First opened in 1970, El, seven miles from Patagonia’s famed mountain resort Bariloche, had a reputation for restrained elegance throughout the seventies. But decades of neglect ended in 2006, when a new owner, Buenos Aires art collector Ignacio Gutiérrez Zaldívar, completed a $5-million refurbishment. Now, this modern-art showcase—set in a secluded copse of fir, pine, and sequoia along Lake Nahuel Huapi—is done up in a muted, coffee-and-cream color scheme. Sofa-filled common spaces are bedecked with 300 works of modern Argentine art, and in the 33 spacious guest rooms, Egyptian cotton, goose down, and fine linen make up in coziness what they lack in flair. A stay here is worth ever penny for the superlative comfort surrounded by abundant, Patagonian nature.