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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.

Flamenco to Warm up a Cold Winter's Night

Santa Fe has been experiencing some colder than normal temperatures this January, but just a few blocks from the Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals, the Flamenco en Fuego evening will warm up the coldest of nights. Come in out of the cold for this Latin Dance Performance and three course dinner being offered up at Fuego, the high end dining establishment at La Posada Resort & Spa. Performing this evening will be Ballet en Fuego, one of the Southwest's top dance troupes, known for their proficiency in Mexican, Spanish and Latin dance, as well as their vibrant costumes.

Executive Chef Carmen Rodriguez, voted the New Mexico Chef of the Year in 2012, will be serving up a three course dinner as the dancer's perform. Selections from the first course include a choice of Ensalada Nido de Pajaro or Thai Coconut Horchata Soup. The second course offerings include Salmon en Papa with Red Chile Honey Braised Chard and Green Chile Hollandaise or Enchilada Madre Santa or Puerco con Hongo. Finish up your meal with Nana's Chocolate Mousse.

The price is $48 per person. with two seatings available: 5:30pm and 7:30pm.
For reservations call 505.954.9670 or reserve online at OpenTable.com.

La Posada
330 East Palace Avenue (just one block from the inn)
Santa Fe, NM

Sales Galore in Santa Fe

Besides touring Santa Fe's galleries, archeological sites and outdoor wonders, guests of The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals love to explore the city's wide array of unique shops. January is a particularly fortuitous time for such exploration, as many of our finest stores are offering exceptional sales.

Origins, a boutique at 135 San Francisco Street, features gorgeous jewelry, exotic clothing, textiles, decor and furnishings from around the world. Going into Origins is like visiting a museum where everything is for sale, and with every item in the store on sale, this is a great time to visit.

My favorite shoe store, Sanbusco Center's On Your Feet, has an assortment of winter shoes and boots on sale, at 20-40% off. The store is known for its focus on stylish yet comfortable footwear - you will not find any stilettos at On Your Feet! They stock lines such as Dansko and Merrell, ideal for navigating Santa Fe's famously uneven sidewalks.

Be sure to include a stop at Design Warehouse in your shopping expedition. This spacious store, located at 101 West Marcy Street, is full of contemporary home decor and furniture for those wishing to decorate with a sense of adventure and playfulness.

These are just a few of the many shops offering special pricing during the month of January. There are deals to be had at most every establishment, as this is a particularly show time of year in Santa Fe, and room must be made for incoming merchandise. Happy shopping!

Celebrating the Holidays with Asian Flair

Our stockings are hung on the mantlepieces of The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals, wreaths hang from every door, 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.

Santa Fe's Magical Christmas Eve Farolito Walk

The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals are perfectly situated in the midst of Santa Fe's historic east side, allowing guests to easily walk to the Plaza and Canyon Road. This location is particularly ideal on Christmas Eve, when Canyon road and the surrounding residential neighborhood are transformed into a magical fairyland during the annual Farolito Walk. Adobe walls and rooftops are lined with actual farolitos - small brown paper bags illuminated from within by a small candle - as opposed to the pervasive plastic "bagolitos" that appear right around Thanksgiving! On every block you will also see luminarias, small bonfires where people gather to chat and sing Christmas carols while warming up.

I personally prefer doing the walk at about 10:30-11pm, when the crowds have dispersed and one can walk along quiet streets illuminated by the soft glow of thousands of flickering candles. I also recommend venturing off Canyon Road itself, and exploring some of the little alleys and side streets of the neighborhood. Being in a less-traveled area lends to the mystical nature of the evening even during the height of the walk.

Lastly, if you are heading out for dinner from your vacation rental, you will want to choose a place within walking distance. Traffic is exceedingly heavy in the neighborhood on Christmas Eve, as the farolito walk is attracts locals and visitors alike who drive into town from miles around. Check out Mucho Gusto, La Boca, Il Piatto or The Shed, and make your reservations early!

Fantastic Night of Flamenco in Santa Fe!

Along with visiting the museums, galleries and archeological sights of Santa Fe, guests of The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals 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.

