Wine retreats, wildlife havens, and rustic lodges set near ancient ruins all fit the bill, say T+L readers.
You could spend a lifetime crisscrossing South America and still never grow bored of its landscapes. The spire of Huayna Picchu reaching up through the mists blanketing the ruins below. The enormous crenellations of the Cordillera del Paine mountains. The Atacama Desert’s star-flooded skies. And if you can experience that kind of wild beauty and spend the night sleeping on sheets with a sky-high thread count after lulling yourself to drowsiness with a glass of Malbec? Well, so much the better.
Every year for our World’s Best Awards survey, Travel + Leisure asks readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the globe — to share their opinions on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airlines, and more. Hotels were rated on their facilities, location, service, food, and overall value. Hotels were classified as City or Resort based on their locations and amenities.
Related: The 2018 World's Best Awards
If great wines are what you’re after, all three Argentinean spots on this year’s list will fit the bill. In Mendoza, Vines Resort & Spa and Cavas Wine Lodge are both ideally situated for tasting tours of the region. “Cavas Wine Lodge is what brings us back to Mendoza,” said one reader. “They schedule visits to wineries; whatever you want to do, they make it happen.” And Vines is actually set on a 1,500-acre private vineyard.
In the southern stretches of the country, Eolo – Patagonia’s Spirit is a luxurious jumping off point to the namesake region, and its restaurant’s wine program showcases exclusively Argentinean producers. You can sip a world-class wine in this end-of-the-earth setting after a day of horseback riding or guided nature walks.
Over in Chile, the Singular Patagonia keeps things simple in its spacious guest rooms — why bother with chintz when you’ve got massive plate-glass windows framing the fjord of Last Hope Sound? The views are radically different, though no less impressive, in Peru’s Sacred Valley, at spots like Inkaterra Hacienda Urubamba and Tambo del Inka, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa. As for our No. 1 pick — suffice it to say you’ll be spoiled for every panorama thereafter. Read on for more on this year’s winner, and the full list of the top resorts in South America.