Rooms are on the small side; some of the decor feels outdated
The upper-middle-range Hotel Santa Fe and Spa offers 128 Southwestern-themed rooms and suites within walking distance of the Plaza. Along with its sister property, the Hacienda (located next door), the Hotel Santa Fe is the only hotel in town owned by Native Americans, and the Native theme is handsomely on display throughout -- you can even arrange a private teepee dinner through the hotel restaurant, Amaya. But the rooms could use some updating, and aren't as big as those in other comparable properties nearby.
A Native American-owned hotel with true Southwestern decor
Owned by the people of the Picuris Pueblo, the Hotel Santa Fe is the only Native American-owned hotel in town. The influence of their culture can be seen in the colorful decor throughout the public areas, starting with the lobby. Native rugs, pottery, and drums are all on display in the spacious lobby and lounge area. The red tile floors, Pueblo-style vigas in the ceiling, stained pine wood posts, and cream-colored walls create an Earthy backdrop to the relics. The Picuris Gift Shop in the lobby offers jewelry and crafts made by the tribe’s artists.
The pueblo decor is carried out in the rooms and suites, though some guests say the decor is a bit old and cheap-looking. If you want something a little nicer and larger, ask for one of the 35 rooms and suites at the Hacienda next door.
The heated pool and Jacuzzi can be found outside the lobby, beside towering cottonwood trees. A pair of doors to the lobby ensures security after hours by requiring a room key to enter, although it would be reassuring to have 24-hour staff on hand at the front desk.
In a quiet downtown neighborhood, just across from the Guadalupe Railyard and six blocks from the Plaza
The Hotel Santa Fe is located in a retail area six blocks from the Plaza. Galleries, shops, and restaurants are available in the immediate vicinity and right across the street is the Railyard, a shopping and dining district that also boasts the historic Santa Fe train depot.
Santa Fe means "Holy Faith" in Spanish and is home to about 70,000 people of varying cultural backgrounds including Hispanics, Native Americans, and Anglos. New Mexico's fourth-largest city is also the nation's highest capital and its oldest: It was founded in 1607. It sits at an elevation of 7,000 feet at the southern edge of the Rockies, in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, halfway between Taos and Albuquerque.
Hiking in summer and skiing in winter are great reasons to visit, but Santa Fe is also renowned for its local art. In addition to the many galleries at the Plaza and along Canyon Road, several museums including the New Mexico Museum of Art and the Georgia O'Keefe Museum (showcasing the painter's long relationship with New Mexico) celebrate Santa Fe's creative spirit.
10-minute drive from Santa Fe Municipal Airport
1.5-hour drive from Albuquerque International Airport
1-minute walk to the Railyard
15-minute walk to the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum
15-minute walk to the New Mexico Museum of Art
15-minute walk to the Plaza, the shopping and cultural center of town
15-minute walk to the Palace of the Governors, oldest continuously occupied public building in the nation
15-minute drive to Canyon Road, home to over 100 art galleries and studios
15-minute drive to Tesuque Pueblo, a Native American pueblo
15-minute drive to the Santa Fe Opera House
20-minute drive to Santa Fe Country Club (golf course)
30-minute drive to the El Rancho de las Golondrinas (a living history museum)
Decorated in handsome Native American theme, but TVs and decor are somewhat outdated
The Hotel Santa Fe’s 128 rooms feature Southwestern and Native themes with carved pine furniture, paintings, and patterned cushions. Baths are small but modern with tile-and-stone. However, the tube-style TVs and lack of iPod docks date the rooms to the 1990s, and an update would be welcome. If you want a little more sophistication and elegance, book a suite at the sister property next door, the Hacienda.
Pleasant Native American theme with pine wood, and native rugs, wall art, and pottery
Traditional rooms are on the small side -- and outdated with tube TVs and old decor
No coffeemakers (free coffee/tea by elevators each morning instead)