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Innkeeper's Blog


Tip of the Week

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Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell in Santa Fe

A rarely used venue (other than for the famous Santa Fe Flea Market), the old horse racetrack at The Downs, will be hosting Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell on Saturday, June 15, 2013. Emmylou Harris is one of America's most recognized singer-songwriters and musicians, having won 12 Grammys for her blend of country, folk and rock music. Crowell, himself a Grammy Award-winning musician, is a well-known country singer and songwriter who crosses over from mainstream to alternative country. While Crowell joined Emmylou Harris' Hot Band in 1975 as guitarist and harmony singer, the two have just released their first official collaboration, an album called Old Yellow Moon. The album features four songs written by Crowell, along with traditional country songs by Hank DeVito ('Hanging up My Heart'), Roger Miller ('Invitation to the Blues') and more. Songs from this album will be front and center on June 15.

The concert is scheduled to run from 7-10pm, with doors open at 6pm. The General Admission tickets are $70 for the Front Lawn, $40 for the Rear Lawn, and $10 for children 14 and under. Tickets may be purchased by calling 505.988.1234 or online at TicketsSantaFe.org.

Santa Fe Mother's Day Brunch Ideas

The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn is full this weekend, with many people taking advantage of our Mother's Day Spa & Lodging Special. Of course Mother's Day is often made complete with a Sunday Brunch, and a number of Santa Fe's top restaurants are featuring special menus for the occasion.

One of my top picks for brunch anytime of year is Santacafe, as they have a beautiful courtyard and a fantastic a la carte brunch menu. Some of their standouts include starters such as Crispy Calamari with 4 Lime Dipping Sauce, Shitake & Cactus Spring Rolls or their Shrimp & Spinach Dumplings. Choose from their extensive selection of main dish offerings, from a Southwestern version of Eggs Benedict to Mascarpone Stuffed French Toast with Fresh Strawberries to Green Chile Burgers with Rosemary Potato Chips and so much more! Weather permitting, you will want to reserve a table on the patio by calling 505.984.1788. They will be serving brunch from 10am-2:30pm.

Another favorite brunch spot is La Casa Sena, with one of the more beautiful garden patios in town. They will be serving Mother's Day Brunch from 11am-3pm, with a prix fixe, three-course menu priced at $28 per person or $12 for children under age 12. Start with a basket of fresh-baked breads, and then choose from entrees such as a Blue Crab Spinach Salad, Chorizo Omelette or Ranchero Eggs, a Pobalano Chile Relleno or Red Chile Crusted Pork Loin, among many other options. Leave room for dessert, which includes mouth-watering Blackberry Cake, Chocolate-Strawbery Pavlova or a Trio of Sorbets. Reservations are recommended - call them at 505.988.9232.

Both restaurants are located just a few blocks from the inn, making for an easy stroll.

Big Sale at Jackalope

On April 26, 27 and 28 Jackalope is offering 30% off all their pots, just in time for summer planting. Jackalope is the place to go in Santa Fe for pottery. At any given time of year they sell thousands of pots of all shapes and sizes, from tiny indoor pots to enormous outdoor pots. The sale extends to their greenhouse plants (15% off), with 10% off everything else in the store. Since Jackalope has limited options for plants, you may want to fill your new pots at Payne's Nurseries or Newman's Nursery. Alas, the beloved Santa Fe Greenhouses went under last year, after 29 years in business.

Jackalope is a Santa Fe institution: The store was founded in 1976 by Darby McQuade, selling Mexican pottery on the Plaza from the back of his pick-up. Since then the store has expanded tremendously. Jackalope now consists of three large warehouses on several acres of land, selling goods from Mexico, India, Bali, China, Egypt, Thailand and Africa. One warehouse is set up like a market, with folk art, Christmas ornaments, jewelry, clothes, masks and more being sold in little side-by-side stalls. Another warehouse is primarily dedicated to hand-made furniture, while the newest is devoted to such items as rugs, housewares, DVD's, candles and tableware.

One of my favorite things to do at Jackalope is to spend some time hanging out at the Praire Dog Village. Bring a bag of baby carrots to feed these adorable little critters, and you can easily pass an hour watching their interactions as they eat.

