Hotel We Love: Hotel Santa Fe, Santa Fe, NM

By Maya Stanton
January 12, 2022
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The only majority Native American-owned hotel in downtown Santa Fe offers art, culture, and stand-out accommodations at a fair price.

As soon as you step foot in the lobby at Hotel Santa Fe, it's clear you're somewhere that takes its location seriously. From the rough-hewn vigas, posts, and lintels—hallmarks of the signature Santa Fe Style—in the lobby to the heavy leather furniture, southwestern textiles, and Native American art featured throughout the property, that sense of place permeates every corner. Closer to the Railyard than the hustle and bustle of Santa Fe's historic central Plaza, it makes a good base of operations for exploring both areas. And, as the only Native American-owned hotel downtown, it provides guests with an opportunity to learn a bit more about an underrepresented culture and history, all while supporting the local economy. 


Hotel Santa Fe opened in 1991, but its story begins in 1988, when the idea of a collaboration between local business folks and the Picurís Pueblo, one of 23 tribes in New Mexico, was first floated. At that time, other Pueblos in the area were looking to casinos to provide revenue streams, but given its remote mountain location, that wasn’t an option for the Picurís, so the Bureau of Indian Affairs suggested looking to Santa Fe and its robust tourism industry for opportunities. That partnership produced the only property in the city’s downtown area that’s majority Native American–owned, and it offers guests a unique glimpse of Picurís Pueblo art and culture, from sculpture and storytelling to drumming and dance.


Though its adobe exterior lends an air of antiquity, Hotel Santa Fe’s accommodations are anything but. Each of the 28 rooms and 90 suites is kitted out with crisp white sheets, down comforters, granite bathroom vanities, and southwestern-style pine furnishings, while the 35 rooms and suites in the Hacienda, a separate building with a more exclusive, upscale feel, come equipped with remote-controlled fireplaces, professional butler service, and walk-in showers. All rooms have WiFi and fully stocked minibars.


A few years before the hotel’s partners acquired the land upon which they’d eventually build, the city announced plans to revitalize the Railyard. It would take more than 20 years for then Mayor Montaño’s vision to be realized, but after the project finally debuted in 2008, Hotel Santa Fe was literally in prime position: a five-minute walk to avant-garde art at SITE Santa Fe in the Railyard, with its galleries, shops, and fantastic farmers’ market, but still only 15 minutes from the historic Plaza and its surrounding museums, restaurants, and bars. Not up for the walk? The hotel has a free shuttle that will deliver guests door to door within a certain radius, so you can leave your car parked in the lot (also free!) without fretting about trying to nab one of those elusive spots downtown.


The City Different is known for its chile and its margaritas, and there are enough of both here to keep even the biggest diehard happy—and more. Within a couple of blocks of the Hotel Santa Fe, there’s a brewery, a hard-cider taproom, and a distillery, not to mention coffee shops and cafes, so guests should have no trouble quenching their thirst; nearby snack options include a hot-dog spot and Sage Bakehouse, known for its green-chili cheese bread and flaky almond croissants. For a more substantial meal, venture a few blocks north to Cowgirl BBQ for smoked meats and chiles rellenos, and a few blocks further for legendary breakfast burritos at Tia Sophia’s, blue-corn pancakes at La Fonda on the Plaza, crowd-pleasers like queso, guac, ground-beef tacos, and margaritas at the Shed, and four-star modern Mexican moles at Sazón. At the hotel itself, Amaya serves a seasonally appropriate menu combining local Pueblo and northern New Mexican cuisines; between Memorial Day and Labor Day, private family-style dinners are also available in a teepee that comes complete with traditional hides and blankets. If you’ve opted for a room in the Hacienda, you’ll have access to an “afternoon reception” (otherwise known as happy hour) on the sixth floor, with complimentary drinks, hors d'oeuvres, and city views from the terrace.


Santa Fe’s art scene is justly renowned, and you don’t have to step foot off the property to see why. (Though you should!) The hotel is home to a multimillion-dollar collection of Native American art, and paintings, pottery, and sculpture are interspersed inside and out. There’s live music in the lounge on Fridays and Saturdays, as well as a spa, a heated pool (closed from about Thanksgiving to Easter), and a hot tub. The spa menu features the usual suspects—massage, reflexology, facials, and the like—but even if you’re not going to spend time on the treatment table, it’s worth a trip to upstairs just to gawk at the gorgeous wall of crystals at the entrance.


Starting at $129.

Hotel Santa Fe
1501 Paseo de Peralta
Santa Fe, NM 87501
(855) 825-9876


Save up to 50% on Hotels

1 rooms, 1 guests
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How to Have a Fun, Low-Key Weekend in San Francisco

Whether you’re visiting a city for the first time or the tenth, it’s easy to find yourself scrambling to fill every moment with must-see, can’t-miss stuff. There’s a time and a place for trips like that, but once in awhile, it’s refreshing to go somewhere and just...hang out. That's how I spent a recent weekend in San Francisco, and I can’t recommend it highly enough. Here’s how I did it. Day One: Start Off Strong. Cappucino at Ritual Coffee. (Maya Stanton) After a late arrival the night before, I was desperate for caffeine, and my friend had hopped an early flight that morning, so he was in the same boat. (We were really lucky to be staying with friends who live in NoPa, but even without our awesome hosts, I’d recommend a hotel or Airbnb away from the usual touristy zones, just like I’d recommend that visitors to New York stay somewhere other than Times Square.) 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(We missed high tide, which is when it's at its best; make sure you check those times before you go.) Brunch at Presidio Social Club. (Courtesy Presidio Social Club) We were already in the Marina district, and from there it’s just a quick scoot over to the Presidio, where we had a reservation for brunch in the former barracks now known as the Presidio Social Club ( The service was painfully slow, but if you have to wait 20 minutes for a Bloody Mary and a cup of coffee, there are worse places to do it. In the airy, grown-up dining room with its big windows, white tablecloths, and dark wood, we chowed down on quiche and salad and ahi tuna poke, but the best thing we had was a selection of pastries from the bakery section of the menu—the churro-like beignets, with hot-chocolate dipping sauce, and the cinnamon roll, a special that day, were the highlights of the meal, hands down. Finally, sadly, it was time for the airport. My wallet was a little lighter on the return leg, but after a low-key weekend filled with good friends, good food, and good weather, my state of mind was a little lighter too.  


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