Uruguay is known for its unspoiled landscape of rolling hills, pristine beaches and rich estuaries. The Maldonado coast has been dubbed the ‘St Tropez of Latin America’ thanks to its Mediterranean climate, sandy beaches and burgeoning crop of ritzy hotels and private developments.
Its brightest jewels are La Barra and the bombastic Punta del Este, known for their glitzy parties, nightlife and popular beaches.
Here are five Uruguayan properties for sale that put a unique spin on countryside living, from revived rustic fincas to contemporary villas…
Fasano Casa 49 in Las Piedras, La Barra, Maldonado Department
4 bedrooms; $2m Via Engel & Völkers
Designed by architect Carolina Proto, Fasano 49 is at the heart of the Las Piedras private community, which includes a five-star hotel, spa, horse riding school and tennis course. The concrete Uruguayan property has stark clean lines and sits on a golf course designed by A Palmer.
Rooms are set across a single storey and have brick and lapacho timber walls. Huge windows, outdoor terraces and a lap pool spanning the length of the living room maximise the far-reaching views.
La Barra finca, Maldonado Department
5 bedrooms; $4.5m via Engel & Völkers
Sitting beside a lake, this 1,200 sq ft finca designed by Diego Montero puts a modern spin on the classic fincas found across the Maldonado Department.
It sits within 17.38 acres of verdant land close to La Barra, which includes woodlands, a reservoir and two-bedroom guesthouse.
Las Cumbres, near Punta del Este, Maldonado Department
4 bedrooms; $2m via Luxury Estates
Local architects Benech and McGill designed this villa which nestles into the slopes of Punta Ballena sierras overlooking Laguna de los Sauces. Set over three floors, the Uruguayan property is designed with Modernist clean lines and floor-to-ceiling glass throughout. In the living room a stone fireplace takes centre stage, while other perks include a sauna, full gym, swimming pool and sun deck. The house is on the smaller end of the scale, sitting on a plot of 300 sqm, but its mountain views are preserved thanks to planning rules which prevent any other homes being built within view of it.
El Pedregal farmhouse near Estacion Pedrera, Canelones Department
$1.8m; 4 bedrooms via Sotheby’s International Realty
This sprawling ranch house near Estacion Pedrera was renovated in 2010 and features beamed ceilings, rustic wooden shutters and tiled floors. The living room has views onto a private lake and fields, and the Uruguayan property is surrounded by 146 acres of farmland, mostly used for horses. A 10-box horse stable, barns, tool sheds, a plant nursery and ranch-hand accommodation are included in the sale of the house, which is around 50 km from Montevideo. It’s also available to ‘try before you buy’ as an Airbnb, starting from $515 per night.
Casa Laguna de los Cisnes in Punta Ballena, Maldonado Department
4 bedrooms; $ 2,285,000 via Sotheby’s International Realty
Casa Laguna perches on the edge of a lake 15 minutes drive from Punta del Este and has enormous glass walls that make the most of its waterside setting. The single-storey Uruguayan property unravels over 465 sqm and rooms are broken up by shaded outdoor terraces.
The building’s rugged interiors feature textured concrete ceilings and stone floors.