Shopping at Jackalope is an experience in and of itself. One can spend half a day just seeing all the merchandise, touring the extensive grounds, checking out the animal barn and prairie dog village, and getting a refreshment at their cafe. Please note that Jackalope can ship whatever you buy!

Jackalope
2820 Cerrillos Road
Santa Fe, NM 87507
505.471.8539

River Rafting Season Has Begun

Fear not dear outdoor enthusiasts of The Hacienda Nicholas! While the season has ended at the Santa Fe Ski Basin, now is the time to take advantage of the snow run-off and experience the thrill of whitewater rafting. My favorite river rafting company in the area is New Wave Rafting, which has been operating river tours since 1980. Located on the Rio Grande River between Santa Fe and Taos, they offer trips from the most mild to the most wild. Whether you are looking for a family outing with young children in tow, a peaceful trip down the river to take in the area's spectacular scenic beauty, or a thrilling ride of the Taos Box with lots of action, New Wave can accommodate.

Trips are offered every day of the week from March 28, 2013 through September 2, 2013, though the wilder rides generally end by July when much of the season's snowpack has melted away. New Wave has actually lowered their prices this year: you can book a two hour float for as little as $22, or a three day camping trip down the Chama for $448. Trips tend to run about $50 for a half day and up to $100 for a full day, and most include a delicious riverside picnic lunch.

You will definitely want to have hats and shoes that fasten securely, along with sunscreen and a water bottle, but New Wave provides all the rest. With so many options to choose from, you will surely find a trip that meets your needs and desires. Call New Wave directly at 800.984.1444 to make your reservations.

Tax Time Humor in Santa Fe

Tax time can be very stressful and devoid of humor, so I highly recommend guests plan to attend the Lensic Theater's production of Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo on April 15, 2013. Whether you are a lover of ballet or not, watching as this all-male drag dance company performs classical ballet's most beloved pieces in full traditional costume, complete with tiaras and pointe shoes, is guaranteed to provide a night of hilarity for all. The company's was founded 35 years ago with the mission to parody the conventions and cliches of classical ballet, which truly lend themselves to this sort of humor. The company's repertoire includes traditional ballets such as Swan Lake, Les Sylphides, Paquita, Balanchine's Stars & Stripes, the Nutcracker and more. The company's remarkable technique, brilliant acting skills and slapstick humor will have you laughing so hard you'll forget all about Uncle Sam's taxes.

Be sure to reserve your seats ahead of time, as this performance, brought to you by the Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, will inevitably sell out. Tickets may be booked online at TicketsSantaFe.org or by calling 505.988.1234. Ticket prices range from $25-$72.

Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo
Lensic Performing Arts Center
211 West San Francisco Street
Santa Fe, NM 87501
April 15, 2013 7:30pm

Beads, Beads, Beads...and More Beads!

Beaders will soon be gathering enthusiastically for the annual Santa Fe Bead Fest to buy from over 150 vendors, selling beads of every imaginable type and origin (including exotic beads from Africa and Asia), along with gems, tools and other jewelry making supplies. In addition is a wide array of workshops and beading demonstrations, catering to hobbyists, professional jewelers, and even absolute novices.

The workshops, all of which require advance registration, are suitable for all skill levels. Beginners can learn the basics of metalsmithing, for example, learning how to saw, file, and solder, all is one day. Another featured workshop appropriate for all levels is on the process of Keumboo, a technique for adding gold to jewelry designs. Other workshops teach everything from silversmithing to how to make tribal earrings, Dremel drilling techniques to making hinged treasure boxes. There is an impressive array of workshops - something for absolutely everyone.

The event runs from March 13 through March 17, 2013, and takes place primarily at the Santa Fe Convention Center, with workshops and demonstrations also taking place at the Santa Fe Hilton and The First Presbyterian Church. The booths are open from March 14-17, with Thursday's opening taking place from 5pm-9pm, Friday & Saturday hours from 10am-6pm, and Sunday's hours from 11am-5pm. One can purchase tickets online for just $12, which are good for all four days of the expo. The 4-day pass may be purchased at the door for $15, though there is also a link on the website for a $3 coupon to use at the door. Whether you are a professional jeweler or simply have a budding interest in the craft of beading, this festival has something for everyone.

