We spent our last night of the W here. Coming from the Refugio Los Curenos, we were caught in a rainstorm and hiked for about an hour in it before reaching the Hotel Los Torres. We almost abandoned our reservations at Central when we saw the luxurious hotel but were ultimately glad we pushed on the extra 10 minutes to the Refugio (it's much less expensive).
Central is the newer of the two refugios in that immediate area (Norte is the older one; we didn't see it but heard about it from other travelers) and is the nicest of the three that we stayed at on the trip (Paine Grande and Los Cuernos are the others). The staff at Central aren't the friendliest people; the exception is the bartender who was a really nice guy.
We checked in and put our packs in our bunkroom; there are six bunks per room and they are clean and comfortable. A huge plus were the large lockers in each room - bring a small padlock (those aren't provided). Towels can be rented for $2,000 pesos each ($4 USD). The bathrooms were the nicest of the three refugios that we stayed at. Very clean with lovely showers that had lots of hot water and good water pressure.
The beds are very comfortable with sheets, a warm comforter and a pillow. Despite the cold temperatures, we were warm and cozy at night.
There's a large communal area consisting of the dining room and a large, attractive bar area. In addition, each of the two wings has another, smaller communal area with a sunken floor, bean bag chairs, a hammock and - nirvana! - a wood-burning stove. We showered, changed into dry clothes, lit a fire, bought a bottle of wine at the bar and spent most of the afternoon on the bean bag chairs in front of the fire.
Dinner and breakfast were the best we had on the trail. Both in terms of service (not chaotic like Los Curenos) and quality of food (we had a great chicken enchilada for dinner and wonderful homemade bread). The wines by the glass are pretty awful so opt for a bottle instead (this isn't included in the price of dinner); they do have some really nice reds.
The next morning, it was still raining (and snowing on the Torres) so we stayed at the refugio until the bus came to transfer us back to the bus to Puerto Natales. We had to be out of the rooms by about 9:30am so we packed up and moved our things out to the bean bag chairs where we read books and talked with other travelers. There's no wireless available at the refugio but you can walk the ~10 minutes back to the hotel and pay for wireless (there's no shuttle).
Overall, a great experience even in bad weather. Pricey but given how remote this area is, it was worth it if you don't want to splurge for the hotel.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Refugio Torre Central is located in "las Torres" sector, at the beginning of the W trek, you may access from Laguna Amarga (entrance to the park), taking the shuttles from this point to las torres. Next to Torre Central there is Torre Norte Refugio (for 60 people is the first FS refugio built in the 90´s), where guests must make their check in and have their meals at Refugio Torre Central.Torre Central is a very well equipped Refugio for 60 people, with Shop, Restaurant, Bar, shared rooms for 6, shared bathrooms and central heating.We are an eco friendly company so we do not have high demand devices; here we have a diesel engine to produce energy that we save in our batteries system, we invite you to help us to take care of it. Useful info: bring sandals for showers, towel (rental available).For tax exemption, do not forget to bring your passport, immigration card given when enter to Chile and foreign currency (tax exemption not available for camping guests) ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Refugio Torre Central-Torres Del Paine Hotel Torres Del Paine
- Refugio Torre Central-Torres Del Paine Aisen Region/Torres Del Paine National Park, Chile