Osvaldo Donoso Barrrios’ From Santa Cruz’ Aquelarre


Chile-born Osvaldo Donoso Barrrios’ talks to me about his life, from Chile to Peru (his mother was Peruvian) to Ecuador to California’s Marin. He has lived on Santa Cruz Island in Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands for over twenty years and now runs the Aquelarre Restaurant, which translates to witch’s coven. “It is where the witches meet,” he says. He talks about his love of all places he has lived and why, this life and his past one.

Osvaldo Donoso is the architect, designer and co-owner of this charming restaurant that is only open–by-appointment-only. It is set in the midst of the Santa Cruz Highlands. He once had a Swiss wife named Renee and he shows me her artwork, which is prodded up against the wall on the floor. It is one of many beautiful pieces scattered around the restaurant, from painted furniture, pottery, relics and whimsical artwork while the plants and trees blow in the wind outside as we catch the glorious blue sky and view of the Highlands. There are tequila palms in his garden, the same palms that the Palm hats are made from. I also learn that blackberries are a big problem on the island because he says, “they’re a very invasive plant.”

Renee Blodgett
Renee Blodgett is the founder of We Blog the World. The site combines the magic of an online culture and travel magazine with a global blog network and has contributors from every continent in the world. Having lived in 10 countries and explored nearly 80, she is an avid traveler, and a lover, observer and participant in cultural diversity.

She is also the CEO and founder of Magic Sauce Media, a new media services consultancy focused on viral marketing, social media, branding, events and PR. For over 20 years, she has helped companies from 12 countries get traction in the market. Known for her global and organic approach to product and corporate launches, Renee practices what she pitches and as an active user of social media, she helps clients navigate digital waters from around the world. Renee has been blogging for over 16 years and regularly writes on her personal blog Down the Avenue, Huffington Post, BlogHer, We Blog the World and other sites. She was ranked #12 Social Media Influencer by Forbes Magazine and is listed as a new media influencer and game changer on various sites and books on the new media revolution. In 2013, she was listed as the 6th most influential woman in social media by Forbes Magazine on a Top 20 List.

Her passion for art, storytelling and photography led to the launch of Magic Sauce Photography, which is a visual extension of her writing, the result of which has led to producing six photo books: Galapagos Islands, London, South Africa, Rome, Urbanization and Ecuador.

Renee is also the co-founder of Traveling Geeks, an initiative that brings entrepreneurs, thought leaders, bloggers, creators, curators and influencers to other countries to share and learn from peers, governments, corporations, and the general public in order to educate, share, evaluate, and promote innovative technologies.
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