4th Annual Santa Fe Restaurant Week

Santa Fe also boasts a wide array of highly-acclaimed restaurants: From Native American Indian to east Indian, French to New Mexican, African to Italian, Santa Fe has something for every palate. A great time of year to try out these fine restaurants is during the 4th Annual Santa Fe Restaurant Week, taking place from February 24-March 3, 2013.

All 49 participating restaurants will be offering specially-priced dinners (many also offer special lunch menus as well), some as low as $25 for a couple, and on up to $40/person for a serious culinary feast. My personal favorites of the high-end restaurants are The Compound (Contemporary American) and La Boca (Spanish Tapas), each offering a $40/person menu of delectable choices. Among the more ethnic and exotic options, my top picks are Jambo Cafe (African) and Shoko Cafe (Japanese).

In addition to the special dining deals, you can also take advantage of a plethora of cooking classes, demonstrations and tours. Learn to make "Gnocchi Like an Italian Grandmother" or "How to Make Fresh Pasta" from Chef Andrew Cooper of the Four Seasons Rancho Encantado. Sign up for the "Tour & Taste of New World Cuisine" offered at the Museum Hill Cafe in conjunction with the Santa Fe International Folk Art Museum. For those preferring a class centered on libations, check out "The History of Beer" being held at the Cowgirl BBQ.

Due to the popularity of this culinary event, advance reservations are highly recommended - they can be made by calling each participating restaurant directly, or finding them on Open Table. This the ideal time to dine at your favorite tried-and-true establishments, or to branch out and try something new and different.

Romantic Valentine's Celebration in Santa Fe

The Hacienda NIcholas Bed & Breakfast is the perfect place to wow your sweetheart this Valentine's Day, or any time of the year you might be inspired to rekindle your romance. Thick adobe walls, a warming fire in the kiva fireplace, and authentic southwestern style through and through, all create a truly romantic atmosphere.

Enhance the mood with a couples treatment at our Balinese-inspired Absolute Nirvana Spa, located across the street in the back garden of our sister inn, The Madeleine. They are offering a Valentine's Spa Special throughout the month of February. This couples treatment begins with a Master's Massage in a candlelit room as you are both drenched with warm oils permeated with rose and chocolate essence. Following your massages, slip into a hand-carved granite tub, filled with the petals of two dozen red roses, a fire burning at your feet, as you nibble on tropical fruits and homemade chocolate truffles.

After your blissful time in the spa, head out to one of Santa Fe's many fine restaurants. If your stay coincides with Valentine's Day itself, there are several restaurants offering dining specials. The Old House Restaurant is featuring a four-course 'Aphrodisiac Menu' which includes oysters, lobster tail, New York steak, fresh strawberries and chocolate. The price for this is a reasonable $119 per couple, or $149 if a wine pairing menu is chosen. Their Valentine's Day menu will be served from February 14-17. Reservations are highly recommended, and may be made by phoning 505.995.4530.

Santa Fe Opera 2013 Season

Every summer The Hacienda Nicholas fills up with opera lovers from across the country, many of whom have been staying with us for 15 years or more. The 2013 Santa Fe Opera summer season schedule is now posted, so you will want to plan your trip soon: the preferred seats and the best hotel rooms tend to sell fast.

This summer brings revivals of two very popular operas: Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro and Verdi's La Traviata. A real treat will be the world premiere of Oscar, by Theodore Morrison, based on the life of Oscar Wilde. This opera was co-commissioned and co-produced by The Santa Fe Opera and Opera Company of Philadelphia, and features David Daniels as Oscar Wilde. For operatic hilarity, plan to attend Offenbach's The Grand Duchess of Gerolstein, which has not been performed since 1979. This newly staged production will be performed on opening night, June 28, and features Susan Graham in the title role. Last but not least is Rossini's romantic La Donna del Lago, starring acclaimed mezzo soprano Joyce DiDonato as the mysterious lady of the lake.

