“A luxury eco-estancia in a spectacular nature reserve covering the vast unspoilt wetlands of northeast Argentina”
Douglas is a visionary in many respects: as owner (with his wife Kris) of clothing company North Face, he clearly knows a lot about design. It’s no surprise, then, that his projects in Argentina and Chile share his signature style, with natural materials that sit in harmony, rather than compete, with the environment outside.
The casco - main house - is charming and traditional, built in 1896 in classic Spanish style. A long white building with a typical red zinc roof, surrounded by abundant flowers and palms, it’s been carefully restored to maintain the original structure. Inside are 6 beautifully designed Premium Rooms, (Yacaré, Tuyuyú, Jabirú, Vizcacha, Ipacá and Chajá) leading off a long veranda at the front, with windows overlooking the pool at the back.
There are also 3 quaint cottages in the grounds, 2 are categorised as Premium Rooms (Nandubay and Lapacho) and 1 is a Standard Bungalow (Timbó), the only difference being size. Built in adobe with thatched roofs, these were part of the original farm; they’re just 50m from the main house. The largest, Nandubay, has a sitting area and a kitchenette, plus a veranda (screened against the abundant wildlife) where you can sit out in the evenings and absorb the bird sounds.
All rooms and cottages are similarly styled in harmonious chocolate and cream. Original tile floors have been preserved in checkerboard brown and white or earth-toned sienna and ochre, and walls are adorned with antiquated maps and sepia prints of wildlife. Furniture is made from local wood, either reclaimed and restored or specially created to retain the 1900s style. Bathrooms are old fashioned, with reclaimed sinks and showers or tubs. The overall effect is welcoming, stylish and relaxing, with a touch of the old colonial feel.
It’s strange how being in this natural paradise sharpens the senses and whets the appetite. Fortunately, the food at Rincón del Socorro is a special feature. Almost all of it is organic, and much of it comes from the estancia’s own kitchen garden, which is planted according to strict biodynamic principles. The orchard bursts with lemons, oranges, mandarins, pears, apples, quinces and figs; check out the cherry tomatoes and fresh peas as you chat with the gardeners.
Mealtimes are totally flexible as guests go out early for trips on the water, and if you're on a full-day excursion, you might eat lunch on the reserve. Return at tea time to leaf teas and delicious homemade biscuits, before dinner is served around 8pm.
Menus are impressive - designed to match the best of Buenos Aires' restaurants. The food is simple but exquisite, and there’s always something surprising to excite the palate. The whole menu is carefully balanced to be nutritious and not over-filling. The house speciality is passion fruit ice cream. Vegetarians are gladly catered for, and there’s an excellent wine list, too. Breakfasts feature fresh fruit, regional specialities, and cakes and breads baked on the premises.
The great Argentine tradition of the asado is maintained here in considerable style, too. Every large home in Argentina has its own quincho, a sheltered outdoor space where meat is cooked over wood on a massive grill, and where family and friends congregate to eat and drink. It's part of Argentina’s love of the great outdoors, and Rincón del Socorro’s version is lovelier than most: fully enclosed to keep the mosquitoes out, typically built with a straw roof and local tiles, and surrounded by old lapacho trees. Here, you’ll tuck into home-reared beef, organic salads and superb Argentine wines.
The great thing about Rincón del Socorro is that most activities are included in the price:
Children are warmly welcomed. Hosts Leslie and Valeria have 2 children themselves, and you might see them tearing around on bikes or riding horses as if they were born on them. Children will love exploring the grounds, and your kids will be well looked after, with activities adapted to suit their age and abilities. There's also a games' room.
Children (4-12 years), Teens (over 12)
The Premium Rooms in the main house (Yacaré, Tuyuyú, Jabirú, Vizcacha, Ipacá and Chajá) have an additional single bed or sofabed, and some (Yacaré, Tuyuyú, Chajá and Vizcacha) can accommodate a further bed if needed. Two of the rooms (Ipacá and Vizcacha) are interconnecting, so that you can use the space for the whole family.
Baby cots are available on request.
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking