Often called the “St. Tropez of South America,” glamorous Punta del Este is where Royal Holiday Cruises guests come to play, along with celebrities and discerning Argentineans and Brazilians. Once a modest fishing village, Punta del Este is now a major destination for wealthy South Americans and international celebrities. Despite its well-heeled clientele, this glitzy resort town is considerably more affordable than comparable towns in Europe. It offers members of Royal Holiday Cruises miles of gorgeous beaches, superb dining and shopping, and excellent entertainment, all with a refreshing ocean breeze, warm tropical sunshine, and a spicy Latin flair.
Sitting on a rocky point jutting into the Rio de la Plata, Casapueblo is a unique museum and hotel created by famous Uruguayan abstract artist, Carlos Paez Vilaro. The 13-story complex is a work of surrealist art that draws on architectural influences from all over the world. From here, Royal Holiday Cruises visitors can enjoy absolutely amazing views of the Rio de la Plata river.
With miles of shoreline, Punta del Este has a beach for every taste: windy Playa Chileno for windsurfers, the locally favored La Barra, Playa Brava for beach loungers, trendy Playa Mantantiales for celebrity spotting, and many more.
For avid shoppers travelling with Royal Holiday Cruises, Avenida Gorlero is the town’s main commercial street. The avenue is lined with excellent cafes and restaurants, as well as many elegant high-end shops, such as Yves St. Laurent. A charming and very popular handicrafts market is also regularly held in Artigas Square on Avenida Gorlero.
Punta del Este Lighthouse
The sophistication of Punta del Este even extends to its lighthouse. The windows of this 150-foot-tall structure are crafted of imported French crystal. Energetic tourists can walk the 150 steps of its elegant spiral staircase to take in the gorgeous view.
Thrusting up from the sand on Brava Beach, five immense stone fingers reach for the sky. This sculpture—sometimes also called “Monument to the Drowned”—was created by Chilean artist Mario Irarrazabal in 1982. Since then, it has become one of Uruguay’s most renowned landmarks.
Conrad Resort & Casino
Considered by many Royal Holiday Cruises guests to be the heart of nightlife in Punta del Este, the Conrad offers top casino entertainment, including elaborate Vegas-style shows put on by leading Latin American stars.
Fine dining and excellent service are hallmarks of the excellent yet moderately priced meals at Andres. With outdoor tables under canopies, Royal Holiday Cruises guests can enjoy the gentle sea breeze while sampling the local fish, grilled meats, or expertly prepared soufflés.
This small island has two popular beaches: Garden Port and Honda Beach. It is a popular spot for water-sport enthusiasts.
Isla de los Lobos
The “Island of the Wolves” is home to one of the largest colonies of sea lions in the western hemisphere. Boat tours to see the feisty sea animals depart regularly from the marina in Punta del Este. Tourists with Royal Holiday Cruises can also view the island’s impressive lighthouse, which stands nearly 200 feet tall.