Winter is hardly the time of year to be thinking of outdoor picnics, but you will want to plan a tailgate supper so as to take advantage of the spectacular sunset and mountain views available from the opera's parking lot. Stop by Whole Foods and choose from their extensive deli array, choose take-out from one of Santa Fe's many fine dining restaurants, or order a box meal directly from the Santa Fe Opera.

Tickets range from $30 (standing room only) to a whopping $943 for top tier orchestra seats. Serious opera devotees will want to plan their stays so as to enjoy all five operas back-to-back. This option is available from July 30-Augst 3, August 6-10 or August 13-17.

Tickets may be purchased online or by calling 800.280.4654.

Santa Fe Real Estate Market

As was the case in much of the country, our real estate market dropped in value by about 30%, though that tide has now turned. Inventory has dropped significantly from a year ago, and the median sales price for a Santa Fe home in the final quarter of 2012 was $266,184 - an increase of close to 30% - though there were fewer sales overall in that final quarter.

In addition, "Business Insider" anticipates Santa Fe's annualized expected growth in the real estate sector to be 8.9%, making it one of the fifteen best housing markets in the U.S. over the next five years. From the sounds of it, now is the time to buy in Santa Fe, before things heat up even more. The best values tend to be on the outskirts of town, and particularly in Eldorado, though the South Capitol is a good option for people wanting to be close to the Plaza area.

Santa Fe boasts a plethora of realtors, from large national agencies such as Sotheby's (call Katherine Blagden) and Coldwell Banker (ask fro Valerie Hasson) to highly reputed local agencies such as Barker Realty (go with John Hancock and Rebecca Holland), Prudential (Lisa Knouse) or Santa Fe Properties.

This is also a great time to furnish that new home in Santa Fe, as American Country Collection is offering every item in their showroom at 25% off. Located at 620 Cerrillos Road, the store features unique home furnishings, antiques, rugs and a wide assortment of upholstery and curtain fabrics.

A New Year - A New You

Winter is a quiet time at The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn, making it an ideal time to treat yourself to a quiet time of renewal and rejuvenation. Start the day in quiet meditation and journaling, or perhaps an early morning yoga class at Yoga Source or one of Santa Fe's newest yoga studios, Dragon Rising. After a healthy breakfast of fruits, yogurt and homemade granola (or indulge in Blue Corn Waffles, Blueberry Almond Stuffed French Toast, or a Southwestern Breakfast Enchilada), enjoy New Mexico's blue skies and sun with a walk up Canyon Road or a hike in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

Then give yourself the ultimate New Year's gift of a spa renewal afternoon. Absolute Nirvana, our Balinese-inspired garden spa, is currently offering a Detoxification and Rejuvenation Special to help you start the new year at your best. Begin with a relaxing massage, followed by an exfoliating scrub of French White Clay & Sea Salt, and ending with a mask of Golden Belizian Seaweed. This treatment, using only natural and organic ingredients, is specially formulated to rid the body of toxins and stress. A new you will emerge, feeling energized, purified and radiant.

Santa Fe offers a number of healthy dinner options for those opting for a visit centered on purification of body and soul. Body Cafe offers a wide array of vegan, gluten-free and raw entrees, including some delicious raw organic truffles. Another choice is Vinaigrette, featuring a selection of salads, soups and sandwiches, made using organic greens and vegetables from their own farm in Nambe, NM.

Things to Do in Santa Fe for Chocolate Lovers

The Absolute Nirvana Spa, located just across the street from The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn, offers a couple of decadent chocolate-based spa treatments. Guests can indulge in the two hour Chocolate Decadence, for example, which includes a head to toe massage with warm oils, chocolate/rose aromatherapy, a scrub of raw organic cacao and sugar, a mask of yogurt and honey, and ending with a luxuriating soak in a tub filled with the petals of a dozen roses.

