Boho hotspots in Uruguay and a new Chilean vineyard

Trendsetting properties from the art-collecting Vik family and the Brazilian Beach House Company

A courtyard at the new hotel-and-villa property Bahia Vik José Ignacio, Uruguay
A courtyard at the new hotel-and-villa property Bahia Vik José Ignacio, Uruguay | Image: Vik Retreats

For beach houses in Trancoso, the Brazilian Beach House Company (www.brazilianbeachhouse.com) has been the go-to agency ever since owner Steven Chew decamped from London to set up shop in Rio in 2007. In Brazil, he has built up a portfolio of 90-odd homes to rent, from private islands off Salvador to film director Walter Salles’ home in Angra dos Reis. Now Chew is riding a new wave with the addition of Uruguay to his books and 30 fully staffed properties. The epicentre is the fishing village of José Ignacio, where his villas (from $12,500 per week) will be competing for the same crowd who chase rooms at Bahia Vik José Ignacio (www.bahiavik.com; from $800), a new hotel-and-villa property from the art-collecting Viks, opening this month. This Norwegian family also owns Playa Vik(www.playavik.com; from $900), a super-modern beach hotel 500m away in the same fishing village-turned-global Boho hotspot. Bahia Vik is less about look-at-me architecture than relaxed natural wood and low-lying structures built into the dunes, with views across the Atlantic Ocean towards Punta del Este (a 19km drive away). The 11 two- and three-bedroom bungalows are set amid the undulating sands and beach grasses, while next door is the Viks’ first standalone restaurant, La Susana (www.lasusana.com). Fashioned from simple rustic woods, it recalls Club 55 in St Tropez, and the menu features the best local fare, from grass-fed Uruguayan beef to piquant ceviche. Meanwhile, over the Andean backbone in Chile, the upcoming Viña Vik (www.vinavik.com; from $1,200), which occupies an 11,000-acre vineyard a two-hour drive south of Santiago, opens next month. For 10 years, the Viks have been working towards creating the best wine in South America; for travellers, April marks the first time to get an early taste of their endeavours while staying at this new 22-room hotel with 360º views of the vineyard in the Millahue Valley or “place of gold” – so named by the indigenous people.

La Susana restaurant, José Ignacio, Uruguay
La Susana restaurant, José Ignacio, Uruguay
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The Red House villa, in Garzón, Uruguay, available through the Brazilian Beach House Company
The Red House villa, in Garzón, Uruguay, available through the Brazilian Beach House Company | Image: Steven Chew
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