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As summer dwindles in the Northern Hemisphere, it is time to set your sights south for that essential dose of mid-winter serotonin. Can you imagine anything better, as the cold, wet weather stretches on interminably, than heading down to South America for 10 days of perfect seclusion in their glorious southern summer sun? Well neither could we, so we have searched the hidden corners of Latin America and come up with the top 5 spots to slip away to for ultimate escapism.

 1. Brazil, Ilha do Pico – They do not come more perfect than this when it comes to escaping the crush of the city and the daily grind. This beautiful villa, complete with personal cook, located on your own private island is the pure definition of seclusion. While colleagues sit at their desks, you could be exploring the jungle paths that lead from the villa to the beautiful viewpoints, or lounging on the golden sand of your private beach. And if all that natural beauty and serenity gets too much, your private speedboat will be waiting to whisk you away to the beautiful colonial town of Paraty.  You are in Brazil after all…

2. Columbia, S/Y Captiva – Whether you are a wizened sea-dog or not, the 80ft S/Y Captiva yacht is a great way to sit back and relax on this beautiful cruise from Columbia to Panama through the spectacular San Blas islands. With an onboard diving instructor and cocktail waiter to boot, you will not be left wanting on this sail of a lifetime. Can you imagine watching the sun go down over a tropical island, cocktail in hand, relaxing in your on-deck Jacuzzi, while those back in Europe trudge home through the drizzle? Well so can we and that is why this makes it firmly into our top 5.

3. Chile, Quincho Country Home – This incredible estancia in the Chilean Lake district, renowned for its lush forest, lakes, waterfalls and crystalline rivers, is the best place to experience natural beauty in its purest form. Whether you are happier enjoying the splendour from horseback or 4×4, by foot or by raft or from behind a glass of Chilean Sauvignon Blanc, nothing is too much trouble for the staff who will personalise everything according to your wishes.

4. Uruguay, Hotel Garzon – This fantastic hotel, hidden away in the sleepy hamlet of Garzon, is one for the foodies amongst you. Owned by the famous Argentine Chef Francis Mallman, the restaurant produces one of the finest menus in Uruguay and, with a wine list to match and all food and drinks included in the price of the room you will have very little reason to leave. Spend your days exploring the true beauty of the Uruguayan countryside by foot or on horseback with a local guide, and your evenings by the pool, cocktail in hand, perusing the evening’s gastronomic offerings (we would go for the whole roast suckling pig). It certainly beats whipping up a Waitrose Wednesday supper in SW 6.

5. Argentina, Cavas Wine Lodge – Surrounded by vines, with a private pool and roof-top terrace to watch the sunset from, glass of wine in hand, each private lodge is the picture of the wine-lovers dream. With the award winning Malbec and Torrontes vines quite literally on your doorstep, you can not go wrong here if you are looking to taste the best. With an outstanding wine cellar to peruse for your evening’s bottle you are in the good hands of the sommelier who will tailor a wine to suit your wants and needs. But drinking wine is not the only thing you will be doing here, the spa also offers a “Malbec Scrub”!

So beat those winter blues and come and kick it South American style and experience pure relaxation in every form. Contact Dehouche and we will plan your ultimate escape.

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