A Different City – Santa Fe, New Mexico

The capital city of New Mexico, Santa Fe is known as ‘The City Different’ and it truly is! It is higher (elevation 7,199 feet) and older than any capital city in the country (founded circa 1610). Even the way the slogan reads is different, like it’s out of order or something, or it has a European flair.  Other cities can claim to be be ‘different’ but Santa Fe is truly unique for many different reasons, as you might discover should you decide to visit for yourself.  I find that there are a many things that combine to perfect effect: art, food, culture, history, and architecture. So there really is something here for just about everyone.

70c4a8e9-49a9-443b-ae46-e64cec6f9f56
Photo by Kimberly Wallace 

So let’s look at the truly most unique aspect of life is Santa Fe, architecture.  There are a number of different styles of architecture in the city, but the most prominent is the Pueblo style with its earth colored adobe, flat roofs, exposed wooden beams, and kiva style fireplaces. From the second you arrive is Santa Fe and see these beautiful buildings, you know you’re somewhere different, almost like being transported back in time.  The unique buildings set the stage for what is truly a different city experience.  It isn’t just the older buildings that have this style, the Inn and Spa at Loretto (see image) is perhaps one of the finest examples of how the style of Old Santa Fe can still be achieved in a modern setting.

ed3368a5-b43d-4424-b508-1c3c67b62076
The Inn and Spa at Loretto

Santa Fe is a very walkable city and most strolls usually begin in the historic central Plaza. The Plaza has been an integral part of the city since around the year 1610 and has changed very little since.  Today, you can shop for authentic Native American art and handicrafts directly from the artists that make it.  You can find great deals on silver, turquoise, pottery, and carvings. The artists are required by law to have identification to be permitted to sell “Native American” art so you can buy with confidence knowing you’re getting authentic wares.  As you continue to stroll throughout the town, you can’t help but notice the sweet smell of piñon pine smoke.  Piñon is the most common tree/wood in the area and it gives off a sweet aroma that smells like incense, only better.

ca00d5ee-a560-4a5c-93f3-d2439185339f
Santa Fe Plaza

e4fbe67d-082c-4049-88c2-3849f31f5e7b

87c9bc7f-8919-4654-bb73-046f1fcf5aa2
Santa Fe Plaza at Night 
b72e5b20-6aeb-40e4-a1d8-409600fd7387
Even an alley looks beautiful 

All of that walking around is sure to work up an appetite, and you couldn’t find yourself in a better place to be hungry.  Our personal favorite is Tomasita’s (https://tomasitas.com) located in the Railyard District, a redevelopment site that has taken off in recent years with shops, breweries and even weekend farmers markets. Something unique and tasty at Tomasita’s is the roast beef burrito, which I have not seen on a menu anywhere outside of Santa Fe.  Another nice touch is the honey butter sopapillas that come with the meal, but it means that you’ll be tempted to eat dessert before you eat the main entree (I have always managed to eat my sopapilla first, burrito second). If you’re looking to eat before you start burning calories, try the Tecolote Cafe (www.tecolotecafe.com) a great breakfast stop, and be sure to get a homemade bread basket with your meal.

cbd3f0d5-6793-4a0d-8fd2-3d4590c8be3c

f16ce9a7-bda4-4657-a793-c4b30a1d0b75
Adobe Buildings

Santa Fe is not New York City, Chicago, or Los Angeles! Santa Fe is a place to go when you want to slow down a little, and want to experience new tastes, smells, cultures, and of course southwestern art and architecture.  It’s definitely the ‘City Different’.

606daca6-8124-411c-975b-30ed49ca67ed
San Miguel Mission

2 thoughts on “A Different City – Santa Fe, New Mexico

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s