Chocolate lovers will also enjoy the new exhibition at Santa Fe's International Folk Art Museum, titled New World Cuisine: The Histories of Chocolate, Mate y Mas. This thoughtfully curated show highlights the earliest cultural mixing that took place in the Americas through cuisine, as foods originating from Europe and the New World were combined as a result of the travels of the Spanish Manila Galleons. Specifically showcased in this exhibition are objects and information related to the history of chocolate and mate: their origins, how they came to be so popular, and objects related to their harvesting, preparation and service. The exhibit will run through January 5, 2014.

This immersion into the history of chocolate, including a stop at the tantalizing 'scent station', you will no doubt leave you salivating for a taste of this elixir of the Gods. Satiate your desires with a visit to Kakawa, located near The Hacienda Nicholas, at 1050 Paseo de Peralta. Kakawa is best known for their assortment of authentic Pre-Columbian, Mesoamerican, Mayan, and Aztec drinking chocolates, as well as 1600's European, Colonial American and Colonial Mexican drinking chocolates. They also feature an ever-changing selection of exquisite and unique truffles, caramels and baked goods, working only in small batches, using only fresh and seasonal ingredients.

Celebrating the Holidays with Asian Flair

Our stockings are hung on the mantlepieces of The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast, and garlands wrap the staircases and entry, in preparation for a full house of guests this Christmas. The Plaza twinkles with thousands of colored lights on every tree, and Santa Fe residents are busy making truckloads of farolitos to line their walkways and rooftops on Christmas Eve. Along with the beautiful holiday decorations are a variety of holiday concerts given by the Santa Fe Desert Chorale, Santa Fe Pro Musica and the Santa Fe Symphony.

For those of you looking for an out of the ordinary activity during the holiday season, check out The Golden Dragon Acrobats at the Lensic Performing Arts Center. Their production of "Cirque Ziva" is having its premiere performance in Santa Fe, and will continue on for another six months of touring. The troupe continues a tradition going back 25 centuries, and combines acrobatic feats, traditional Asian dance, and stunning costumes with both ancient and contemporary music. The Golden Dragon Acrobats are considered to be the top Chinese acrobat touring company of the day, and will leave you spellbound with their fast-paced and technologically thrilling spectacle - an exciting show for the whole family to enjoy.

Performances are scheduled for December 20, 21 and 22 from 7-9pm, with a matinee performance on December 22 at 1pm. Ticket price range from $20-$35 and may be purchased online or by phone at 505.988.1234.

Fantastic Flamenco for the Holidays

Along with visiting the museums, galleries and archeological sights of Santa Fe, guests of The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn are taking advantage of the city's many unique shops to buy some memorable Christmas gifts. Make Christmas shopping an even more wonderful event by combining it with an evening of flamenco dancing and fantastic Spanish cuisine.

On Sunday, December 9th, the Juan Siddi Flamenco Theatre Company is hosting its 4th annual Gala Event, hosted by Ali Macgraw, and featuring world-class flamenco dance, DJ Oona spinning salsa music, as well as paella and tapas by Santa Fe's top Spanish Restaurant, La Boca. A great opportunity to purchase some Christmas gifts at great prices is the silent auction; bid on original works of art and crafts from the city's many talented artists.

The event will take place from 4-8pm at the St. Francis Auditorium. Tickets are $30 and may be purchased at the Lensic Box Office or by phoning 505.988.1234. Proceeds for this fabulous event go to the Heart Gallery Foundation which supports Santa Fe's Foster Youth, as well as to the NM Dance Coalition and the Juan Siddi Flamenco Theatre Company.

Exciting New Cooking School in Santa Fe!

Guests of The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn have been attending classes of the Santa Fe School of Cooking for over 20 years, delighting in their array of classes featuring the cuisine of Northern New Mexico. There is now a new cooking school in town - The Santa Fe Culinary Academy - which focuses on a broader range of cuisine. The school has an extensive array of classes every month, geared to the season. Classes and workshops this December cover everything from Holiday Tamales to Gluten Free Holiday Baking, and include classes on Thai Curry, a Vegetarian Holiday Dinner and a Soup Workshop. These community classes range in length from a few hours to several days, and are taught by the school's professional chef instructors, local cookbook authors, visiting 'celebrities' and members of the local Santa Fe restaurant community.

