Wow! Spring skiing in Chile. Access to the mountain from El Colorado Apart Hotel was fantastic. Really easy to walk off the deck on to the snow and voila!
However, do not fall for the offer of great food or access to the internet. Since my visit I have asked for special dispensation regarding the the poor food and other issues. The Chilean travel agent defended the hotel by saying that "we've never heard that before" and that at each meal options were available for other entrees. Below is a summary of my experience. (Remember the skiing was great!!!)
Options at Dinner: No options were offered. We were simply served three plates, one at a time without offers of any other items.
Quality of food: My group, three persons of different backgrounds, different tastes and different diets did not finish a single plate. The beef tasted like horse meat. Other items tasted foul at best. We laughed at dinner and returned to our rooms to snack on items purchased in the grocery store before coming up the mountain.
Internet: The internet is limited to 5 users at a time. The hotel and restaurant themselves use a minimum of 2 or 3 of those connections themselves, therefore leaving only 2 or so for guests. Hotel staff, if unable to get 1 of the 5 available connection would routinely unplug the wireless router so as to kick everyone off the wireless connection then log on themselves.
Yes one might expect to have intermitent access to the internet if it was so published. But the world does not expect that kind of performance these days regardless of the location. If the features of a hotel say Wireless Internet then it should be available to all. The wireless signal was only available from 8 am to 11 pm. Do I need to point out how ludicrous it is to offer less than 5 connections for only 15 hours per day for an international guest community of 30 or more persons? Each morning at the moment the doors to the restaurant opened there was a queue of persons all attempting to access the internet. One or two of us could get on the others sat in disconnected dispair, polling others in various languages, "Get on?"
Towels: Chilean hotel standards for towels are smallish. So I understand that Chile has standards for towels that are less than those standards from other developed countries. This is not the issue. The issue is that we did not have the Bath sized towels in our room. We had only hand towels. On our last day housekeeping put larger towels (albeit small) in a closet.
I should add that although the hotel/apt provides excellent ski in ski out access to El Colorado, the hotel does not provide drive in drive out access. Access to your car, taxi or other transportation while carrying skis and other suitcases is a 100 meter walk across a ski slope. This is treacherous in street shoes.
I recommend Chile for skiiing and for the fantastic Carmenere red wine. Bring your own food, your own broadband access, and your own towels and you will be skiing in heaven!!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel Ski in-Ski out at the base of El Colorado Farellones, at 45 minutes from Santiago, Chile, 15 and 5 minutes from Valle Nevado and La Parva neighboring ski resorts. Ski rental services on-site with snow gear and accessories. Restaurant with 360 panoramic view to the Andes mountain. ... more less
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