Christmas/New Year's Music in Santa Fe

The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals are decorated for the Christmas holidays, as is much of the rest of Santa Fe. Adobe walls are lined with farolitos, and the Plaza is festooned with garlands and magical lights. Adding to the holiday spirit are a number of concerts presented by the renowned Santa Fe Desert Chorale, running from December 14 through December 31, 2012.

The Desert Chorale, famous for its glorious and inspiring voices, is a favorite of both locals and returning visitors. My favorite is the "Carols and Lullabies" concert in the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis. The cathedral itself if beautifully decorated for the Christmas holidays, and the program features traditional and more contemporary carols from around the world, from Ave Maria to Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, and closing with Silent Night. These concerts are scheduled for December 14, 18, 20, 21 and 22 at 8pm. Tickets run from $15-$65.

For those of you who like to sing along, the Desert Chorale offers "The Big Holiday Sing", which combines the voices of the Desert Chorale with the New Mexico Concern Choir and the Rio Grande Youth Chorale. This program, perfect for the whole family, focuses on favorite carols and popular music of the season. This performance, surely the largest choral gathering in New Mexico, takes places on December 15 at 2pm at Santa Fe's Cristo Rey Church. Tickets are $20 and $25, and Free for children five and under.

The Desert Chorale will also welcome the New Year with their "Toast to the New Year" on December 28, 29, 30 and 31 at the famous Loretto Chapel. This concert, beginning at 8pm, will feature colonial hymns, Sephardic folk songs, and French melodies. The evening ends with the Chorale's beautiful rendition of Auld Lang Syne. Ticket prices range from $30-$45.

Tickets for these magnificent concerts may be purchased at www.ticketssantafe.org.

Thanksgiving Dinner in Santa Fe

Guests of the Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals 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.

A short walk from any of the casitas 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.

Thanksgiving in Santa Fe

Treat yourself to a leisurely Thanksgiving in Santa Fe this year while taking advantage of our 25% off lodging special. Enjoy glorious blue sky and sun by day, then cool mountain air as night falls and finds you relaxing in front of a blazing fire, or snuggled in your cozy bed of feather and down.

In honor of the season, our Absolute Nirvana Spa has a selection of decadent Pumpkin Spa Specials designed to exfoliate and nourish dry winter skin while you savor the heavenly aromas of the holiday. Indulge in a relaxing massage followed by a pumpkin body mask and scrub - restore your skin's natural healthy glow with an exfoliating scrub of brown sugar and cinnamon, followed by a nourishing mask of warm pumpkin puree, buttermilk, honey and cloves. This one and a half hour Pumpkin Delight is just $165.

Another option is the Delicious Pumpkin Facial, using Naturopathica's Pumpkin Enzyme Peel to increase collagen production, leaving the skin firm and radiant, with increased elasticity. The one hour treatment is priced at $105, but if you choose to combine both of these yummy treatments, you will get 2.5 hours of Pumpkin Bliss for just $250.

Make it a memorable Thanksgiving this year, and start the holiday season feeling relaxed and rejuvenated.

Handel's Messiah in Santa Fe

The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals host 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

Halloween Fun in Santa Fe

Guests of the Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals looking for fun things to do this Halloween will want to check out the Ghost Tour of Madrid, taking place for the first time ever on October 31, 2012. Walk through the town of Madrid with Madrid historian and long time resident Lilly Whiteswan as she recounts spooky tales of the town and its past residents, and then plan on spending the evening at the Mine Shaft Tavern - the location for the movie "Wild Hogs" as well as the most haunted place in Madrid. The tavern takes Halloween very seriously, going all out with decorations and an adult costume contest. Spend the evening celebrating Halloween while eating one of their famous green chile cheeseburgers and dancing to the music of Anthony Leon and the Chain, an alternative country music band. Halloween in Madrid is definitely not just for kids!

Ghost Tour and spooky story-telling will take place from 5-7pm - $10.
Purchase tickets online or by phone 505.438.3780.

Dinner/live music at the Mine Shaft - $10 cover.
Dinner served at the Mine Shaft until 9pm.
Costume Contest 9-10pm.