For those seeking to embark on a restaurant career, the school also offers a 50 week Professional Program in their new state of the art, 5000-square foot facility.

We wish this new school much success, as they are clearing filling a need for locals and visitors alike who wish to go beyond southwestern cuisine.

The Santa Fe Culinary Academy is located near the inn, at 112 W. San Francisco Street, Suite 500. Check out their varied schedule online, or call 505.983.7445 for more information.

Thanksgiving Dinner in Santa Fe

Guests of The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn this Thanksgiving will be pleased to know there are many choices among Santa Fe's restaurants for a traditional turkey dinner or a more esoteric meal.

Just one block from the inn is Fuego Restaurant at La Posada, with seatings from 3-4pm and again from 5:30-7:30pm. Their five course menu, with selections of appetizers, soups, salads, a traditional turkey dinner entree and delicious dessert choices is $65/person. Fuego is doing something wonderful this year: with every reservation of four or more, they will donate a turkey to The New Mexico Food Depot. For reservations call 505.954.9670.

Another of my favorite restaurants, The Compound, is serving Thanksgiving from their historic adobe on Canyon Road. Along with the beautiful and tranquil setting, they are offering a prix fixe menu including starters such as Sea Scallops, Shrimp and Grits and Carmelized Pear Salad, followed by main course choices of Roasted Organic Turkey with all the trimmings, Natural Shetland Scottish Salmon or Wild Mushrooms and Organic Stone Ground Polenta. Dessert Choices include Bittersweet Chocolate Torte, Maple Pecan Pie and more. The price is $75/person, and $25 for a child's entree plus dessert. To reserve your dinner at The Compound please call 505.982.4353.

My third recommendation is Restaurant Martin, a family run business featuring deliciously prepared food in an atmosphere of understated elegance. Their a la carte Thanksgiving menu begins with appetizers such as Leaves of Ahi Tuna, Lobster Bisque and a Semi Boneless Quail, followed by such entree selections as an Organic Turkey platter with Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Stuffing and Gravy, a Duo of Black Angus Beef or a Vegetarian Tasting Plate. End your meal at Restaurant Martin with one of the following Dessert offerings: Carmelized Pumpkin Tart, Textures of Apple (an assortment of apple-based desserts) or a Frozen Chocolate Ganache. Call to reserve at 505.820.0919.

Handel's Messiah in Santa Fe

The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn hosts music lovers all summer long, as visitors flock to Santa Fe for the renowned Santa Fe Opera, Chamber Music and Desert Chorale. There is also a solid winter season of classical holiday music, kicking off this year with The Santa Fe Symphony's performances of Handel's Messiah. Treat yourselves to the glorious voices of The Symphony Chorus on Sunday, November 18th, at 4pm, in the beautiful and historic Lensic Performing Arts Center. Enrich your experience by attending the complimentary preview talk at 3pm.

Ticket prices range from $20-$70 (half price for children ages 6-14 when adult tickets are also purchased) and may be procured online or by phoning the Lensic at 505.988.1234.

Sunday, November 18, 2012
Lensic Performing Arts Center
211 West San Francisco Street
Santa Fe, NM

Santa Fe Photographic Workshops

We are very fortunate to have an excellent school of photography here in Santa Fe, and The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn is host to both aspiring and professional photographers who flock here to attend the Santa Fe Photographic Workshops. Please note that we offer a 10% discount to all attendees of the Santa Fe Photographic Workshops.

Classes vary in their duration, from a few days in various Santa Fe locations to a two-week educational program in Cuba or a trip to Nepal. The school attracts master-level photographers to teach an array of classes, from those focusing on technical skills to those devoted exclusively to perfecting portrait or landscape photography.

While some classes require advanced knowledge and experience, there are also plenty of classes offered for the novice photographer. The mission of the school is not only to teach photographic skills, but also to help participants tap more deeply into their creative selves.

You will be amazed at the range of scope of the classes offered, and adding a workshop to your Santa Fe will only deepen the cultural experience of the city.

