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Review of Espejo de Luna

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Espejo de Luna
Reviewed 21 February 2014 via mobile

An Eco-tourism concept with a farm to table concept near the south-eastern end of Chiloe. Just four Eco friendly cabanas make up this gem where the service is five star while preserving the feeling that you are secluded from the world. Several walking paths, lighted at night, lead down to the private beach, the outdoor grilling area. Sheep and ducks walk about the property adding to the rustic feeling of the experience. A lovely and intimate restaurant, LEV, delights with breakfast, lunch and dinner options from locally sourced seafood and white meat options (no red meat here!). Esteban and Felipe, ever so attentive, delightful, funny and knowledgable hosts. If you have the time, take a 2.5 hour tour around the archipelagos on- board the KAWESQAR (www.quilun.cl) and it's charming and well informed captain, Gorge, for a cozy boat ride that offers a ridiculously fresh shellfish and wine lunch while taking you to view Patagonian penguins, seals and dolphins. ESPEJO DE LUNA (mirror of the moon) is a magical place where one can disconnect from the insanity and reconnect with nature.

Stayed: February 2014
Thank Alwxa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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3 - 9 of 44 reviews

Reviewed 15 March 2013 via mobile

This place is definitely out of every chart and any rating system. It's a lifetime experience . The food, the team, architectural design of the rooms , service - all above any expectations!
Can't wait to be back.
Ilan K

  • Stayed: March 2013
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1  Thank Ilanke
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 March 2013

Wow no words can describe what an amazing place it is! They make you smile all day long, never saw such service. They really do care about you all the way. The food was also wonderful and the staff were incredible . Thanks so much

  • Stayed: February 2013
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Thank Romy K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 March 2013

Elizebeth and the team were phenominal. You couldnt ask for better treatment! They have transportation assistance. This place has been designed to relax and exceed all expectations. They have pet sheeps that graze the land right in front of your door step. as well as a duck pond and a sweet white rabbit. There is a small forest of a native tree called rajanes there which is something beautiful to see. The view to the ocean at night has a 30 min window where the moon reflects upon the ocean with the most unusual colors. I love this place and i will be back! The food was amazing...ceviche, salmon fillets, sushi, amazing breakfasts...food is the LAST thing your going to have to worry about if you stay there, and they are very generous with it. Sleeping quarters were cleaned like 3 times a day. they leave candies and water next to to the bed. I stayed for a week straight and felt like a king,,,,thank you for a great experience....

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Jonathan L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 January 2012

This place was a great surprise. Their website doesnt even begin to show how great this place is, so dont base your opinion on that. I had been a little disappointed with Chiloe when I arrived, as I had come here wanting to see wildlife, traditional ways of life, and experience a tranquility with the ocean. Places like Castro didnt leave me very excited about the island, they just seemed like any other city in any other place.
Then I arrived at this hotel, and THIS was the Chiloe I had wanted to see! The lodging is simple but beautiful. The cabanas are spacious, and the staff even lights the woodstove for you at night. Privacy couldnt be better - you will barely see anyone else the entire time that you are there, the way they have the lodging situated. You feel like you have stretches of forest and beach all to yourself - which basically you do!
What sets this place apart is the personalized service. You have staff waiting on you hand and foot, without ever being imposing or intrusive. The food is top notch, and they make a huge effort to get everything exactly how you want it. They treat you as a special guest and individual - you are not just one more person staying there. You will leave feeling like friends with the restaurant staff, the manager, everyone.
For me, this was a highlight of my Chiloe trip, and an unexpected surprise. It's a little out of the way, but easily accessible by bus. And the fact that it is out of the way makes it so that it is so tranquil! I wouldnt have it any other way. If you want to unwind and relax, this is the place,
Make sure to book a boating trip with them to some of the smaller islands - its a great way to see traditional Chilote culture, and a super relaxing way to spend the day. You wont regret it.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled on business
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1  Thank Cathy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 May 2009

Driving through the green, rolling hills of Chiloé, the nostalgic image of a large, wooden ship washed ashore emerges from the picturesque landscape. In reality it is Lef, the restaurant come bar, come reception centre of Espejo de Luna. Since it opened last December, Espejo de Luna has offered a unique blend of exclusive accommodation, gastronomy, scenic views and tranquillity.

Lef is the central building at the entrance of Espejo de Luna and is a two storey restaurant and reception centre, hand built in timber in the form of a shipwreck. Entering the reception you see the beams that form the hull of the boat rising as roof supports, allowing you to appreciate the fine craftsmanship and take in the subtle fragrance of Cyprus pine. Lef means fast in madpudugun, the language of the Huilliche, one of the indigenous peoples of Chiloé (pronounced chee-loh-WAY) that still exist today. The name and shape of building were inspired by the seafaring tradition of this Chilean isle, which dates back to the first indigenous inhabitants of the island, the Chonos, and a tradition that is still alive today.

