June Donaldson and Edward Garry live at an altitude of 2,600 metres in Mosoj Llajta, Yotala, 20 minutes from the colonial city of Sucre in Bolivia, South America. Using earth and stones from the land, we have sculpted beautiful buildings which compliment the high desert landscape and incorporate creative and innovative elements of design.

We have designed a high quality hotel in Sucre for guests who want to get off the treadmill of travelling from city to city in South America. At Sky Hacienda you can dictate your own timing and choose how to enjoy your stay, whether it is doing very little or exploring the best that the Andes in Bolivia has to offer.

30 September 2011


In September we were delighted to have my brother Phillip and his wife Sue to stay. They had won a 5 week tour of South America in a raffle and decided to spend some time with us in Bolivia before embarking on their busy schedule in Peru and Argentina.

They were so happy to be visiting Sky Hacienda in person after following our blog for the past 2 years.

Sue takes charge of the coca leaves our workers chew during their breaks.
I took them to Potosi, the highest city in the world at 4,300 metres.
Sue and June in front of the Casa de la Moneda (Money Museum)
We also visited the Sunday market in Tarabuco.

Admiring the view from the pool terrace
Sue and Phil in Sucre
Phil and Sue were anxious to help out during their stay and, having planted thousands of trees on their property in South Australia, we were glad to have their expertise.

By the time they left they had planted nearly half of the 100 pine trees we had bought earlier and gave us the incentive to finish planting the remainder.
One of the four bottle brush trees they gave us as a farewell gift - native plants of Australia.
...and the tomato seedlings they transplanted are now flourishing in the vegetable patch.

22 September 2011


Spring has arrived and my walks with the dogs lead me through the thorn trees that are now covered in fluffy egg-yolk yellow blossom with a faint whiff of marzipan - like mimosa.

Our new walk gives us a different perspective on the Roundhouse and its garden, looking rather smart with a fresh coat of lime wash.

We have finished building the terraced garden in front of the bedrooms and, basing our design on the principles of xeriscaping, we plant local specimens that need little water. 
Most of our plants are cuttings from the cactus and succulents that grow on the land.  We use gravel to prevent the wind drying out the soil.  Later, in the rainy season, we will plant small areas of grass.
Stones add a sculptural aspect to our planting.
We buy a hundred young pine trees from the local agricultural college to be planted outside of the garden wall.  With only one metre between them they will grow to form a wind belt against the prevailing wind........
.......and install some more mature pines inside the garden.

14 September 2011


 With the countertops buffed, treated with double boiled linseed oil and two coats of wax, we were able to complete the last segments of the living room floor.
 The rich black concrete was carefully levelled out.
And as can be seen from this photo shot from the mezzanine, the concrete dried to a steel grey colour.
 A great view of the kitchen area.  Notice June admiring the new countertops at the top of the photo.
There were still the sinks to install and taps to plumb in, but with the floor completed we were at last able to plan our move into this part of the house, ten months after we had first started living in the Roundhouse.  And a very timely completion too as my brother and his wife were soon to arrive from Australia for a visit.

04 September 2011


The central island is prepared for concreting.
The butler's sink is formed separately.
Hand trowelling the worktop around cut-outs for the hob and vegetable sink.
Geronimo and Honorato polish out the remaining flaws.
Geronimo makes a final inspection of the butler's sink before installation.

Ed uses an electric polisher to finish the surface - a very wet job!