Patagonia Sur Travelblog #3 – Melimoyu Ecosystem Research Institute, Celine Cousteau and the Melimoyu Town Meeting

LandVest is honored to be the global marketing partner for the Patagonia Sur Portfolio of properties, an innovative project blending conservation, luxury real estate, ecotourism and community involvement and scientific research. Ruth Kennedy Sudduth, director of LandVest’s Residential Brokerage Division, recently visited Chile to learn more.

Patagonia Sur’s conservation efforts go beyond just offering a fantastic portfolio of properties for sale, and a top-flight ecotourism experience. They also engage with the science of the ecosystem and the health of local communities.

For a brief video on MERI with gorgeous footage of Melimoyu, click here.

Celine gives presentation at the local school in Melimoyu

As a part of that effort, we were invited to join Celine Cousteau, granddaughter of Jacques Cousteau, and eminent environmental filmmaker, and director of the Melimoyu Ecosytem Research Institute, Rafaela Landau, and her team in a presentation at the local school in the village of Melimoyu. A substantial portion of the town jammed into the one room schoolhouse (enrollment: 1) and engaged in an animated town-meeting discussion, coming to a crescendo with vigorous discussion of their role in the larger environmental effort. The overwhelming sense was of connectedness, between this tiny community at the end of the earth, huge aquaculture companies that sponsor the salmon farms in the bays, and the choices we make at the grocery store every day. “What can we do to help protect this beautiful place?” Isn’t that what we all want to know?

Click here for video of Celine Cousteau and MERI Director Rafaela Landau diving with the sea lions.

Celine Cousteau flying over the waterfalls

Patagonia Sur’s MERI institute engages in research centered on Melimoyu’s unique “edge” ecosystem, where glaciers, temperate rainforest, and the ocean meet. This habitat encourages a phenomenal biodiversity, from rare Darwin’s frogs to blue whales who come to calve in the bay. Visitors to Melimoyu have the opportunity, as we did, to learn about their research (did you know that blue whales have regional dialects?) and experience this incredible landscape through their expert eyes (you can listen to the blue whales here).

For more on Ruth Kennedy Sudduth’s Patagonia Sur trip, stay tuned for our upcoming blogs For more information on the Patagonia Sur Portfolio properties contact Ruth Kennedy Sudduth at 617-357-0455 or