The unique architecture of Lef does not seem out of place in Chiloé, one of the largest islands in the South American continent located in the south of Chile and famous for its wooden architecture, including 16 World Heritage churches. Chiloé is known for its mystic sites, missionaries and churches, country towns, fishing and ship building. Castro, its capital, is home to one of the most recognised images of Chiloé, the palafitos, a series of wooden huts built waveringly on stilts that perch over the shore to make better use of the coastal access during the peak of the timber exploitation at the end of the 19th Century. Castro is also home to San Francisco Cathedral, a beautiful church with a spectacular interior complete with timber domes and arches. Espejo de Luna lies 55 kilometres south of Castro and on the road from Chonchi to the small fishing town of Queilen. Chonchi is one of the most attractive towns in Chiloé which has preserved many of the traditional timber buildings built during the time of the timber baron, Ciriaco Alvarez, who built his empire by exploiting the island native Cyprus forests.

Lef features a first class, international restaurant, which utilizes and is inspired by the rich and abundant local produce, including superb fish and seafood, native potatoes, manjar (a rich caramel fudge similar to dulce de leche), murtas , a native berry, and pisco sours, a citrus based aperitif made with Pisco, the national spirit. The service is probably friendlier than you would find in a Michelin star restaurant for example, but a feature the South of Chile is famous for. Combining award winning Chilean wines, an inspired menu and the warm service with pleasant views over the 3 hectare site, the dining experience at Lef is rarely matched in South America.

Espejo de Luna boasts a lodge, Ruka Kimun, with five ample double suites with private bath and a shared lounge with awe inspiring views over the Corcovado Gulf towards the Chaiten Volcano, which infamously came to life again in early 2008. There are another three private, luxury cabins; the Ruka Ayun, or lovers’ cabin, the Ruka Weche, or cabin for young people, and the Ruka Wingkul, or family cabin. Each cabin has been designed individually to be in keeping with the surroundings, constructed by hand and is positioned just far enough from the others to provide privacy and a sense of seclusion.

Through a pretty wood of native trees, which were preserved during the construction of the cabins, there is a look out which sits amongst the tree tops, again offering a striking panorama. On a clear night, when the moon is reflected perfectly in the still waters of the Gulf, it is here that you can see where Espejo de Luna, which means mirror of the moon, gets its name. While I was there on Valentine’s Day this year another guest made the most of the romantic setting by proposing at the look out, with candlelight, rose petals and a bottle of champagne prearranged with the staff. We guessed the answer was a ‘yes’ when the two happily left the look out heading back to the lovers’ cabin, the bottle of champagne in hand. After such effort, you would hope so.

Further below, heading to the beach there is a colossal barbeque, although the word barbeque hardly does it justice. The hotplate is a sizable metre wide and some three meters long. The “quincho” also has a coal fireplace in the centre, with a grill to lower over the flames. The guests can use the barbeque themselves or the chef can arrange to demonstrate how to make a “curanto”, a local dish that is a mix of fresh local fish, seafood, meats and potatoes traditionally cooked together in the open air inside the giant nalca leaves.

Just next to the quincho is the access to the beach. It’s not a postcard-style Caribbean beach, but one of the rough, stormy beaches of the south of Chile, with volcanic sands and views out of the clear waters towards the mainland. It’s a beach with the kind of brutal beauty which inspired Pablo Neruda’s, one of Chile’s Noble prize winning poets, Playa del Sur (Beach of the South). With luck, guests might see whales or dolphins passing, but more often local bird life, passing fishing boats or kayakers taking advantage of the still waters to see more of the area.

While such first rate accommodation and service may seem like a rare find for any visitor to South America, Espejo de Luna’s most unusual feature is that the grounds, and many of the rooms, are wheel chair accessible. Reno explains that while constructing the complex, one of his employees, and a good friend of his, was struck by a chance illness which left him bed ridden for weeks and later confined to a wheel chair. “When he was finally able to come and see the progress we had made,” he explained, “it struck me that he could not enjoy this amazing place. It made me think, and changed the whole focus of the project.” With accessible ramps between the main buildings, two especially designed accessible suites and a sturdy, wheel chair accessible elevator that takes guests down to the beach access, the complex is almost unprecedented in Chile. Espejo de Luna boasts that they offer a chance to enjoy nature at its finest to all their guests, regardless of their physical limitations. Bringing together accessibility, first class accommodation and gastronomy rich in local produce in such a unique corner of the world, makes Espejo de Luna well worth a visit.

Travel information
From Castro, the regional capital of Chiloé, Espejo de Luna is some 55 km drive south past Chonchi on the road to the town of Queilen, just past the turn of to the town of Aituy.

3  Thank Tessbea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 January 2017
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  • Stayed: January 2017, travelled with family
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Thank SamantaA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Espejo de Luna

Address: Route from Chonchi to Quelen | KM 35, Quelen, Isla Chiloe, Chile
Region: Chile > Los Lagos Region > Isla Chiloe
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #32 of 163 Speciality Lodging in Isla Chiloe
Price Range: £177 - £464 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Espejo de Luna 3*
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Espejo de Luna Lodge, a living legend in the heart of Chilean Patagonia, Chiloé.Mystic as the place it is located; Espejo de Luna is a unique lodge, a magical mixture of amazing architecture in perfect harmony and commitment to nature, outstanding gastronomy and exclusive service with attention to detail. Eco tourism premium quality.A privileged experience in an amazing environment. Something that could change your life. Perhaps a mermaid song would change it?… ... more   less 
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