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November 20, 2007

Eco-Luxe Comes to Easter Island

Be a pampered explorer at Polynesia's new wilderness lodge.

You think Chile, you think three things: Patagonia, the Atacama and Easter Island. Until now, explora hotels had conquered but two of Chile’s spectacular natural wonders. But on December 15, the country’s ultra-luxe trailblazers finally move offshore to claim their third — and most dramatic — wilderness lodge yet: La Posada de Mike Rapu. An isolated speck in the middle of the Pacific, 2,300 miles off the Chilean coast, Easter Island stands among the world’s most mythical destinations. Once a Polynesian paradise and later a site of ecological destruction and warfare, the isolated atoll has been dubbed the “navel of the world.”

Now it will be home to its first five-star eco retreat — or as explora likes to brazenly claim: “South America’s first green hotel.” Rising from the hillside, La Posada’s 30 eco-fabulous rooms were built on strict ecological guidelines, using only local materials to mirror the volcanic landscape. Inside you can expect a glass-walled kitchen, bespoke Raulí Wood furniture and a swimming pool. Outside, you can hike hidden caves and craters, stroll secret beaches and explore the 900-plus mystifying Moai statues. Just 10 minutes from the island’s only village, La Posada is still a five-hour flight from Santiago. Yet still the hotel — or “revolutionary travel experience,” as they prefer to be known as — say they’re fully booked through March 2008.

read more: 02. Sleep | secluded | 04. Eco | 07. Beach | 08. Journey | 09. Active |