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Around South America, hoteliers and cruise companies are upping the ante to please the most demanding travelers.
“People are looking for an experience, including in food and beverage,” said Gerardo Murray, regional vice president of brands and marketing in Mexico, Latin America and the Caribbean for InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG). “That has taken us on the path to develop new gastronomic experiences.”
At the IHG properties in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Cartagena, Colombia, for example, on-site restaurants have developed locally inspired menus.
IHG also aims to please health-conscious globetrotters — most notably with the 2021 debut of Six Senses Spa Formosa Bay, which will be set on a former coconut plantation on Brazil’s northeastern Atlantic coast. The wellness-oriented Six Senses brand is one of IHG’s most recent acquisitions.
IHG is just one of several major hotel brands increasing their upscale offerings and experiences in South America.
This summer, Fairmont Hotels is scheduled to open its first property in South America, with the debut of Fairmont Rio de Janeiro Copacabana. Meanwhile, in Peru, JW Marriott El Convento Cusco now offers chef-led tours to San Pedro Market. In Ecuador, guests at JW Marriott Quito can sign up for new vinotherapy wellness treatments. Additionally, last year, Peru’s Country Club Lima Hotel unveiled the Dom Perignon Suite, a renovated presidential suite that includes a bottle of champagne and other VIP amenities.
Smaller properties have increased their options, too. Entre Cielos Wine Hotel + Spa, a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World located in Mendoza, Argentina, recently opened eight new vineyard lofts, set within the 8-acre malbec vineyard. Later this year, the company will open a new eco-camp with eight luxuriously appointed tented shelters and a program focused on food, wine and nature.
Also in the upscale glamping category is Corocora Camp, which opened last November in Colombia’s Los Llanos region. Featured on a 12-day itinerary offered by luxury travel company Red Savannah, the camp — which is located on a private nature reserve — has four safari-style canvas tents with a private terrace, king or twin beds and an en-suite bathroom.
Amazon River cruises provide yet another opportunity to explore nature without skimping on the amenities. Last year, Delfin Amazon Cruises became the first cruise operator to join the portfolio of luxury travel brand Relais & Chateaux. Delfin’s ships have large suites with private terraces — some with private whirlpool baths. This is in addition to upscale Aqua Expeditions, which offers chef-hosted departures onboard the posh Aria Amazon with chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino.