Imagine taking a hill-side in the heart of a cloud forest that is also home to one of the world’s most celebrated archeological sites on earth, and transforming it into a travelers’ retreat – a place to relax, explore nature, encounter the wonders of the Inca civilization and to luxuriate in a atmosphere of refinement, caring and hospitality.

Back in 1975, that was exactly the dream of Inkaterra’s founder, Jose Koechlin, an entrepreneur from Lima whose dream was to make Machu Picchu available to visitors in a way that would be loyal to the site’s holistic Inca heritage. And that would enable guests to immerse themselves in the natural biodiversity, beauty, tranquility and mysticism that are the hallmarks of the Cusco Cloud Forest. Thousands of tourists take the train from Cusco daily to visit the magnificent ruins of Machu Picchu, discovered in 1911 by American explorer, Hiram Bingham. And 85% of those visitors spend a few hours at the site, and then board the train back to Cusco.

Koechlin’s dream was to create a haven for visitors that would allow them the luxury of a leisurely visit to Machu Picchu combined with an encounter with what he terms ‘The Inca Experience.’ “The Andes is the home of wonders,” says Koechlin, “not merely archeological remains, but a place of mystery with an aura of tranquility, exotic plants, rare birds and wildlife – and it is all this that we wanted to make accessible to visitors to the Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel.”

The Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel spreads itself over 15 acres of low-rise cottages, tropical gardens, waterfalls, plantations and wild forest interspersed by paths. “The entire construction of the hotel was accomplished at a time when it was virtually impossible to import luxury items to Peru,” says Koechlin, “so Denise, my wife, and I had to design, build, create, fashion, manufacture, weave and construct everything from scratch.”  The construction of the hotel was undertaken by manual laborers from the region, who cleared ground, hacked boulders into bricks, constructed pathways and steps just as their Inca ancestors had done 500 years ago. The result is one of the world’s most appealing boutique hotels, with rooms and suites nestled in one or two-storey whitewash cottages reached by attractive stone pathways, romantically lit at night.  The dining room, bar, boutique and reception building are each decorated with Inca artifacts and fabrics. Some of the most charming features include the library, with its imaginatively bundled piles of books; the wall in the Mikhuna Wasi dining room displaying scores of priceless pre-Columbian artifacts; and the lounge’s cozy fireplaces.  The Andean sauna is an igloo made of indigenous bamboo and fresh eucalyptus leaves covered with Andean grass. The spa provides a wide choice of massage treatments to guests weary from hiking the Machu Picchu ruins.

“We needed faucets that would look ‘authentic,’” says Denise Koechlin, so we had them produced at an iron-foundry in Lima. We wanted Inca blankets for the beds, so we commissioned the wool from sheep farmers, had it dyed to our specifications, and woven by a team of local seamstresses. We designed the furniture – replicating the Andean low-log chairs that symbolize humility.”

Each guest is provided with a soft cotton bathrobe, as well as rubber slippers ingeniously carved – with conservation in mind – from used tires! Each bathroom contains a basket of amenities unique to Inkaterra: fragrant aromatherapy oil and a terracotta container in which to warm it, citronella lotion in a brown glass bottle, organic soap and shampoo and a terracotta skin exfoliator, created by Sandra Masias and produced uniquely in Inkaterra’s own workshops. Every aspect of the Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel expresses the imagination of Koechlin and his team of visionaries.

But the Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel is much more than the actual hotel.  Acres of grounds, interspersed by streams and gushing waterfalls, are the hotel’s signature. Escorted tours are arranged of the Orchid Walk, where Inkaterra’s on-site chief botanist, Carmen Soto, armed with a magnifying glass, passionately shows visitors some of the grounds’ 372 native species of orchids: more are found in their natural habitat at the Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel than anywhere else on earth.

Then there is the Fern Walk, and the chance to see 16 different species of hummingbirds, 162 bird species and 108 species of butterflies. And there is the bear sanctuary, where Inkaterra in association with The Bear Rescue Program readapts endangered Andean Spectacled Bears for release back into the wild. All within the hotel private gardens. The Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel is self-reliant for much of its produce too – with its own avocado groves, tea plantations and herb garden fragrant with mint, verbena, lemongrass and rosemary. The hotel farms its own trout and has access to organic free-range Andean beef.

The hotel entrance connects directly to the Machu Picchu railroad station, whose construction was a vision of Inkaterra’s founders. Across the tracks is the Inkaterra Café, ideal for daytime snacks and lunch.  And the hotel abuts the village of Aguas Calientes, from which, starting before sunrise, buses depart for the 20-minute winding ride to the Machu Picchu ruins.  The village has developed during the last decade after the creation of the Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel which is the main employer in town. 

The Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel has 83 rooms and suites. It is a fusion of opulent comfort, excellent cuisine, Incan style and construction, a mélange of tropical gardens, plantations, natural beauty and conservation. Its visitors are able to transform a customary exploration of the extraordinary ruins of Machu Picchu into an authentic encounter with the “Inca Experience.”

To know more about Inkaterra, visit or call 1-800 442 5042

To know more about this release, contact Ann-Rebecca Laschever at 212-288-1144,

This press release is a service of WEILL, Geoffrey Weill Associates, 15 East 84 Street, New York NY 10028, USA