Mine Shaft Tavern
2846 Hwy 14
Madrid, NM
505.473.0743

Santa Fe Art Walk in the Railyard District

The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals are ideally situated for art lovers, as we are just a few 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 Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals. 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!

Fiesta de Santa Fe

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 Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals are 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 a few blocks to the corner of Paseo de Peralta and Palace Avenue 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.

Santa Fe Opera 2012 Season

Every summer The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals host opera lovers who come from far and wide to enjoy the world-famous Santa Fe Opera. The 2012 season, running from June 29 through August 25, features five operas, from classics such as Tosca to a world premiere of the new staging of Rossini's Maometto II.

This opera house is a remarkable adobe structure nestled in the mountains just north of Santa Fe, with majestic views of New Mexico landscape providing a dramatic and memorable setting. The world's most talented young singers, conductors, directors and designers are invited to participate in what is considered one of the most prestigious opera festivals around.

I recommend arriving early for two reasons. First of all, the scenery is not to be missed, and many people choose to tailgate (some make this a formal affair, with fine china, crystal, candles and very elaborate cuisine) so as to enjoy the surroundings by daylight. Enhance your opera experience by attending one of the Prelude Talks, given twice before most performances. These informative talks are free for ticket-holders and are given both two hours before the performance and one hour prior. Consider attending the earlier of the two Prelude Talks, then having your tailgate dinner, and then off to your night at the opera.

My parking tip is to park close to the exit, if you are able to walk the distance with ease. Otherwise you are stuck in a very long line of traffic easing its way back onto the highway.

Tickets may be purchased by calling 505.986.5900 or 800.280.4654 or online at santafeopera.org. There is a wealth of information online, including schedule, pricing and seating.

2012 SANTA FE OPERA SEASON

-Tosca: At 8:30 p.m. June 29 and July 4, 7, 13 and 20 and at 8:30 p.m. July 30, Aug. 8, 11, 15, 18, 21 and 24.

-The Pearl Fishers: At 8:30 p.m. June 30, July 6 and 11 and at 8 p.m. July 31 and Aug. 10, 13, 22 and 25.

-Maometto II: At 8:30 p.m. July 14, 18 and 27 and at 8 p.m. Aug. 2, 7 and 16

-King Roger: At 8:30 p.m. July 21 and 25 and at 8 p.m. Aug. 3, 9 and 14

-Arabella: At 8:30 p.m. July 28 and at 8 p.m. Aug. 1, 6, 17 and 23

Mother's Day in Santa Fe

The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals have a great Mother's Day Special running the entire month of May. The three night package, starting at $589, includes a heavenly one hour massage or facial at our Absolute Nirvana Spa, a dozen red roses, and the gift of a luxurious spa robe.

Of course Mother's Day also means a special brunch to honor the mother in your life, and many of Santa Fe's best restaurants offer special Mother's Day menus. One of my favorite brunch spots in town is Santacafe, with its lovely garden patio providing the ideal setting for Mother's Day. Another great Mother's Day Brunch option in Santa Fe, also with a spacious garden patio, is Restaurant Martin.

Both restaurants will be quite busy for Mother's Day, so you will want to call ahead to make reservations.

Easter Brunch in Santa Fe

Spring has sprung in Santa Fe, with blossoms blooming and birds swinging sweetly. This is one of the most glorious times of year to be in Santa Fe. Guests have begun asking about Easter Dinner options, and there are several restaurants doing special Easter Brunch Menus.

Inn of the Anazsazi, just a few blocks from the inn, is offering an Easter Brunch Menu from 11am-2:30pm at $40 person. The menu looks pretty interesting. with lots of southwestern-oriented dishes, offering a change from the traditional lamb, potatoes and asparagus. Consider their Signature Homemade Tortilla Soup, Spanish Benedict (Eggs Benedict with Roioja Chorizo Chipotle Hollandaise), or Huevos Rancheros. Reservations may be made by calling 505.988.3236.

