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“Cooking area needs improve, service was great!”

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Chileno - Refugio & Camping
Reviewed 10 November 2013

Had a mixed stay, generally everything was ok. The area to cook for the campers is just really not very nice, opposite the toilets and a bit dark. The tents need to be put on a wooden platform. There was not enough opportunities to fix your tent as the hooks wouldn't work some people used stones. But he Refugio itself was really nice and cosy. Especially the service was great. One of the Refugio guys stefano helped me a lot when somebody else took my shoes by mistake. He organised for my stuff to be arranged and gave me his shoes so I could continue my trip. Thanks for that. It changed my entire trip.

  • Stayed: November 2013
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
Thank Arndti
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FantasticoSur T, Gerente at Chileno - Refugio & Camping, responded to this reviewResponded 11 November 2013

Thanks for your comment,
We are glad to know that you were happy with the service at El Chileno, about you suggestions we have already sent it to operations so we can improve the platform hooks, and will work to improve the cooking area.
Regards!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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88 - 94 of 260 reviews

Reviewed 13 April 2013

The location of this Refugio adds to its attraction. It is conveniently located en route to the Base of the Torres hike, which in my opinion is one of the highlights of the park - a must see!

Operated by Fantástico Sur, prepare yourself for high prices on extras. The meal offering here was above average compared to their other refugios. Small and intimate, this refugio makes for a very intimate stay.

The bedrooms appear neater and better maintained even though there are also about 10 bunk beds per room. The bathroom facilities are OK, as to be expected from an establishment that handles the traffic it does.

Plan your time to either do a morning or afternoon trek to the base of the Torres. The refugio is conveniently located for this purpose and they will even store your luggage for you. I would certainly recommend a stay here

Room Tip: Try and arrive early to ask for a bunk bed at the bottom of the pile! A lot easier to move around! I...
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  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with family
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1  Thank Ahlers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 March 2013

Considering the cheapest bed costs USD40 this place is a bit of a shocker. I´m sorry to report that all it gets you is dirty bedding, which in all likelihood you will have shared with a few former guests...and their fleas, broken taps and access to a store which curiously retails condoms and deodrant. The staff are so unwelcoming, unhelpful, lazy and unfriendly it is actually quite entertaining to watch. Ironically there are a number of notices encouraging guests to keep things tidy, I guess it´s deemed sufficient as the staff are visibly just bumming around.
As a bonus, you are likely to leave with a few very itchy flea bites. 20 or so...to be precise. So if this is your thing..go ahead.
Such a shame as the refugio is located in a beautiful spot. But if you can, stay at Los Torres. This may take away from an otherwise mindblowingly beautiful trek. And it´s not worth it.

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank EBPTravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 March 2013

I was totally underwhelmed by this hostel. The only person who seemed to be doing any work was the chef. The bedrooms and bathrooms were dirty (my girlfriend carried home a number of unwelcome fleas which bit me the following night). Instead of sitting around playing cards, the staff could have been cleaning the rooms and the windows and welcoming guests. The shops was a joke (selling condoms deodorant where it should be selling biscuits and pasta for travellers). Such a great location, such poor value for money. Reminded me of communist Russia. FantasticoSur needs a change of management. Bad example of a monopoly. They actually make alot of money from renting beds. Time to re-invest some of that into the lodge.

Room Tip: If you rent a bed ask for clean sheets and spray your bed with insect repellent.
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  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank DublinmanDublin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 January 2013

Agree with Lauren B whose review was very well written and corresponded with our experiences at El Chileno. We had two nights there, 9 of us in total and we all thoroughly enjoyed our stay. Yes, it is a mountain lodge in a very beautiful location, only accessible by foot/horseback so there are limitations. However we were there over NYE and they were still able to put on a fantastic spread of food going to alot of in the process. The food was good though serves were small for the big eaters in our group.

Our only complaint was the state of the toilets in the morning - it would be good if the staff could check them at some time in the night for toilet paper. Would also help if guests read the signs and put toilet paper in the rubbish bins. Sounds yuk but makes for usable toilets. And on that point, bigger rubbish bins in the toilets would be a vast improvement.

We found the staff to be generally very good. The lodge was busy and they were working hard to accommodate everyones requests. I wish I was back there now.

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with family
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Thank milla66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 January 2013

This is a fantastic place and the hikes is wonderful. But, when we arived here the personal didn't seemed to care about anything. We thought we arrived at a bad time but this feeling and behavior endured our whole stay. Not even a hello or goodbye when we arrived or left for hikes. My advises is to camp or choose other Refugio.

