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From the same sophisticated stable as Tierra Chiloe, Tierra Atacama is an immaculate boutique hotel in the Atacama Desert.
With the emphasis firmly on the use of local materials, Tierra Atacama is a sleek vision of wooden decking and furnishings, and clean lined stone walls. All the rooms have private terraces and views of the Licancabur volcano (except the family rooms, which look on to a garden) and the internal design is pared back but supremely elegant.
The restaurant focuses on Chilean and Andean produce and specialities, from quinoa and local lamb to fresh seafood from Chile's enviably long Pacific coastline, all complimented, naturally, by a fine selection of Chilean wines. Try a bottle from a winemaker who grows carmenere - a grape variety now extinct in France but which makes excellent high altitude Chilean wines.
The Tierra Atacama bar offers a full range of cocktails from throughout Latin America, such as caipirinha and mojitos and Chilean favourite the pisco sour, plus artisanal beers from local breweries.
Guests can work off the almost inevitable over-indulgence by making the most of the impressive array of activities on offer from the hotel, from trekking trails and mountain bike routes to volcano scrambles and horse riding. 4x4 excursions in to the Atacama Desert proper and to local destinations such as rock art sites are also available.
Back in the immense comfort of the hotel, guests can enjoy pampering treatments in the Uma Spa, which also has indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a steam room and a Jacuzzi. Outside, guests can wander the gardens, designed by Teresa Moller, a renowned Chilean landscape artist, and complete with fire pits and spectacular views of Licancabur volcano at almost every turn.
The hotel is built in the spot where cattle drivers from Argentina on route to the port of Antofagasta used to spend the night. The ancient adobe walls have been cleverly incorporated into the entrance.
Will, Original Traveller