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“Remota: NEED MAJOR TRAINING for the prices/level they claim to be at”
Review of Remota

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Remota
Ranked #4 of 26 Hotels in Puerto Natales
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 4 January 2009

Patagonia is worth the trip! Amazing activities and the most beautiful landscape. Remota's redeeming point: Guides/Excursions.
Service/Food/Management: NEEDS MAJOR IMPROVEMENT to be at caliber they claim to be at

The hotel charges 5 star prices, and does NOT deliver 5 star service. (except for during daily guided excursions, which saved the trip).
The restaurant is completely lacking, food is mediocre at best (for the money, they could do much better) Even simple dishes could work, but they repeat and lack in creativity and initiative. There is no organization, staff is highly UNtrained.

meetings w/ guides the night before next day tours are also disorganized and could be done much more simply. guides write on scraps of paper, only to often fail to imput into the computer, thus resulting in errors the next morning.

Organization and management in my opinion starts at the top. The manager, continuously attempted to make small talk, asked us several times when we were leaving and our room number (mind you: we were there on a 7 night "all-inclusive"). They also charge extra for rides to and from airport if not during they 2 scheduled pickups/dropoffs per day (210 US extra!) but we saw many odd times and questioned this "rule".

we were never given a tour of the hotel or even directions on how things worked, until we asked and figured it out ourselves. OK for a place where you can do what you wish, but here, we have to pre-book and organize the night before what we wish to do the following day. The website and brochure claims 27 excursions (20 of which are available in the summer). We saw much repetition and several, not offered during our stay.

The guides we met were exceptional for the most part in their knowledge of the area, fauna, geology and history. This was THE SAVING GRACE! we loved all our activities and the natural beauty is unrivaled. We did 8 hour hike to Torres del Paine base, horse riding at Sierra Dorotea, Rock climbed (not usually offered aparently, but I had always wanted to try and found another couple so between the 4 of us, we got to try), kayaked....Non stop and wonderful. The guides subcontracted (the hotel was full w/ large groups and their 6 or 7 guides couldnt handle all, so they hire independent contractors) were among the best we met there. Seemed at times that the small / individual groups or couples suffered from Hotel being full w/ large large groups of Americans.
Even some common areas, seemed "closed" to others, while the large group had special events. This should be explained in advance.

New Year's Eve, nothing was announced or done in advance. A 1 line note posted, stating dinner for NYE at 22:00. It was a buffet, which got completely wiped out so quickly that when some smaller tables approached, there was NO FOOD left, until they replaced it SLOWLY over time. Champagne toast was not very organized and people had to approach the bar, rather than getting this at their dinner tables. No decoration, no candles NOTHING was done.

I am not one to complain, and travel ALOT domestically and internationally. I feel it is imperative I mention all this as the cost of this hotel resembles / or even exceeds others we have visited in various locations, that gave much much more.

I suggest the staff spend 1 week at Blackberry Farm in TN, or Ikies in Santorini, or La-Bandita in Tuscany, to learn about customer service and hospitality.

One important suggestion: fruit or any snack around the hotel late afternoon would be wonderful. Most activites offered are 3+ hour hikes, with some as long as 8 hours. People need to have snacks/food. The best food was on the excursions, often packed in the backpack of the guide. Dinner food was over sauced, lacked seasoning and often was repetitive.

If they offered a "suggestions" form, that would maybe help improve things.

We heard there that for the 20-30% price difference, Explora offers MUCH MUCH more (including massages and other spa services in the "all-in" price)> Remota does not.

I would return to the area and redo any/all the activities, but hire my own guide and probably (from what I saw in town at the independent tour operators) spend 1/4 of what I spent at remota (and eat better).
we went into town 2 nights to avoid the food there and loved Indigo's small restaurant and a pizzeria in town called Mesita Grande. all homemade.

  • Stayed: December 2008, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank fesoicher
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 30 October 2008

I stayed at this fabulous hotel with two other friends. I found the design of the building and the inside of the hotel very modern and comfortable. This hotel contains exquisite and interesting sites that you can really enjoy them. I think this is a very unique hotel worthwhile staying. The hotel staff were very pleasant and very helpful. The food was exceptionally delicious accompanied with excellent Chilean wines. The tour we took to Torres del Paine was outstanding the well thought of. Felipe, our tour guide, was very knowledgeable of the park and spoke fluent English.
In general, we had a wonderful experience and highly recommend you stay in Remota.
Adriana Vohden, Wash. D.C.

  • Stayed: October 2008, travelled with friends
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1  Thank AdrianaVirginia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 September 2008

I'm a little late in writing this review, but I stayed here for 4 nights in December 07. Like many people, I found Remota when the Explora was booked. I didn't have high expectations, but I was very happily surprised.

While the architecture is a little weird, the building and it's surrounding are unusual, beautiful, and certainly not like anything else, which is the point of travel for me. The views and sunsets were fantastic.

The dinners were good and I especially liked that they served local fish, hare, lamb, etc. and Chilean wine as well. We never went hungry during the activities either! On Xmas day we had a BBQ at a fiord with lamb roasted over a huge fire. I didn't even really like lamb much before this trip, but this was excellent and changed my mind.

