It may seem that nothing ever happens in the craggy slopes of the Andes and that the cordillera is in the collective memory of Chileans little more than a political border or the poetic locus of Gabriela Mistral, Pablo Neruda, and Nicanor Parra. The mountain villages have been falling into oblivion, and it is in reaction to this that a sensitive project has set out to save some thermal pools where muleteers in the past could make a stop on their way to Argentina. Their progressive decline, aggravated by earthquakes, has been curbed by three minimal interventions which are an invitation to rediscover the natural and historical heritage of the place.
Through a series of steps made of reinforced concrete and the treatment of the floor – harnessing the rich mineral quality of the terrain to create a saline crust on which to walk with a sure foot – the higher baths connect with the riverbed in a downhill course that accompanies the flow of the walter along two beam-gutters. A wooden platform placed between the walls of a nearby construction provides a complementary resting point with views of the Andean valley to contemplate.