. There’s no sugarcoating it: Brazil is an expensive country to visit.

    But there are ways to cut costs. One excellent idea is to steer away your dream of sleeps on the sands from often high-priced hotels and pousadas to pooling your money, resources and groups of friends into renting an entire piece of paradise all for yourselves. That’s where the Brazilian Beach House Company comes in. Started by English expat Steven Chew in 2005, the company specializes in finding fully-staffed beach homes for all budgets on the most pristine patches of sand the country has to offer. Often times, if a group of friends or couples split costs, you can rest your weary heads in paradise for a fraction of the cost of an overpriced pousada – and turn an entire luxury home into your own private Eden (with a private chef to boot).

    We asked Steven to highlight a few of his favorite homes in Brazil, from Bahia to Rio de Janeiro (*and we threw in our personal favorite in as well). It’s a tall order as luxury beach homes are something Brazil does very well indeed.  “Here are my list of five favorites,” he says. “Or at least some of the them as the list could have run and run …”

    Without further adieu …

  • Photo:

    Boutique Hotels in Santiago

    Santiago, Chile, is a large city of almost 7 million people, and hotels to suit most budgets. And while some of the world’s most well known 4 and 5-star chain hotels can be found in the city, but for a more personal touch, a boutique hotel may be just what you had in mind. Below are three of Santiago’s best-reviewed boutique hotels, one in Bellavista, and two in Providencia.

  • Photo: Ben Bowes

    Unusual Hotels in Chile

    Chile’s variety of natural landscapes, from glaciers and granite spires in the far south, to Valdivian rainforest in the mid-south, and up through all the shades of the Atacama desert in the north, create a great backdrop for a variety of adventures. To add another element of adventure, choose from one of the following non-conventional hotels that span the length of the country, and include domes, traditional stilted houses and a hotel that itself looks like a rainfall-covered mountain.

  • Photo: Palmazul

    Coastal Comfort: Upscale and Down to Earth along Ecuador’s Coast

    Though it has pristine beaches and breathtaking ocean vistas, the coast is not a destination that people associate with Ecuador.   The reason has more to do with other great things to see first (Galapagos, Amazon Jungle, Andes Mountains) than it does a lack of beauty and attraction.

    The Ecuadorean coast is a rustic, unexploited charm often enjoyed by the more casual international traveler who has time to meander along the ocean.  It is also a popular destination for local, Ecuadorean families seeking a respite from the Andean scenery.

    But typically, the coast gets overlooked by more refined travelers from overseas.  However, two destinations in Manabi Province stand out as locations to be considered by any traveler: Casa Ceibo in Bahia de Caraquez and Palmazul Hotel & Spa in San Clemente.

  • Luxury Hotels in Cusco

    Cusco surprises me each time I visit it. Although I’ve lived in this vibrant city, I still discover new things each time I go back – new streets, restaurants, people. But in the last year, I’ve been noticing  colonial houses restored into luxury hotels. I’m inviting you to discover my favorite ones.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Terms & Conditions

Comments or opinions expressed in the Only in South America blog (the “Blog”) are those of their respective authors and contributors only. LATAM Airlines Group S.A. does not guarantee that the information contained on this blog is accurate or complete, and that it does not necessarily represent the views of the company, its management or employees. LATAM Airlines Group S.A. is not responsible for, and disclaims any and all liability for the content of comments written by authors to the Blog.

Although the Company welcomes feedback from customers, this Blog is not intended to replace its Customer Relations Service. Comments or queries relating to specific issues beyond the scope of the Blog discussions should be directed to