A Fast Mover learns to love Slow Travel
Raymonde Wagemaker was a mechanical engineer and a successful executive in the oil & gas industry. In fact Raymonde was so successful that he spent 250 days a year on the road traveling throughout South America to oversee the business units he was responsible for. Eventually after years of travel and deal making he decided he was successful enough and did what many of us can only dream of, he quit his day job and bought a vineyard. It just happened to also have a boutique hotel with two locations attached. Instantly this fast mover learned to love the art of slow travel.
“Our customers are into slow travel.” says a beaming Raymonde as he and his wife Bernadette, a former teacher, show us around their property. “Our guests from the US, Brazil and Canada want to stay in a luxury property on a working vineyard. They want to take the time and taste the grapes.” Raymonde remembers that when he was an executive he wanted nothing more than a few days off to do nothing but relax and indulge. He vowed that one day he would give himself this luxury. And so when the 7 year old hotel came up for sale he bought it. Currently his mini-chain of properties has 2 locations, Valle de Uco which is a country style hotel in the midst of a private 8 hectare Malbec vineyard and Chacras de Coria an urban lifestyle hotel in Mendoza. Combined both properties have just 16 rooms.
The philosophy according to Bernadette is to give guests the most precious luxury of them all, time. “Our customers love wine, they want to visit the wineries in Mendoza and sample the restaurants, but they also want to relax.” And so both properties quite consciously maintain a small, comfortable feel. When we were at the Valle de Unco property it was raining so we missed the view of the Tupungato Volcano and Andes Mountains but Raymonde assured us, “They are splendid, their majestic shape and fresh air combine to make this location relaxing and magical.”
Postales Boutique Wine Hotels’ customers are baby boomers and well travelled executives like Raymonde. “I know these people, I was one of them for years so I know what they need and what they want to enjoy their time off. And so we specialize in giving them peace and quiet and an authentic Argentinean experience. “ It’s interesting that a family from Holland has mastered the art of Argentinean hospitality but they have. Our short stay was just long enough to relax, recharge and reinvigorate the senses before heading out on another long day of shooting.
For more information visit their website, www.postalesarg.com.