ONCE A RANCH ravaged by grazing cattle, Hosteria Rincón del Socorro is now a 30,000-acre wildlife refuge and eco- retreat in Argentina's northeastern Corrientes province. Opened in 2004, it owes its makeover to the Conservation Land Trust, founded by Doug Tompkins, former owner of The North Face, and is now a magnet for solitude seekers preferring the company of marsh deer, ostrich-like nandus, and capybaras (the world's largest rodents) to chatty tourists.
ROOM & BOARD: Tompkins and his wife, Kris, restored three white-stucco-and-red-tile-roof bungalows and El Casco, the main house, built in 1896. El Casco has six vast rooms with high beamed-ceilings and plush beds, a cozy, well-stocked library, and a screened veranda perfect for afternoon tea and chipas, a bread made from cassava. Chef Ramona Godoy serves inspired soups and pastaswith produce fresh from the property's organic gardensin the quaint dining room. Better still, book an asado (cookout) at the barbecue house, where you'll feast on grass-fed organic beef and lamb. Then sit poolside under the stars to savor Godoy's creamy flan and a ramonia rum-basil-and-lemon libation.
OUT THE BACK DOOR: Ride with a gaucho on one of Rincón's native criollo horses. (You won't want to leave the fleecy saddle.) On a wildlife safari, look for maned wolves, jaguarundis (weasel-like felines), and a variety of birds.
DETAILS: From $130 per person, including meals and activities; 011-54-37-82-49-7073, www.rincondelsocorro.com