Room review: Three nights at the best luxury hotel in Santiago, Chile

Travel News from Stuff - 22-05-2023
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Experience luxury and elegance in Chile's capital city before embarking on onward travel around South America.

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Owned by an established Santiago family that have been in the hotel business since moving to Chile in the late 19th century, The Singular is renowned as the city's best luxury hotel.

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The property's modern but stylish facade blends in seamlessly with the Beaux Arts and Art Deco architecture of the surrounding Lastarria neighbourhood, and it's handily placed for exploring Santiago highlights including the neoclassical Santiago Cathedral and colourful Barrio Bellavista.

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European-inspired design dominates at The Singular, with the hotel's downstairs lobby, bar and lounge area enlivened with leather armchairs, antique prints, and idiosyncratic art detailing the quirky ephemera of science and natural history.

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Decor in the hotel's 62 spacious and super-comfortable rooms and suites is lighter in touch, coolly cosmopolitan in neutral tones, and offering a relaxing haven from Santiago's impetuous Latin American energy.

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Our King room – very spacious at 40sqm – included antique prints of the French palace gardens of Versailles, screen prints resembling the visually arresting work of M.C. Escher, and Art Deco-style table and floor lamps.

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Linger longer with an in-room coffee machine, the biggest bath towels this side of the International Date Line, and an equally capacious bathroom – with both bath and shower – lined in cooling Carrara marble, and adorned with black-and-white photography. Sustainable bath products are from the Bioderm range.

Arrive just before dusk for brilliant twilight views of Santiago's Cerro San Cristobal from The Singular's ninth-floor rooftop bar and lounge.

Only-in-South America shared plates include empanadas crammed with Patagonian king crab, and a delicate tartare made with Tierra del Fuego guanaco (a smaller species related to alpacas and llamas).

If it's a cooler evening, sit inside at the 8m-long marble bar. Served in The Singular's Asian-inspired downstairs café, breakfast is a sprawling à la carte affair with daily juice specials including local fruits like cherimoya (custard apple).

Adjacent is Santiago's bohemian Lastarria neighbourhood, the city's oldest residential precinct, and now a raffish and hip walking street combining bookshops, colourful street art, a regular night market, and some of Santiago's best cafés, bars and restaurants.

A recommended lunch is gourmet sandwiches and Chilean craft beer at José Ramón 277. After-dark options after checking out pavement vendors selling unique screen prints and designer totes and t-shirts include Chipe Libre Républica Independiente del Pisco – for guided tasting flights of pisco, South America's signature spirit – and Bocanariz where regional Chilean wines are paired with cheese, charcuterie and shared plates.

A rejuvenating post-flight session in The Singular's onsite spa.

Recommended therapies to combat jet lag after the 11-hour direct flight from Auckland include aromatherapy treatments and the relaxing bliss of the Piedras Calientes (hot stones) massage. There's also a compact sauna and a rooftop swimming pool with views of Cerro San Cristobal.

Friendly and professional service from everyone including the check-in team and the hospitality staff in the breakfast restaurant and rooftop bar.

Chileans can be relatively reserved, but the team at The Singular strike the perfect balance of warmth and discretion.

Amenities in the post-spa relaxation area are slightly perfunctory and don't reflect the elegance and excellence of other areas of the hotel.

A boutique urban stay perfect for alleviating jet lag before travelling on to adventures around South America.

Room rates start from around NZ$350. See:

LATAM Airlines operates non-stop daily flights from Auckland to Santiago. See:

Flying generates carbon emissions. To reduce your impact, consider other ways of travelling, amalgamate your trips, and when you need to fly, consider offsetting emissions.


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