Hidden amid the dense wilderness of Mashpi Reserve at the point where Ecuador’s montane rainforest and cloud forest meet, this ultra-luxury lodge is certainly an impressive feat. The intensity and diversity of flora and fauna here are Mashpi’s greatest draw, but the lodge itself is quite remarkable, with striking contemporary design that distinguishes the hotel for its beauty as much as its sensitivity to the environment. Eco credentials are top notch here, and this is reflected through every aspect of the stay, from the use of native ingredients in the restaurant’s cuisine to the introduction you’re given to this verdant forest and its resident wildlife.
Marc Bery, operations manager, email@example.com, +59 324 004 100
Size 400 sq ft
Nightly rate $1,650
The three Yaku Suites are the biggest guestrooms at the lodge, with floor-to-ceiling windows on each outward-facing side, making the space seem even larger while drawing in daylight. In contrast to the wilderness beyond these panes of glass, the interiors exude tranquility through modern, minimalist design, with furnishings crafted from natural materials and a neutral color scheme. The large double-basin bathrooms feature Philippe Starck-designed bathtubs, which are positioned to make the most of the rainforest views.
Nature is so often proven to enhance our wellbeing, so it seems fitting that the spa here should provide a sanctuary for the body and mind, as it replicates the tranquility seen throughout the rest of the hotel. Beauty and body treatments here use Ecuadorian ingredients such as cacao, and are tailored to suit your needs. To connect with the surroundings, join a meditation or yoga session in a clearing on the lodge’s grounds or indulge in an open-air spa therapy.
Signature treatment The Geotherapy massage balances the body’s energy points and channels with hot stones and natural essential oils.
Within the immense two-story-high dining room of Mashpi Lodge, the gastronomic experience is designed to enhance each guest’s time in this unique wilderness. Taking ingredients from the coast and mountains this region lies between, and native produce from the forest, the chefs create refined versions of classic plates in Ecuadorian cuisine; this combination of contemporary cooking and respect for Ecuador’s heritage is what defines the lodge’s culinary identity. Expect dishes such as red seared tuna in a broth that’s infused with local spices and served with the native vegetable manioc. Chilean and Argentinean wines are fittingly dominant here, with nature-inspired cocktails shaken up in the Explorer’s Bar.
Under the expert guidance of the lodge’s expedition leaders and naturalist guides, guests are led on exploratory excursions of the forest. Hike through tropical rainforest to the reserve’s tumbling waterfalls, navigate the forest canopy and cross a dramatic gorge by Sky Bike, and photograph the colorful birdlife at the Hummingbird Garden. With a network of trails and unlimited insight into the wildlife here, opportunities abound to uncover this great wilderness.