Inside Explorers House, the First Private Club for Antarctica21’s Polar Expeditions

Explorers House, the First Private Club for Antarctica21's Polar Expeditions

Antarctica21, the company that operates Fly & Cruise Expeditions to Antarctica, has announced its new venue, Explorers House in Punta Arenas, a port town in the south of Chilean Patagonia and the gateway to Antarctic journeys is now open.

Explorers House is the first of its kind and has been designed to welcome Antarctica21’s guests, providing exclusive services and amenities to enjoy and assist them in their preparation before embarking on the unique small ship expeditions.

For two decades, Antarctica21 has been flying travellers to Antarctica, skipping the often-turbulent two-day Drake Passage crossing and exploring the Peninsula on boutique ships. Explorers House provides a space for the start of a journey to one of the most remote and untouched places on Earth.

A view of the buildings interior

Designed with the feel of a private member’s club, Explorers House is a space that encapsulates the spirit of Antarctica21’s expeditions.

The library area inside the building

It provides an elegant lounge and bar with a restaurant serving international and Chilean cuisine and space for up to 200 guests over two floors. The venue also includes a library with over 100 specialist polar travel and nature books, a garden area, and a shop exclusively for guests.

A theatre-style presentation room will host welcome talks and briefing sessions covering subjects such as science, the environment, and the history of polar exploration.

A photograph of extensive seating inside the property

The venue opened its doors to welcome its first ship guests on 14th December 2023. The official opening was attended by local dignitaries from Punta Arenas as well as Jaime Vásquez, Co-founder and President of Antarctica21, “As Antarctica21 grew, we began thinking of a space in Punta Arenas where we could welcome our guests in a way that matched the feeling and elegance they would experience on our ships in Antarctica.”

“We are delighted to have been able to develop and design this special place of our own and to have the opportunity to build on the cultural heritage of the region. This unique, visionary venue will enhance the adventures of Antarctica21’s travellers bound for the icy wilderness of Antarctica.”

Inside Explorers House, the First Private Club for Antarctica21's Polar Expeditions 3

Explorers House provides an exclusive welcome space for Antarctica21’s guests in Punta Arenas, where, during the busy Austral summer, travellers compete for hotels and restaurants in the area. They will also enjoy the same service quality they receive aboard the company’s Magellan Explorer and Ocean Nova ships.

Explorers House has been designed in a heritage building previously used as a warehouse to process and export Patagonian wool and leather from local ranchers in the early 1900s.

A photo showing the mixture of metals and woods used for the interior design

It was fully restored by prestigious and renowned Chilean architect Pedro Kovacic, with interiors designed by Enrique Concha, who has also been involved in designing Antarctica21’s expedition vessel, Magellan Explorer.

Architect Pedro Kovacic furthers Antarctica21’s commitment to sustainability by incorporating rainwater harvesting and a solar panel system for underfloor heating, in addition to upcycling much of the original wooden structure of the building.

Andrea Tellez, Manager at Antarctica21’s Explorers House, said, “We have always dreamed of establishing a base in Punta Arenas. Our main goal is for our guests to feel at home and be inspired by the spirit of adventure and exploration as they prepare for their journey. It is a cosy retreat and a contemporary refuge from the wilds of Chilean Patagonia for guests to enjoy as they await their expedition.”

Explorers House is located a five-minute walk from the main plaza in the historic centre of Punta Arenas. It also hosts the Antarctic Time Tunnel, a development project of Antarctica21’s Foundation.

The Foundation undertakes activities in support of science, art, conservation, and education, contributing to the creation and awareness of Antarctic knowledge.

Established and built by a consortium of local people, Antarctica21 offers air cruises to the Antarctic Peninsula and sea voyages to the Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas), South Georgia and Antarctica for fewer than 100 guests onboard Ocean Nova and Magellan Explorer and is the only Antarctic operator based locally with a team in place all year round.

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A large wall mural displaying an icebergInside Explorers House, the First Private Club for Antarctica21's Polar Expeditions 4

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