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Nestled amidst the breathtaking landscapes of the Peruvian Sacred Valley, Las Qolqas Eco Resort beckons travellers with a harmonious blend of luxury and sustainability. This hidden gem promises an immersive experience, seamlessly integrating modern comfort with a commitment to eco-friendly practices.
From its captivating surroundings to the thoughtfully designed accommodations, Las Qolqas invites guests to indulge in a tranquil escape while leaving a minimal environmental footprint. And I was more than happy to make this my home after five days on the Salkantay trail to Machu Pichu.
Read about my phenomenal experience at Las Qolqas Eco Resort in Ollantaytambo, Peru!
About Las Qolqas Eco Resort
Location of Las Qolqas
Las Qolqas, ideally located near Ollantaytambo Archaeological Park, provides a gateway to the rich heritage of the Sacred Valley. A scenic 1.5 hour journey from Cusco, it offers a perfect blend of history and natural splendour.
How it began
Founded by Herman van den Wall Bake, Las Qolqas is a testament to his multicultural roots—born to a Peruvian mother and a German/Dutch father. His childhood visits to the Sacred Valley inspired the resort’s inception in 2020. The project came after a career in investment banking, land was purchased ready to build a purposeful resort and give back to the community he fell in love with.
Carlos Gonzalez, a seasoned innovator in luxury sustainable tourism in Peru, now serves as the Executive Director, bringing his expertise to Las Qolqas. Together, their shared dedication to sustainability, culture, and the environment propels the resort to become a must-visit destination in the Sacred Valley.
Arrival at Las Qolqas
Transportation to and from Las Qolqas
Arriving from Aguas Calientes on Peru Rail, Las Qolqas efficiently arranged for a driver to pick us up in Ollantaytambo train station, ensuring a seamless transition to the resort.
Complimentary shuttle buses operate between Los Qolqas and Ollantaytambo town multiple times daily, providing convenient transportation to and from the train station for Machu Picchu.
Las Qolqas Eco Resort extended a heartfelt welcome, ensuring our stay started on a high note. The warm greeting includes a bespoke touch – a natural strawberry pisco punch that delights the senses, setting the stage for a memorable experience.
Eco-design meets comfort at Las Qolqas
Las Qolqas Eco Resort exemplifies sustainable elegance with its eco-friendly design, inspired by the breathtaking landscapes of Ollytaytambo. Immerse yourself in a sanctuary where architecture and nature coalesce, ensuring a luxurious yet environmentally conscious retreat.
Luxury Safari-like Tents
My stay at Las Qolqas’ luxury safari-like tents was a lavish yet homely escape. With prior communication, the beds were prepared in a twin arrangement. The mattress was heavenly with a plush duvet and pillows for a restful sleep.
Positioned towards large open windows, the beds facilitate a delightful morning routine of unveiling the blinds, and then returning to bed to relish the enchanting surroundings of blooming flowers—why can’t every day be like this?
The top-quality bathroom and wet room shower exuded opulence, complemented by atmospheric low-lighting, refillable organic toiletries, a hairdryer, and soft towels. The rainfall shower was the perfect mix of warmth and pressure, it was hard to get out, believe me!
The rooms were supplied with an electric heater and woodstove, as well as a mini-bar fridge, safety box, and a llama blanket for extra warmth.
Each luxury tent is named after flora planted in the gardens, and the outside private deck, adorned with chairs, offers a serene retreat, to sit back and take in the sights and sounds.
Sleek Design of the Bar & Dining Area
Behind the natural wood bar at Las Qolqas, a focal point captures a scene of a Peruvian man wearing a distinctive large-nose mask, joyously celebrating in homage to La Virgen del Carmen in Paucartambo.
The seating area in the main space of the bar has cushions with traditional woven Pachamama patterns commonly seen on indigenous women’s scarves and skirts.
Entering the dining area reveals a luminous space, encircled by windows that allow an abundance of natural light to cascade in. Around the perimeter, shelves host seedlings thriving in greenhouse-style design, fostering an environment conducive to their healthy growth before planting the vegetable garden.
The contemporary mural at the kitchen entrance holds profound traditional significance, portraying revered elements like potatoes, Mother Earth, and constellations cherished by the Incas.
Food and drink at Las Qolqas
Retreating at Las Qolqas Eco Resort is a myriad of reasons, with the exceptional food and drink experience rightfully claiming its place at the top of the list.
All organic, seasonal, and locally sourced produce? Count me in!
Las Qolqas’ restaurant, aptly named “Pututu,” honours the Inca tradition of using a conch to call upon the sacred mountains (Apus) and deities. In every nuance of the Las Qolqas experience, a profound tribute is paid to its culturally rich origins, ensuring an authentic journey for every guest.