Regarding the activities, the evening meetings with the guides to schedule the next day activites always seemed a little disorganized. However, we got to do our first choice every day and the experiences were incredible. We did two different hikes with amazing views of the Horns and the Towers, as well as a horseback ride. The guides were great and very interesting people to talk to. My only advice is to make sure that you are in good physical condition for the activities. The pace on one of the hikes was pretty fast and I was a little under the weather.

I wish we could have stayed a little longer. Most of the activities that we chose were "full day" which can be fairly long given the drive to and from the park. It would have been nice to have some extra down time, as well as more time to explore Puerto Natales.

Overall, the experience was excellent and I would recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed: December 2007, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Seat24A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 May 2008

My husband and I stayed at the Remota a few weeks ago and had a wonderful time. I cannot speak highly enough about this hotel, and I would recommend it to anybody. In planning our trip to Chile, we wanted a place from which to explore Patagonia and the Torres del Paine national park. We didn't know whether we should stay in the park itself, or outside of the park at the Remota. I am so happy that we chose to stay at the Remota.

The hotel itself is stunning. The rooms were immaculate and the beds were very comfortable. There are so many small touches that make the hotel so great - - from the rainfall shower heads to the roaring fire in the lounge. It was a pleasure to be there. Every night we used the spa and sat outside in the jacuzzi - - a great way to relax after a full day of hiking. The food was great. We had big dinners with lots of wine every night and they even managed to make the lunches they packed for us during the day taste good.

The best part of this hotel (and there are a lot to choose from) is the guides and the excursions. Every night you have the chance to meet with the guides to plan out what kind of an excursion you'd like to do the next day. We went horseback riding, kayaking and hiking - all with experienced and knowledgeable guides that spoke good English.

The excursions were extremely well organized and planned. We were never with more than two or three other people and, for our last excursion we were the only two people. We felt very confidant with the skill level of the guides and we saw some amazing sights.

Before the trip we had worried about staying outside the park, not knowing if the trip into the park for excursions would be too long etc. This was not a problem at all. The days we went into the park were great and it didn't feel like we were commuting too long at all. Also, the park is huge, so even if you stay inside the park, you'd still have to travel in order to see different sides of the park. The added bonus with the Remota is that you can see other parts of the area that aren't in the park. One of our hikes was outside of the park and it was fantastic.

Staying at the Remota was one of the best choices we made on our trip. The staff was so friendly and they went out of their way to accommodate us. We have stayed at many quality hotels and the Remota definitely ranks as one of the best.

  • Stayed: April 2008
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2  Thank NYC5c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 April 2008

Having read a couple of extremely negative reviews I was a little concerned about what was in store for us at Remota.
Well I needn't have worried.
From the moment our driver delivered us to the Hotel, where we were personally greeted by the manager, everything was excellent.
Guides and excursions -
The main focus of staying at Remota has to be the excursions. All were very good and the guides superb. We did as much as possible including Torres del paine, trecking to Milodon caves, horse riding, cycling and a boat trip to the Fjords and Glaciers.
I made a point of asking the guides if they were free lancers or worked only for Remota. it turned out that most exclusively work for Remota -and some live in, but at peak times they do hire in other guides. None of the guides I spoke to said they had anything against Remota.
The Hotel -
The achitecture won't be to every ones taste but it is as you see on the website. You won't get any surprises. The style is modern and may seem a little austere to some, but the large windows give a great view of the Ultima Esperanza Fjord.
I had better things to do than analyse the quality of workmanship on the roof etc.
Rooms were spacious enough and some of the furniture fashioned from the local Lenga trees - I've never seen those in Ikea! The spa is good and we were given the key as nobody else was using it on one occasion.

The Food
Glad to say I had no need to walk into Puerto Natales for food!
Very good breakfasts with a fair selection of the usual fruit / cereals and juices (which were fresh). Freshly prepared eggs always available. Dinners and lunches were great - fresh fish usually featured - conger Eel or Hake, plus there was always Lamb or beef. Not great for vegetarians but this is Patagonia!

The Wine
Well I asked for a wine list too, and was told that they don't have one.
So I asked which wines they have. All wine is Cassillero del Diablo. Merlot, Cab, Camenere, Shiraz, Chardonnay, Sauv Blanc.
So I didn't need to spend 3 days asking for the wine list having established exactly what was on offer and got on with enjoying myself.
Service -
Always trying to please. Some of the staff were less experienced than others and I think when larger numbers book into the hotel they take on temporary staff. We were fortunate that only 23 people were in the hotel when we stayed.

Comparisons with Explora
This is a little unfair as Explora is twice the price, but
a Chilean gentleman was staying at the time who had previously been to Explora. He said that they were both great hotels, except that Explora was inside the Park.
He was certainly pleased with Explora though.

Nice touch
On the last day we were supposed to check out at midday but as our plane was leaving late, we had another excursion and then lunch. This was over and above what we were expecting.
The van then took us away at 3PM.

