SANTIAGO, CHILE—“The success of Chilean wine in the world is because [the country’s] geography and climate allow a great variety of grapes to grow, which brings along a great diversity of terroirs,” said Sabrina Tettamanti, GM, Singular Santiago. This rich earthly landscape, or terroir, influences the taste and flavor of a wine, and deep within the soil is the starting point for Singular’s new underground wine room.
Helmed by the Sahli family—Felipe, and sons, Nicolás and Tomás—the property is in the center of the Lastarria district. “The hotel’s location creates a bond with the city’s heritage and roots, making it a unique way to experience Chile’s capital city,” said Tettamanti. “The idea is to bring together our national and international clients with Chilean wine, and showcase the various grapes developed in our country.”
It’s the second property within The Singular Hotels that, along with its sister property The Singular Patagonia, follows an ethos where each hotel is intentionally designed to be original and offer a singular experience. “They are hotels that embrace the cultural, natural and social heritage of each location, and that’s why it’s important to have an exclusive space for one of Chile’s main products—wine. La Cava was created for wine lovers in downtown Santiago,” she said.
Building an underground chamber to house wine is purposeful, but also acknowledges the natural environment in which wine is produced. “Wine cellars, cavas de vino in Spanish, are physical spaces where wine is kept in bottles or barrels that have a certain temperature and humidity for the wine’s correct storage,” Tettamanti said. “They are characterized as being intimate. The hotel team named the room La Cava to transmit a feeling that keeps the wine as the main focus.”
Designed by Enrique Concha & Co., La Cava opens with imposing, double-height wooden doors; in the center, a table seats 10 guests, and floor-to-ceiling shelves can hold up to 2,000 bottles of wine. “The look aims to reflect an antique, elegant and cozy cellar. The wine shelves are made of American oak with a lime patina; leather chairs mimic antique stalls, and the English furniture, also comprised of solid oak, are replicas of Jacob;inos furniture,” she said. “It’s a very simple design, with no decorative elements, as wine is the protagonist,” she said.
Sommelier Rocio Castillo has an extensive, global knowledge of wines and joined Singular Santiago prior to its opening to define the selection of wines that will pair with the food. “Rocio decides which wines are chosen by considering the diverse valleys of Chile; the types of grapes; and the quality and price of the wines. Each season, the wine changes according to the weather. In summer, the menu includes light, refreshing wines and, in winter, there are bolder wines,” she said. In addition, Castillo manages the wine stock, its conservation and temperature to ensure the ideal condition of the wine, as well as the pairings for the new dishes.
Sophistication and quality are at the heart of its gastronomy and mixology offerings at Singular Santiago, according to Tettamanti. Chef Laurent Pasqualetto leads the F&B program and mixes local products with French culinary techniques. “Our gastronomy is a differing element in the local culinary scene with dishes such as guanaco tartar, Chiloé black-border oysters and lamb loin directly from Puerto Natales, among others,” she said. “In addition, we seek out the best providers to have the most diversity for our clients. In our wine selection, we count on several types of grapes such as Carignan, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah.”
For Singular Santiago, delivering an experience that combines simple ambiance with local ingredients and diverse Chilean wines helps it stand out from the rest, according to Tettamanti. “There are no spaces of this kind, related to wine, for intimate events in downtown Santiago. It’s a tool to differentiate even more from the market option,” she said.