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Upon Arrival

Cottages at Finichico

Upon arrival to Fini Chico we hope you will enjoy your stay and make the most of everything it has to offer. The following points have been written to help you to fully enjoy it.

Water

The water comes from the snow level about 10 kms away. It is a very precious commodity here so please, as much as you can, recycle it. For example, the water from the swimming pool is used to water the trees below it Please refrain from taking over long showers. Whilst people here drink water straight from the tap, we recommend you boil it first.

Taking a shower

In order to have hot water in your shower you will need to light the gas heater situated in the kitchen of Almendra and on outside wall of kitchen of Pistacio.Our care taker Ozwaldo is always there to help with the heaters and wood for the BBQ.

Instructions:

Turn the gas tap below the heater on pipe till it is flush with the pipe

Once the gas heater is lit and you are in the shower, turn hot water tap on hard. You should hear gas light up. Wait a few seconds for the water to heat up. Once hot, add water with the cold tap until you get the right temperature.

Alternatively please ask Oswaldo to light and demonstrate how it works for you.

Washing Clothes

There is a special washing sink built of volcanic rock beside the barbecue which is excellent for hand washing. Due to the shortage of electricity there is no washing machine in the houses but if needed Ozwaldo will happily wash items for you.

Swimming pool

The swimming pool water comes from the snow level and it involves a week of our water supply to fill it up, hence we do not use chemicals as the water is recycled to the trees below. Normally Oswaldo is in charge of all issues with the swimming pool. There is also a shallow toddlers pool next to the swimming pool for small children.

Electricity

Fini Chico is not connected to mains electricity. All our power is obtained from the solar panels beside Almendra Cottage. If energy is not used efficiently there will not be enough power for the evening. We therefore suggest you behave in an energy conscious way and turn off lights whenever not needed. Each house has an ice box but you will need to buy ice in a supermarket first. We recommend these for use during hot months only.

Toilet

Our cesspit is organic (no chemicals used) and so it cannot break down paper or other substances so please do not put any toilet paper, tampons or towels into the toilet. There is a bin beside each toilet for paper etc so please use it.

Barbecue and chill out room

Traditional 'adobe oven' for baking bread behind the house in refugiofinichico

In 2010 we finally finished our chill out room, a room made out of hand carved stones. It took 5 people 8 months to finish. It has large BBQ, cooking facilities and ping pong table with several hammocks all around it. It is an awesome place to chill out during the hot hours of the day. Wood for the barbecue is provided, please ask Oswaldo to help. If you use his services for barbeques and other small issues we recommend to show your gratitude when you leave.

Rubbish

Tied bags of rubbish should be placed in the big grey dustbin outside each cottage. You can take rubbish down with you when you go out and leave it in the large rubbish area on the left hand side as you drive down just before the main gate to Santa Sofia.

The Dogs

Although not unfriendly, the dogs are wary of anyone they don't know. They bark but do not bite and if you feed them they will begin to like you!

Communication

Telephone in both cottages - you can receive all international and any local calls on this phone. You can use the telephone to call internationally by buying a telephone card – 5,000 or 10,000 pesos and follow the instructions on the card. Generally speaking you have to dial 188 + 0 and country code and area code and number.

Internet

The Vodafone wireless USB broadband modem works Ok in the mountain.

Useful telephone numbers and emails:

Refugio Fini Chico : 00-56-2- 5131057 (local calls only)

Mo Fini Mobile (owner): 00-44-7885-410998 email: mofini@btinternet.com

Porteria (Main gate/reception): 2852055

Reverse charge no: 188182

Wild Animals

You will be glad to hear that Chile has no poisonous snakes at all. You may come across tarantulas here but they wont hurt you. Humming birds abound as well as other wild birds, quails, eagles and other birds of prey as well as wild cats and condors. Climb the mountain and if you are lucky you may see very large iguana or even a condor.

Food, Wine and Shopping

To the right of the entrance gates to Santa Sofia (when you are leaving) there is a small local shop selling basic provisions – wine, beer, bread and locally grown vegetables. There is also a grocery shop across San Carlos canal selling seasonal fruit which is cheaper and generally nicer than what you will buy in the supermarkets. The nearest supermarket is only a few minutes drive from the entrance gate, it is a relatively small one, a Lider Express, but is fine for getting most things. For fresh meat and fish we recommend you visit Monte Carlo supermarket, only 15 minutes away on Avenida La Florida. Chilean meat and fish are divine and we highly recommend Oswaldo prepares a whole organic salmon on the fire or barbecued meat. Our children love Chilean sausages. There are various types – the best are chorizo and longaniza. Normally we hate sausages in England but we assure you in Chile they are quite different. They are nice as a starter. Our favourite dish in Chile is whole salmon on the fire with our own grown vegetables and fresh bread. One of the nicest ways to eat meat is cecina – very thinly sliced beef with salt on, left to hang in the sun for a couple of hours, then cooked quickly for a couple of minutes over a fire. Then serve with freshly prepared guacamole and black Mexican beans and tortillas, all washed down with a couple of glasses of red Chilean wine.

Chile is one of the most famous places in the world for wine, especially red wine. There are many varieties of relatively inexpensive wine, on average about £2.00 a bottle, available in all supermarkets. The nearest and one of the most famous – Cousino Macul - has vineyards that you can see from the balcony of the main house. Sadly enough, like the rest of Santiago, less and less green exists as they build more and more houses. Most of the vineyards are moving south. There are other famous vineyards in Pilque, on the way to Cajon del Maipo – Concha y Torro. Other good wines include 120, Santa Carolina (white), Gato Negro, Carmen. From our experience Santa Carolina and Cousino Macul Gris 2003 are good, as well as most of the reds. Concha y Torro is nice and fruity. If you are into beer I strongly recommend Bolivian beer – Pacena or Mexican Corona as Chilean beer is one of the worst in the world!

Guestbook

We hope you have a wonderful stay and enjoy the peace and tranquillity of refugiofinichico. Your comments on our website or in the book in the cottages are always most welcome