Breakfast at Las Qolqas is an indulgent sit-down experience featuring coffee, natural juice, fresh fruit, and yogurt. Next up, you can select from a personalised breakfast menu with the option of eggs cooked to your liking or delicious pancakes, ensuring a delightful start to your day.
Lunch + Dinner
At Pututu restaurant, guests can choose from a standard menu or the daily changing menu, announced in Spanish and English on the chalkboards.
Harmonising traditional Andean ingredients with contemporary craftsmanship, each dish at Las Qolqas’ ‘Pututu’ restaurant is a culinary masterpiece that showcases the rich flavours of the region with a modern flair.
Embracing a commitment to organic, seasonal, and locally sourced ingredients, Las Qolqas’ menu caters to diverse preferences, featuring enticing vegan options. Our culinary delights included exquisite dishes like pumpkin soup, alpaca loin, and chicken breast salad—each a testament to the resort’s dedication to exceptional dining.
Reset at Las Qolqas
Yoga in the Dome
Following the Inca trek, a rejuvenating yoga session was essential. Las Qolqas introduced a skilled yoga teacher, tailoring the session to our needs, focusing on restoration and revitalisation. It certainly worked wonders—a sense of tranquility and overall well-being ensued!
The geodesic dome provided an ideal setting for the yoga session, with panoramic views of gardens and towering rock formations through its windows, enhancing the serene and immersive experience.
Rejuvenate in the Spa
In pursuit of relaxation and mindfulness, scheduling a deep tissue massage and indulging in the “Andean Experience” at the Spa at Las Qolqas Eco Resort was an essential and rejuvenating choice.
Embarking on the ‘Andean Circuit,’ we alternated between the brisk cold shower, the wood-powered sauna, and the wonderfully rustic (and very hot) tub beside the flowing river—a truly invigorating and refreshing experience.
When choosing the treatment, there was a long menu offering a plethora of therapeutic and rejuvenating face and body care treatments. The deep tissue massage was firm pressure with slow strokes that helped release muscle tightness.
Following the complete massage and Andean Experience, the complete sense of relaxation was indescribable. Just what the doctor ordered!
Relax in nature
At Las Qolqas, tranquility envelops you as your mind and body unwind amid nature’s embrace. Immerse in well-being amongst flourishing greenery, with a botanic garden designed to attract hummingbirds and butterflies, fostering a serene connection with the natural world.
Experiences at Las Qolqas
La Qolqas offers a range of tours and trips in the Sacred Valley from cycling and ceremonies to thank Pachamama to sightseeing or hiking to the many Inca ruins including Machu Pichu, Ollantaytambo, and Pisac.
Having completed the 5 day Salkantay Trek, my stay at La Qolqas was all about eating, sleeping, rehydrating, and muscle recovery. As we had allotter bases covered, a cooking class was the way to go.
The resort has formulated Asociación Las Qolqas which contributes to the prosperity of the Patacancha River valley and the community. They invest in child education, family healthcare, protection, and preservation of the environment and archaeological sites. This is funded by donations and the profit from activities they promote – a good reason alone to sign up for one of the activities at Las Qolqas.
Top-class Cooking Lesson
Indulge in a culinary journey at Las Qolqas Eco Resort with Chef Linder Padilla. Experience the essence of Peruvian cuisine by handpicking organic vegetables and mastering the art of crafting Peruvian causa. Delight in a gastronomic three-course lunch featuring causa made by my own fair hands, trout from the local river, and delectable fig cheesecake.
The fun was not over. The gourmet lunch was followed by a spirited cocktail-making class, creating iconic drinks like Pisco Sour, Chilcano, and Pisco Punch. Thankfully, my behind-the-bar mixology class, crafting exquisite drinks was under expert guidance!
How green is Las Qolqas Eco Resort?
La Qolqas Eco Resort & Spa is eco-tourism at its best. They focus on protecting the environment, along with benefiting the local community and economy. I have listed below the green credentials I found during my stay there.
- Uses solar energy for electricity purposes
- Field-to-fork seasonal dining
- Refillable organic toiletries
- Zero single-use plastic including compostable bin bags
- A biodigester is used to treat wastewater for irrigation
- Water-efficient toilets and showers
- Supports and invests in the local community
Why you should stay at Las Qolqas Eco Resort
For the eco-conscious traveller seeking a Sacred Valley experience, Las Qolqas Eco Resort is the obvious choice. Even if you don’t fit that category, you’ll still adore the incredible hospitality, flavourful Andean cuisine, and the retreat to unwind in nature.
NOTE: My stay at La Qolqas was gifted. All opinions expressed in this blog are my own.
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