Thursday, February 24, 2011

Santa Fe, New Mexico:

Santa Fe, Santa Fe, Santa Fe!..... I've been to many places, but nowhere quite like this. Based only on my first impression, there's a spirit of mysticism and inspiration that I feel here. I found the city quite desirable.
After a brief flight from LA, I reached Santa Fe mid afternoon on Friday for a planned girls getaway of rest and relaxation. It was this time last year that the ladies took a brief trip to the desert for a much needed break. Unfortunately, or fortunately for me, I had just accepted the offer to join the Lady Gaga gig and had to miss out. Inspired to gather anually, I seized the opportunity to travel to meet them this time.

This years pick was Santa Fe, the small, big city in the desert. We treated ourselves to accommodations at the Encantado Spa & Resort, a quiet modern, luxury retreat in the desert hills. After arriving and settling in mid day, we enjoyed a casual meal and margaritas, all the while playing catch up, at the cozy hotel bar/lounge, Terra. It was the perfect grown up setting to relieve our stress and reconnect. If not for the overcast skies we might have enjoyed the slight sunset ducking under the snow capped mountains in the distance. After a few cocktails and long overdue chats, we retired to our room to rest up for whatever excitement was in store the next day.
Saturday morning we woke to clear skies, crisp air and the a positive mood. I grabbed breakfast with Debbie in the spacious tranquil dining room, choosing the healthy option before meeting Diane for yoga. It was a great way to get motivated for the day. Not having wheels of our own, we borrowed the E-class, drop top Mercedes, available to us through the hotel to cruise around town. Looking for somewhere satisfying to eat, our first stop, The Shed, was a priority. It was a cute, busy, casual and lively restaurant offering Mexican fare. The outside courtyard was full of tourist and locals, alike, waiting patiently for their name to be called, while being tempted to make purchases at the conveniently situated shops adjacent to the restaurant selling local art and jewels. Okay, I have to confess,.....I gave in to temptation, purchasing a resonably priced Mexican stenciled silver framed mirror that might be a nice addition to our bathroom at home.

After lunch we took our time walking around the small radius of downtown to see the sights--adobe style architecture and multitude of art galleries. I didn't know that Santa Fe was so rich in history and culture. I found our visit to the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum most inspiring. Learning more about her, I found new respect for her as an artist and appreciation for her as a trailblazer of her time.

Also impressive were the artists represented at the Lew Allen Modern Art Gallery that we visited, of which there was a boutique gallery on the grounds of our hotel compound. They represent varied well established modern artists and sculptors. I was quite taken by the work of Meridel Rubenstein, whose work in photo transperency spoke to me and that of Lucy Lyon, whose cast glass sculptures were like nothing I had ever quite seen. Before collecting for a meal, we drove to Canyon Road, known for its high end galleries and shops. We drove there expecting to find an art opening or two, but instead, discovered that everything was already closed.

Hungry and ready to eat, we found the The Pink Adobe. For the cost, the service and food did not live up to our expectation. It was very average and lacked presentation. The cuisine is a fusion of Cajun and Mexican. I found the menu limiting, forcing me to be cautious, preferring to order the spaghetti bolognese. It wasn't bad, but nothing to write home about. Unlike the food, the decor and ambience were delightful, vibrant with brightly colored walls and pillow cushioned built-in banquets, brass nail head and leather-backed chairs, existing trees with trunks exposed, undisturbed and masterfully inclusive in the construction of the space, adobe fireplaces, hand painted walls and decorative dim lighting. We finished our meal then drove 20 minutes back to our hotel. Once there we gravitated to the hotel bar for evening appetizers and drinks before turning in. It had been a full day.

Sunday, again, brought breakfast and morning yoga. The plan was to surrender and relax. We spent a few hours at the spa, enjoying the amenities--steam room, hot tub and tranquility room. Our day was subtle. After our late afternoon naps, we trekked across the road to the bar for a light dinner and cocktails. We laughed, talked and inspired one another, pow wowing over life goals and intentions for the year ahead, while munching on truffle fries and seasoned, toasted mixed nuts. It was good. Needless to say, there was a lot of eating and drinking happening over the weekend.

We rounded out the night in keeping with the established theme by watching the movie, The Bucket List. Sharing our thoughts and ideas, we were optimistic for the future seeing the glass half full, not, half empty.
Our long weekend was nearly over. We awoke leisurely on Monday, then packed and sorted our belongings before grabbing a light lunch in the dining room prior to our departure. It was fun to recap and discuss the value and meaning of our spontaneous getaway, celebrating the time we shared and being proud of how we made time for what was important by not letting life's demands get in the way. Going forward, I'll do my best to stay focused in THIS moment as I pursue the year ahead, and if I start to slip or fall short, I'll look back to this blog post to give me guidance and inspiration, while thinking about my dear friends Debbie and Diane and the great weekend we had. Until we meet again......

No comments:

Post a Comment