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Mathias A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 January 2013

Look at a map for God's sake!... For where we were I can't imagine asking for better food, lodging or service. Think about how the food and staff got there before you complain.

We arrived in Torres del Paine in late afternoon/early evening, got dropped at the Hotel Las Torres, and hit the trail for Ref. Chileno. Folks at Ref Torres Central said it would be less than 2 hours, as did the trail map. We aren't hikers (mtn biking and running are are normal activities) so between stopping to adjust packs, pull off clothing to accommodate the unseasonably warm weather (50F), and learning how to read the footing to protect a previously injured knee, it took us nearly 3 hours. It was very exciting to see the Refugio situated down along the river.

We arrived at about 9pm (with dinner only running till 9:30). I'm sure if it was cold we'd appreciate the blasting wood stove, but I stood in my socks (leave your dirty boots at the door) with sweat pouring down my back while waiting to check-in. There was only one person at the desk and he was handling orders for wine/beer, check-in and questions. So expect to be patient. We had prior reservations for bunks and full meals and had to produce our voucher and passports to check-in. In return you'll get more vouchers which must be turned in to get your meals. A ridiculously paper-laden system that I never quite got good at!

But, anyway... our room at this Refugio (aka hostel) held 4 bunk beds (2 with 2 bunks, 2 with 3). As the late-comers, we got the tippy top bunks. Someone had piled their stuff on one of our bunks, so after verifying our assigned bunks with the staff, we just moved it to a neat pile on the floor. (the owner later whined about it, but tough luck!)

It was a precarious climb, and warm up there, but actually offered lots of ventilation, areas to strap your gear to the wall beams, and privacy (no one can see you up there), so we preferred top bunks. Full board gets you a super thick down sleeping bag and pillow. It got cool enough at night to sleep under the bag, not in it, but it would be great for cold nights. We changed into tevas, got our bedtime toiletries and earplugs out, and took our headlamps to dinner so we could sneak in later without disturbing early sleepers.

This was the first week of January and everything was booked solid, but we didn't have any problems getting seated for dinner (available from 7:30-9:30). Meals are served at wooden tables which had place settings and serve-yourself water. Staff didn't stop to chat, just dropped courses and continued... As you finished, empty dishes were replaced with the next course. So, I don't understand people complaining about poor service. It seemed appropriate for the situation.

Dinner (same basic idea at every Refugio: soup, starch with meat, dessert) was soup, a huge pile of rice-based stuffing, a full chicken breast and chocolate pudding. I found it tasty and very filling. Water is provided. We bought a box of wine (about 4 glasses worth) for US$10.

Breakfast (same at every Refugio): eggs, cereal/milk, juice, bread/butter/jam, instant coffee.

Box Lunch (same at every Refugio): a dense sandwich (usually cheese and ham, once it was tuna salad) on rectangular panini-type bread, 500ml bottle of water, granola bar or trail mix, a chocolate bar, a piece of fruit. Not very exciting, but calorie dense and filling. (we kept accumulating uneaten food and donating it to hungry hikers at the next refugio)

Bathrooms were clean and functional. Plenty of hot shower water (though I didn't linger long). Soap, shampoo and towels were not provided.

This refugio did not have lockers and storage space was very tight. We didn't worry much about security... we kept cameras and phones out of sight (way up top!), and figured no one would want to steal our dirty gear cause they'd have to carry it out. Bring a cable and lock if you want to attach stuff to a beam.

If you're expecting a hotel for your money, you'll be very disappointed! It's an expensive hostel because everything has to be trekked in. Your staff is a bunch of backpacking teens so don't expect concierge service. You will get a warm, cozy place to sleep, filling meals, and a place to get clean. If you want something fancy, stay somewhere else.

Bring your own: shampoo, ultra-light towel, headlamp and earplugs!

Room Tip: top bunks are hard to get into, but very private and offer room to secure your stuff
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Lauren B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Chileno - Refugio & Camping

Address: Torres del Paine | Reserva Cerro Paine, Torres del Paine National Park 610000, Chile
Phone Number:
Region: Chile > Magallanes Region > Torres del Paine National Park
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 18 Speciality Lodging in Torres del Paine National Park
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Refugio El Chileno is located on the way to "Mirador Base Torres" a "must" in Torres del Paine, it is 2 hour from Las Torres sector. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Chileno - Refugio & Camping Torres Del Paine National Park, Aisen Region, Chile

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