Santa Fe, New Mexico

November 22, 2015  •  5 Comments

I always heard that Santa Fe was nice, but I never realized just how nice until we arrived there last week. Beautiful weather and scenery, friendly people, interesting culture and history, and great food… what more could we ask for?!

Our home for the first three nights was the Hilton Santa Fe Historic Plaza, using Hilton points for the stay. We were upgraded to an executive floor pool view room with free breakfast and 24-hour access to the executive lounge with complimentary beverages, snacks and hot/cold appetizers (thank you, Hilton Gold status). The Hilton is housed in a 300-year old hacienda in the historic district of Santa Fe, within easy walking distance to most of the cultural attractions, shops and restaurants in Santa Fe. I highly recommend staying here on your next visit to Santa Fe. If you do stay here, make sure to say hello to Perry Redondo at the front desk. Perry was awarded the highly-coveted TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence badge last year and serves as an excellent example of great customer service. He certainly was interested in making sure our stay was perfect, and I believe he treats all his customers the same way.

While in the historic plaza, we visited the Palace of the Governors, the New Mexico History Museum and the Museum of International Folk Art, although there are many other museums that would be worth visiting. The Georgia O’Keeffe Museum is very popular as well. The Palace of the Governors is the oldest continuously occupied public building in the United States, built by the Spanish as a government building in 1610. The oldest church in the United States is also in Santa Fe - the San Miguel Mission, which was built by the Tlaxcala Indians between 1610 and 1628. And speaking of churches, the Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi is quite an impressive site at the end of the plaza.

Our last three nights were spent at the Hilton Buffalo Thunder Resort north of Santa Fe, using this as a good location for day trips north and west. We were fortunate to be upgraded to a deluxe suite with two kiva fireplaces and a private balcony overlooking the pools (gotta love Hilton Honors). We spent more money in the casino than we planned, partially due to an unexpected snowstorm during our stay with little else to do but gamble or shop. From here, we visited Taos and the Taos Pueblo, the Rio Grande Gorge bridge, Bandelier National Park, and the Los Alamos National Lab. The cave dwellings and pueblo ruins in Bandelier were very cool to see, as was the scenery driving along the mountain roads from Santa Fe to Los Alamos. We also visited the Bradbury Science Museum in Los Alamos and learned more of the history of Los Alamos, the Manhattan project, and the story behind building the first atomic bomb.

In summary, Santa Fe is a city I would love to visit again in the future! Have you been there? If so, what are your favorite memories?

 


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