Santa Fe Art Walk in the Railyard

The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn is ideally situated for art lovers, as we are just three blocks from the Santa Fe Galleries of Canyon Road. Another area of town known for its concentration of art galleries is the Railyard, where the bulk of Santa Fe's contemporary art can be found.

The last Friday of every month, this part of town comes alive in the evening hours. Ten exciting contemporary art galleries, along with SITE Santa Fe, open their doors for an Art Walk from 5-7pm.

These galleries, featuring the best in international contemporary work, include such well known spaces as: James Kelly Contemporary, Tai Gallery, William Segal Gallery and Charlotte Jackson Fine Art. Stroll through the award-winning landscaped gardens of the Railyard before the temperature drops, and then plan on spending the full two hours perusing these warehouse type galleries - a departure from the typical adobe structures of Santa Fe!

Upcoming dates are Friday, October 26 and Friday, November 30, 2012.

Santa Fe Wine & Chile Fiesta

Santa Fe has its share of fiestas and notable events throughout the year, most within walking distance of The Hacienda Nicholas. One of the most enjoyable and highly-anticipated is the Wine & Chile Fiesta, where walking distance might well be a very welcome attribute. The five day celebration of food and wine runs from September 27-30, 2012. Due to its increasing popularity, I highly recommend purchasing your tickets online as soon as possible, as most events sell out in advance.

The annual event brings 75 of Santa Fe's most notable restaurants (La Boca, The Compound, Santacafe and Restaurant Martin are some of my favorites) together with 100 national and international wineries. In addition to food and wine tastings on both a large and small scale (a tour of Georgia O'Keeffe's home in Abique followed by lunch at Tomme is a top pick), are demonstrations by some of the country's top chefs (Chef John Rivera Sedler - named "Chef of the Year 2011" by Equire Magazine, among other national food celebrities), food-oriented walking tours, and a selection of wine seminars.

The highlight of this extravaganza is the Grand Tasting, taking place on September 29th at the Santa Fe Opera, which includes all participants of the fiesta under huge white tents. Imagine sampling the best food of Santa Fe together with wines from New Mexico to Mexico, Chile to France, while enjoying the opera's stunning views of New Mexico landscapes. The cost of the event is $150 per person, and worth every dollar.

The weekend culminates with the Gruet Golf Classic at the Towa Golf Course, just 15 minutes from town. Every third hole features one of the Gruet Winery's delicious sparkling wines paired with food from a different Santa Fe restaurant. Golf never tasted so fine!

Santa Fe Fiestas!

This next weekend brings the Annual Fiesta de Santa Fe - now a full week of cultural and religious events in celebration of the reoccupation of the Spanish Colonists, led by Don Diego De Vargas, in 1692. The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn is conveniently located in the heart of the action, so guests can easily participate in all events without the hassle of driving through traffic and searching for parking spaces.

Activities run the gamut from religious events and parades to the crowning of the Fiesta King and Queen, to mariachi music, Spanish dancing, arts & crafts, and traditional regional foods. Best to check out the schedule online to figure out what you want to experience during Fiesta week.

My favorite event of the weekend the beloved Pet Parade, scheduled for Saturday, September 8, from 9am - 10:45am. Guests can simply walk one block to the corner of Paseo de Peralta and Marcy Street to watch the beginning of this fabulous parade, which consists of over 1000 children and their pets, all dressed up in a variety of costumes. The parade, which got its start in 1920, gives children a chance to show off a range of family pets: from dogs, cats and rabbits to the more unusual lamas, chickens, goats, turtles and more. The creativity of the costumes is astounding. You might see anything from mini Zozobras to zebra-painted kittens, guinea pig pirates to ghoulish ghosts. The Pet Parade is truly a delight for viewers of all ages.

7th Annual New Mexico Jazz Festival

Just a few blocks from The Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn are the two Santa Fe Venues for the upcoming New Mexico Jazz Festival, now in its 7th year. From July 13 through July 29, both local and international jazz artists and masters will be performing at the Santa Fe Plaza's bandstand and the Lensic Performing Arts Center.

