Leaving Santiago by bus, the plan was to head to Mendoza and have a day or two in Los Penitentes at the Ayelen Hotel on the way. The scenery on the bus ride was pretty amazing, just kept getting better and better and unfortunately after a few hours we'd arrived.
Hadn't done a lot of research beforehand but Steve & Mecha (the owners) were very helpful and were able to answer all my questions and take my booking last minute.
When I arrived, I was met by Steve and from the start I knew it was going to be a good stay. The place had a really warm and welcoming feel and the view from my room was pretty special.
It felt like I was in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by 4,000m snow capped peaks and the view of 6992m Mt. Acongagua was unbelievable. I ended up staying 5 days and did a buch of shorter treks - there are treks for all skill levels! You can go exploring all day, sit in a quiet corner reading a book and peering out the big glass windows to the peaks and by night enjoy awesome meals (the steak was huge!!), and glass of wine by the fire. I could not fault Steve's and Mecha's hospitality and sometimes felt like I was the only one there!!
The hotel is older but everything is big and spacious including the rooms and with all the renovation plans Steve and Mecha have planned, I can't wait to see the changes when I return. I might even make it to Mendoza!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A uniquely located hotel, directly between the two entrances to the Parque Provincial Aconcagua. Under new management and a program of renovation, Hotel Ayelen is an excellent choice for relaxation, comfort, good food and great company for anyone looking to experience the high Andes. ... more less