Lighting: Paulina Sir
Engineer: Alfonso Larraín
Furnishing: Francesca Porzio, Macarena Valdés
Landscape: Cecilia Rencoret
Client: Caja de Compensación Los Andes
Text description provided by the architects. The hotel for the Caja de Compensación Los Andes in Hornitos locates on a plateau over a promontory 32 meters above sea level in the Atacama Desert, North of Chile. As this is a privileged and immaculate place, the main challenge was to intervene trying to be the less invasive possible.
Therefore, we opted for a semi-buried architectural layout carried out horizontally with a larger volume containing the hotel, and smaller volumes scattered on the land (cabins), in order to cover the immediate area and join the vastness of the desert.Every volume has been made of reinforced concrete pigmented with the colors of the desert intensifying the intention of mimesis to try to pass unnoticed.
The hotel has 5800 m2 and 38 rooms, other 36 in 18 cabins, an outdoor swimming pool, an indoor heated-swimming pool, auditorium, meeting rooms, dining rooms, lounges, gyms, etc.
The strong sunshine, proper from the Atacama Desert, is controlled by a sequence of intermediate spaces that allow a gradual transfer from the protected places to the ones exposed to the sun. Common circulations and spaces of the hotel are mostly open, generating air currents that allow constant air circulation. The building protects itself from the sun setting with eaves and lattices.
The roof, treated as a relaxation place, a terrace to stay and watch the sea and the distant landscape, is a great deck creating under itself an air chamber that allows to ventilate the roof and keep it isolated from the direct sunshine affecting the adequate air conditioning in the internal spaces of the hotel. The complex is provided with water directly from the sea having inside the facilities a salt water treatment plant, which cleans water to be used and deposits remaining salts into an indoor pool next to the hotel access.