Hacienda los Lingues
Hacienda Los Lingues (Panamericana Sur, Km 124; Av. Providencia 1100, Torre C de Tajamar, Oficina 205, Providencia, Santiago, tel. 02/2352458, fax 02/2357604, www.loslingues.cl, US$180–228 s or d) is about 20 kilometers north of San Fernando and 32 kilometers south of Rancagua, a short distance east of the Panamericana by a well-marked gravel road; rates do not include breakfast or any other meals, but meal packages are available.
Short of time travel, the easiest way to grasp the sum and substance of life on a colonial hacienda—at least from the perspective of a latifundista—is to visit or, preferably, spend a night or more at Hacienda Los Lingues. Founded in the 16th century, though the present buildings date from the 17th, it’s the best-preserved unit of its kind in the area, and perhaps the best in the country. It’s also the only Chilean affiliate of the international Relais & Chateaux luxury accommodations group, and one of few on the entire continent.
Decorated almost exclusively with antiques, Los Lingues’s 19 rooms retain colonial style but also have contemporary comforts such as private baths—but not TV. Set among sprawling but manicured gardens, surrounded by a working farm, it also has a colonial chapel, a rodeo ring, and breeding stables. It took years for Germán Claro Lyon, who manages the resort, to convince his parents to open it to tourists.
In addition to accommodations, Los Lingues offers activities such as tennis and swimming, hiking, mountain biking, riding, and fly-fishing. Those who can’t afford the luxury accommodations can book a day tour (US$55) that includes a tour of the main house, lunch (but not wine), pool access, and a rodeo at the medialuna (rodeo ring). Most of the grounds, though, are closed to everyone except hotel guests.
North–south buses can drop you at the junction, where it’s possible to find a cab to the hacienda. Los Lingues also provides round-trip transportation from Santiago or from the international airport, but this would be very expensive for individuals or couples.
© Wayne Bernhardson from Moon Chile, 2nd edition