  • Stayed: March 2008, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank CBviajero
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 March 2008

My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Remota. We had the option to book Explora but choose Remota instead, and we were very pleased with our stay. Unlike Explora, there are excursions outside of the park, all over Patagonia, so you get a definite feel for the region and the people. We have traveled many places, and the food was 5-star quality. The wine overflowed the glasses, the staff was very hospitable, and the tour guides were extremely knowledgeable. The hike to the Indian caves is a must. We would HIGHLY recommend this to family and friends.

  • Stayed: March 2008, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank gmp627
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 March 2008

Where to begin - our experience at Remota was nothing short of amazing. My wife and I (both 26) decided to take our vacation to Patagonia for a few reasons - superb food and wine, a feel for the Chilean culture, and Patagonian outdoor experiences such as hiking, horseback riding, Torres del Paine, and seeing icebergs and glaciers up close. All of the above were accomplished and more. To begin, we were met at the Punta Arenas airport by a Remota driver and enjoyed the 2.5hour drive through to Remota. Along the way you will see some guanacos and nandu (chilean version of ostrich). We arrived at 3pm and at first were taken aback by the hotel design, but quickly appreciated it architectural ingenuity - just look at the website pictures. We then ate a fabulous lunch with unlimited wine, and then a guide was willing to take us around to see Puerto Natales since we had been in transit for nearly 24hrs (from LA). We walked around, and got a brief rundown on the history of the town. Next was dinner, and yet again bottomless wine coupled with exquisite food. The wine offered was Casillero del Diablo, 3 of which were red and 2 white. Each dinner you received appetizers which were different every night, a choice between soup or salad, a choice between 5 main dishes - 4 of which are always offered (crab casserole, fresh lamb, steak, pasta dish) and 1 was different each night, like Conger fish for instance. The staff was incredibly courteous, and always available to answer any questions. To briefly sum up the excursions we took, day 1 we arrived and took the city tour. Day 2: hike for 3 hours, picnic lunch with soup, Pisco sours, mate drink, tea/coffee, ham or salmon sandwiches, and cookies for dessert (ALL carried in a backpack by your hiking guide). At the top of the mountian we hiked up, there were horses awating in addition to a real gaucho! His name was David, and we rode his horses on his estancia - nearly 10,000 acres in size! My wife is an avid horseback rider and claims that these were some of the best kept horses she's ever seen. We rode along the Argentinian border and atop the ridge of a mountain with amazing vistas, then down to David's farm. We were able to trot, canter, and gallop once we were on the flatland. Day 3: van ride around Torres del Paine which included 2 hikes, one was 1.5hrs and another was 45min - you see EVERYTHING! Day 4: a boat ride up the fjord to see 2 glaciers and a hike around O'Higgins park - very relaxing. Day 5: a hike in the morning to a well kept secret, the location only known by Remota hiking guides - the cave paintings near the Milodon cave. Truly amazing! From there we hiked to the Milodon cave, the van picked us up and back to Remota for -you guessed it - bottomless wine and amazing food. We had a 2hr break (chosen by my wife and I), until we went on to ride David's horses again. The next day we unfortunately had to depart on our way back to the States. Checkout was amazing, we just turned the key in and I was in shock that I didn't have to pay anything additional, it just didn't add up to me. This really is an all inclusive! We, like many others, had considered staying at Explora. After talking to the guides and guests who've stayed at Explora, I honestly think the experience at Remota is better than Explora's. At Remota, you are not isolated to the park, and can enjoy other activities outside of Torres del Paine. Also, the cost of Remota is approx 50-75% of the cost of Explora. 3 of the 5 days of our stay, our excursions were my wife, myself, and our guide - no others! Please highly consider staying here if you're looking for the things we were.

  • Stayed: March 2008, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank v983ujv
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Remota

Address: Ruta 9 Norte, km 1.5 | Huerto 279, Puerto Natales, Chile
Region: Chile > Magallanes Region > Puerto Natales
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Puerto Natales
#2 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Natales
#2 Business Hotel in Puerto Natales
Price Range: £213 - £279 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Remota 4.5*
Number of rooms: 72
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Remota is one of the most celebrated and awarded Hotels in Chile, where the National Architecture Prize Awarded, German Del Sol, achieved the most breathtaking views of the fjord and glaciers.Normal things like breakfast,is an unforgettable experience.Luminous and inserted in Patagonia's landscape, without any modification, with the best infrastructure, totally different from a classic hotel that impresses visitors and leaves a lasting memory.Remota is more than just a hotel, it allows travellers to have a unique total Patagonia Experience.Remota is an ecological and sustainable hotel, built with high quality materials, almost no motors, no elevators,no television or internet in the rooms, very light, almost transparent, natural ventilation and highly efficient energy use.We support local communities and are strongly linked to social and cultural organisations as well.Remota is a selected property of the prestigious Virtuoso luxury travel network (only 5 operations in Chile) and was choosen by Orvis as an International Endorsed Destination. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Remota Puerto Natales, Chile - Aisen Region
Remota Hotel Puerto Natales

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