Editor’s note:Soon after we said this was an odd place for a Four Seasons, it suddenly wasn’t anymore. This is now the Carmelo Resort & Spa by Hyatt. Not much else has changed, though time will tell if the service level can keep up.
You usually find a Four Seasons hotel or resort in a well-known area you’ve seen splashed across travel magazine covers. They’re in cities like Paris, Dubai, Bangkok, and Mexico City. Or on perfect beaches in Nevis, Seychelles, Mauritius, or Punta Mita.
For now there are only three Four Seasons hotels in South America though and one of them is in a place you’ve probably never heard of: Carmelo. One of our correspondents was just there recently, after cruising across the Reio de la Plata from Buenos Aires, and so we’ve got an updated review and some new photos.
Carmelo is not a big city nor a beach resort area. This country resort is often referred to as “laid-back” or “casual” compared to others in the chain and it’s more of a place for the wealthy locals of the region to recharge than a destination for people flying from a long distance. Those who do come are not trying to join a glamorous scene since “there are definitely more cattle in Carmelo than there are paparazzi.” Oddly though it’s all done up Balinese style, so it does feel quite exotic in a displaced kind of way.
With the Four Seasons name attached you can be sure to experience a well-trained staff ready to treat everyone like a VIP, well-designed plush rooms, and superb maintenance. Just because it’s in the countryside doesn’t mean there’s no much to do either.
While it would be easy to spend long, lazy days lounging on the cushioned window seats with a good book borrowed from the hotel library, or soaking in the large bathtub with a glass of local Tannat, the resort offers what seems to be a never–ending list of enticing activities both on and off the hotel property.
There’s a full 18-hole golf course, putting green, two tennis courts, two large swimming pools (indoor and outdoor), a huge gym with yoga classes, and a horse stable.
There are only 44 units here total, so this is not some huge mega-resort filled with conventioneers. It works well for a variety of guest types though, from romantic couples to large extended families.
See our new detailed review of Four Seasons Carmelo in Uruguay.
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