Surrounded by nothing but undisturbed nature, the Alto Atacama Desert Lodge & Spa provides the perfect base for guests to immerse themselves fully in the magic of the desert and its secrets. Discover geysers, hot springs, and volcanos or go mountain biking through desert canyons and explore ancient Incan ruins. The personal stories and histories of the indigenous staff members enrich the guests’ understanding of the region and provide them with an authentic Atacama desert experience.

Location

Why is the Alto Atacama Desert Lodge & Spa one of the best places to stay in the Chilean desert?

Located in the famous Catarpe Valley, about a mile from San Pedro, the lodge blends into its environment seamlessly, making it almost invisible from afar. You might think your imagination is playing tricks on you, but this desert oasis is very real. Some of the brightest and most talented Chilean architects, designers and landscapers joined forces and created the Alto Atacama, which seems like it is a natural part of the terracotta-colored desert.

Key Facts

  • the city center of San Pedro de Atacama is 3 km away from the property
  • arrive from El Loa Airport in Calama, which is 99 km away
  • unique “Andescape” gardening concept by award-winning landscape designer Veronica Poblete, featuring local flora and ancient agricultural techniques

What is special?

  • enjoy the starry nights in the resort’s own observatory with a large Dobsonian telescope and knowledgeable staff to help you navigate it and find your very own Zodiac constellation
  • take a walk through the gardens of the Alto Atacama, a tribute to the plateau’s traditional landscaping, and explore the local flora of the desert
  • the lodge was built with recycled and eco-friendly materials while solar power heats the pools to minimize the impact on the environment

What do the guests say?

  • guest love the remote location, as it provides the perfect undisturbed dark canvas for stargazing
  • the landscaping of the property impress vacationers with lush green herb gardens, pomegranate trees, and palms all in lovely contrasts against the indigo desert sky
  • travelers love the classic desert experience and appreciate the peaceful location in the middle of the desert

Accommodation

How is my private space? What is the view from my room like?

Enjoy your desert getaway in one of Alto Atacama’s exquisite rooms inspired by regional village architecture. Choose between well-appointed guest rooms with rustic flair and elegant suites with an indoor and outdoor shower, as well as a terrace providing unique views of the salt lagoon attracting a variety of aquatic bird species. Explore the wonders of the desert, walk through the beautiful resort gardens or relax at the lodge’s own eco-friendly spa.

Key Facts

  • 42 exquisite rooms, which offer uninterrupted views of the Cordillera de la Sal Range and the Catarpe Valley
  • 10 suites with an indoor-outdoor living concept invite to rest on the private patio and fully blend in with the surrounding nature
  • each room features a rustic yet elegant décor made from local materials by craftsmen of the area

What is special?

  • every room provides an open view of the quiet Lagoon and the stunning Catarpe Valley
  • warm up by the fireplace in your living room or take advantage of the outdoor lounge areas at night with small fire pits to enjoy the remarkable sunset
  • experience the eco-friendly aspects throughout the entire hotel: only green cleaning products, as well as green spa and in-room bath products, are used in addition to low-flow taps to conserve water

What do the guests say?

  • guests appreciate the option to turn down bright lights in their room to rest eyes from the bright desert sun
  • travelers love their spacious rooms and are especially pleased with the magnificent view of the canyon and resort gardens
  • vacationers are impressed by the beautiful architecture and attention to detail in the quiet, relaxing and friendly atmosphere

Pools & Spa

Where can I rest after a long day of adventures in the desert?

Enjoy the luxury of water in the desert and the tranquility of being removed from the rest of the world, while taking a swim in one of the pools overlooking the beautiful Catarpe Valley and its red mountains. Or decide to revitalize your spirits in the spa, taking advantage of knowledgeable expert hands and aromatic scents after a day of exploring the sandy surroundings.

Key Facts

  • the spa was named one of the 10 best spas in Latin America
  • relaxation options include a Finnish Sauna, Turkish bath, Scottish showers as well as indoor and outdoor hot tubs
  • heated pools allow swimming even on colder evenings
  • the 6 spread out pools and jacuzzis give the shared area more privacy

What is special?

  • local ingredients such as quinoa and Altiplanic mud make treatments at the Puri Spa a unique experience full of pure relaxation and stress relief
  • soothe your muscles after a trekking excursion in a hydro-massage bath, in one of the saunas or in a steam bath
  • enjoy your view and lean back on the comfortable lounge chair on the outdoor terrace as you indulge in fresh fruit and chilled cucumber water after or between your treatments

What do the guests say?

  • guests especially appreciate the serene pool at the spa and love the privacy it offers
  • the attentive staff and the excellent massages at the spa impress all vacationers and have them come back for more treatments
  • travelers love having their quality spa time and recommend trying the Trilogy treatment  

Culinary

What makes the Chilean cuisine special? What local dishes and flavours will I be able to try?

Dining at the resort’s restaurant is truly a one-of-a-kind experience. Taste unique dishes made from locally grown organic produces such as socaire potatoes, native quinoa or chanar berries. The chefs of the lodge’s restaurant take pride in working closely with local farmers to give back directly to the natives. Chilean wines, spirits, and liquors made from the regional rica-rica plant round up your flavourful journey. You are even able to spot most local ingredients along your hiking trail. For an al fresco BBQ experience opt for Fogon Atacameno, the exclusive outdoor BBQ event at the resort, offering a variety of salads and local delicacies such as grilled ostrich fillet.

Key Facts

  • one main indoor dining room and two outdoor dining rooms
  • outside BBQ by the pool several times a week
  • the menu provides gluten-free and vegetarian options

What is special?

  • taste exquisite Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah or Carmenere and learn about Chilean wine making traditions, which date back to around 1548
  • enjoy your lunch or a chilled glass of wine by the water at the outdoor bar, while taking full advantage of the sunshine and the incredible surroundings of the lodge
  • intimate indoor and outdoor settings provide the opportunity to eat in the company of interesting people from all around the world

What do the guests say?

  • the daily changing chef’s menu was loved by all travelers
  • guests appreciated the variety, quality, and freshness of each menu
  • vacationers loved the breakfast buffet and complimentary wine at lunch and dinner

Activities

How can I spend my day in the Atacama Desert? What kind of activities does the lodge offer?

Activities at the Alto Atacama are all about connecting to the surrounding environment – whether to the unique landscape on selected walks, hikes, and biking routes; to the indigenous people through cultural tours created with the native populations’ heritage; or to the night sky and solar system at the open air observatory. Guests who seek adventure, a delicious gastronomic experience or the purest form of peace and tranquility: the Atacama desert offers something for everyone.

Key Facts

  • the Alto Atacama offers over 35 unique tours and excursions throughout the valley
  • knowledgeable mountaineers select hiking trails and walks for every level of experience
  • the resort offers daily free activities, which range from sightseeing and mountain climbing to cycling and thermal baths to stargazing

What is special?

  • have an authentic experience with the native guides, who grew up in the area and know every little stone in the desert
  • photographers will be able to take captivating shots on photography safaris through geyser fields, past hot springs, and on volcano trails
  • feel the incredible softness of alpaca fur at the resort’s llama and alpaca stable or hike and cuddle with the animals

What do the guests say?

  • travelers recommend booking a guided volcano hike tour to discover the best places and breathtaking views
  • vacationers loved the lodge’s complimentary activity option for which they could sign up the night before
  • the activity coordinator impressed all guest with her knowledge while making sure every guest had a personalized itinerary to their liking