The Lensic will feature such jazz greats as Regina Carter's Reverse Thread on July 19, Allen Toussaint and the Dirty Dozen Brass Band on July 22, NEA Jazz Master Sheila Jordan and Dianne Reeves on July 27, and NEA Jazz Master Jon Hendricks and Kurt Elling on July 28th. These performances begin at 7:30, with ticket prices ranging from FREE to $60, depending on the performance and seats chosen.

Local favorite Busy McCarroll and The Ambassadors of Pleasure will perform on the Santa Plaza on July 17th from 6-9 pm. This is a FREE and all ages performance.

You may also enjoy many other jazz legends in Albuquerque during this two week period.

Tickets for all events may be purchased online at www.ticketssantafe.org or by phoning 505.988.1234 or 505.268.0044.

The Taos Solar Music Festival

Taos, NM is a very popular day trip for guests of the Hacienda Nicholas Bed & Breakfast Inn, who go to visit the famed Taos Pueblo, see the spectacular Rio Grande Gorge, and visit such fine museums as the Millicent Rogers Museum and the Harwood Museum.

Another reason to the one hour drive to Taos is the annual Taos Solar Music Festival, now in its 14th year. This summer's festival is scheduled to take place on June 30 and July 1 at Kit Carson Park, in downtown Taos. Music lovers of all ages will be treated to such noted performers as Lyle Lovett, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Los Lobos, and more. Each days' events begin in the early afternoon, with the headliner bands (Lyle Lovett on Saturday, June 30 at 7:30pm and Michael Franti on Sunday, July 1 at 7pm) finishing up the day. Be advised to be prepared for a day in the sun, with hats, sunscreen and refillable water bottles. The show will go on whether rain or shine, so you will want to be prepared for stormy weather as well as descending temperatures as the sun sets. For added comfort, bring lawn chairs or blankets.

Visitors are not permitted to bring their own food or drinks, but there will be beverages, including beer and wine, along with a variety of foods available for purchase once inside the gates. Please keep the Taos Solar Music Festival a fun and safe event for all: please bring no illegal drugs, alcohol, firearms, fireworks, glass or pets.

Kids under 12 are admitted Free.
One Day Pass is $51, Two Day Pass is $91.

2012 Santa Fe Indian Market

The Santa Fe Indian Market, now in its 91st year, is the most prestigious market and showcase for Native American artwork in the world. Santa Fe and the surrounding towns are packed to the rafters with visitors from around the globe. Because of its proximity to the Plaza, where the market takes place, many of our guests will book up to five years in advance for this popular event.

This year's market, taking place on August 18 and 19, will feature the Native American arts of pottery, painting, sculpture, jewelry, carving, textiles, bead work, baskets, drums and more of over 1,000 Native American artists from across the U.S. and Canada. The work of this juried show ranges from museum-quality to collectible-quality to souvenir-type art, and all pieces are guaranteed to adhere to authentic and traditional methods of production.

In addition to the market itself, visitors are treated to traditional Native American music, dance and foods, as well as film, fashion and literature that reflect traditional and contemporary Native American culture.

Due to the popularity of this event (over 100,000 visitors each year) you will want to reserve your lodging and restaurant meals as soon as possible. Collectors often gather in front of the booths of their favorite artist in the wee hours of the morning to snatch up the best pieces, but for the less serious collector, there are plenty of great pieces to be had all weekend long.

Free Summer Concerts & Movies at The Railyard

The Railyard, home of the highly-acclaimed Santa Fe Farmer's Market, has been a popular destination for our guests for many years. This summer The Railyard is home to a number of free concerts by big-name artists, as well as a series of free movies.

Kicking off the season on Saturday, June 2, is the legendary rock 'n roll band, the Bo Deans. Then on Wednesday, June 4 the Railyard presents FUN., an alternative rock band best known for its Number One hit single "We Are Young". Don't miss Rob Schneider on July 14, followed by Shannon McNally on August 12.

June 1 brought the beginning of the Free Movie Series at The Railyard with "Rango". Other free summer movies include "The Princess Bride", "Austin Powers", "City Slickers", "Babe" and "The Bad News Bears".

Check out the full schedule online. Summer in Santa Fe has never been so FUN.
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