Uruguay is a country with many marvelous things to offer. It is famous for its wines and gastronomy but something that is not talked about that often is the country’s artistic culture which is incredibly rich and very appreciated by society. This is where the club hotel Casapueblo comes in.
Something that Uruguayans take great pride in is their artists, and this is proven by the many museums found around the country. Most hotels feature works by Uruguay’s most celebrated artists which make them one of a kind.
A testament to this artistic legacy lies just 15 kilometers away from Punta del Este: Casapueblo. Casapueblo is arguably the most iconic piece of work of one of Uruguay’s most charismatic artists, Carlos Paez Vilaro.
The Result of Dedication and Hard Work
It was described by the artist as a livable sculpture and this statement is quite accurate. This building was constructed by Carlos Paez Vilaro with his own hands in the most artisanal way.
He started working on this majestic piece of art when he was 35 and it took 36 years to complete it. Club Hotel Casapueblo was built gradually, without a blueprint. It started as a small shack made out of wood called La Pionera that overlooked the ocean and over the years it started to grow.
When the city asked for the blueprints of Casapueblo, an architect was tasked by Carlos Paez Vilaro to make them and he had to spend about a whole month studying the shape of this building to achieve it.
The Club Hotel Casapueblo: A Testament to European Influence in Uruguay
The building has a notable Mediterranean influence and its white walls evoke the beauty of Greek islands such as Santorini. It has been called by the artist as an ode to the sun and offers incredible views of the Atlantic Ocean and its striking sunsets.
It has become a must-see for any tourist visiting Uruguay due to its uniqueness and beauty. What makes Casapueblo so particular, among other things, is the attention to detail. Each room is special and different in its own way.
There are endless rooms, hallways, and stairs to discover during your stay. Nowadays, Club Hotel Casapueblo serves as both a hotel and a museum.
The Perfect Spot for a Weekend Getaway
The hotel has 72 rooms, all of which have a balcony with an exceptional view of the Atlantic Ocean. As previously stated, all rooms are different and there is a wide variety for you to choose from that ranges from double bedrooms and suites to apartments for up to 8 people.
Each room is completely equipped with a TV, telephone, kitchen or kitchenette, freezer, microwave, and complimentary Wi-Fi. The hotel also has a gym, a spa, and a pool for guests to enjoy during their free time.
Since Club Hotel Casapueblo is a huge attraction for people vising the Department of Maldonado, it is important to make reservations if you wish you stay at the hotel. The average price for a room is approximately 225 euros.
Carlos Paez Vilaro, Uruguayan Icon
The museum has many of the works of Carlos Paez Vilaro. This artist was known for being quite a traveler. He learned about many of the cultures of the world and became particularly fascinated with African culture.
This can be seen in his art, which is displayed not only in Club Hotel Casapueblo and Uruguay but also in other countries like Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Panama, Haiti, the United States, and in some parts of Africa and Polynesia.
However, in Club Hotel Casapueblo you will find an extensive exhibition of his life and work like no other in the world. Going to the museum is more affordable than staying at the hotel, at just 7 euros.
This gives you access to many rooms filled with Paez Vilaro’s art, as well as a multimedia room that tourists recommend to visit first to understand and appreciate his work even more.
An Insight into Paez Vilaro’s Life and Struggles
One part of the exhibition that gets a lot of attention is a display about Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571. This was a national tragedy that involved an accident where an airplane with 45 passengers and crew struck a mountain due to pilot error in a remote area of the Andes Mountains.
The reason why this was relevant for Carlos Paez Vilaro was that his son was a passenger on this flight. Search efforts were canceled eight days after the tragedy but the artist along with the families of the other passengers conducted private searches until finally 16 survivors were rescued 72 days after the crash, including Paez Vilaro’s son. This event had a huge impact on the artist’s life.
The Sun is King in Casapueblo
Without a doubt, the best part of going to Club Hotel Casapueblo is enjoying the sunset. Every day, a special ceremony occurs at sundown.
As the sun sets on the horizon of the Atlantic Ocean, Carlos Paez Vilaro’s voice can be heard over the speakers as he recites a poem dedicated to the sun that lasts as long as the sunset. Once this happens, the museum closes its doors.
How to Get to Casapueblo?
Casapueblo is located in Punta Ballena. This translates into “Whale Point”, and the reason for this name is that it is very common to see whales in these waters since they come to this part of the Atlantic Ocean to give birth between August and October.
It is approximately 15 kilometers away from the vibrant city of Punta del Este, and about 120 kilometers away from the country’s capital, Montevideo. There are different ways to get to Casapueblo.
If you wish to only enjoy the museum and the sunset, the best option would be to go to the Punta del Este’s Municipal Tourist Office, where you will find 1-day tours to Casapueblo that will take you to this majestic site and bring you back to Punta del Este. Another way to get there is by taxi or taking a public bus.
However, the latter is not recommended since the closest stop to Casapueblo is still too far away. Finally, you can rent a car and make your way to Punta Ballena.
No matter what is the reason for your trip to Uruguay, you simply can’t leave without visiting Casapueblo. This building will transport you to a different world full of art and relaxation.