Another nearby Easter meal is at Fuego, just one block from the inn. Theirs is a more traditional menu, with appetizers such as Spring Pea Soup, Melon Coupe or Butter Lettuce Salad. Entrees include Roasted Chicken, Eggs Benedict, Crab Cakes and Eggs, Seared Salmon or Oven Roasted Prime Rib. In addition to the Baker's Pasty Stand (yum yum!) is a dessert of Strawberries with Devonshire Cream. This meal will be served from 11am-3pm at a cost of $40/person. Please call 505.984.9670 for reservations.

Also serving on Easter is one of my favorite Santa Fe Restaurants: SantaCafe. Though they have not posted a special Easter menu, the brunch at SantaCafe is fantastic! I always get their Crispy Calamari with Lime Dipping Sauce to start, and highly recommend that. Choose from entrees such as Mascarpone Stuffed French Toast, Grilled Ruby Red Trout with Sweet Corn Risotto, Baby Spinach Salad with Seared Tuna or Quiche with Gruyere Cheese. For dessert is a killer Warm Upside Down Chocolate Cake with Vanilla Ice Cream, Tahitian Vanilla Creme Brulee and so much more! In addition, they have a lovely garden patio which is one of the nicest outdoor eating spaces in Santa Fe. To book your brunch at SantaCafe, please call 505.984.1788.

Re-Visit History at Lamy's Legal Tender

The Madeleine Inn, sister inn of Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals, was built by railroad tycoon George Cuyler Preston in 1886. Guests marvel over the intricate woodwork, stained glass and ornate fireplaces throughout the house. For another peek into the area's history, take a drive out to Lamy, 18 miles south of Santa Fe. On the way enjoy glorious open vistas which will free your soul.

Lamy came into existence with the arrival of the railroad, and the station is still operating today with daily Amtrak service. The Lamy station is also a destination of the Santa Fe Southern Railway, which offers rides on vintage rail cars dating from the 1920's between Santa Fe and Lamy. This ride includes a short stop in Lamy, but does not allow enough time to actually sit and enjoy a meal at Lamy's Historic Legal Tender.

It is easy to step back in time when walking into the newly re-opened Legal Tender Restaurant, which first opened in 1818 to provide respite to weary travelers in the form of libations, lively poker games and dancing "ladies". Have a drink yourself at the beautiful old bar, hang out in the beautifully restored El Capitan Poker Room, and enjoy a meal from the extensive menu featuring steaks, burgers, pulled pork, and plenty of vegetarian options. Kick up your heels and dance to country music every Friday and Saturday night, free of charge.

Legal Tender
151 Old Lamy Trail, NM
505.466.1650
Open Friday & Saturday, noon-9pm

Valentine's Dinner Specials in Santa Fe

Santa Fe offers plenty of romantic dining options this Valentine's for guests at Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals. Be sure to book ahead, as Valentine's Day Dinners tend to be very popular!

Nothing says romance more than traditional French cuisine, which is served up with style at 315 Restaurant and Wine Bar. Their three course Valentine's prix-fixe dinner is $50/person, and includes such favorites as: French Onion Soup, Steak Frites, Grilled Salmon, and Black Mussels. Save room for Chocolate Mousse, Creme Brulee, or other tantalizing selections. Serving authentic French cuisine in an intimate setting, this is always a good Valentine's Dinner choice.

315 Restaurant & Wine Bar
315 Old Santa Fe Trail
505.986.9190

The Old House Restaurant, another locals' favorite, has put together a fabulous-sounding prix-fixe Valentine's Dinner (Feb. 10-14) for $60/person, or $75/person with wine pairings. Start with a Caesar Salad or an Oyster Trio Sampler. Entree choices include a Petit Filet & Lobster Tail, Pan Roasted Scallops or Steak Frites. Heavenly dessert choices are Passion Fruit Creme Brulee, a Warm Chocolate Lava Cake or the Strawberry Mascarpone Tart.

The Old House
309 West San Francisco Street
505.995.4530

Italian cuisine is another favorite 'food for lovers', so you may want to check out the San Valentino Menu at Osteria d'Assisi. Antipasto, Oystes on the Half Shell and Tartar de Tonno (Tuna Tartare) start off this sumptuous menu, followed by incredible dishes of Salmon, Veal, Ravioli and more. Dessert choices include Tiramisu, Grand Marnier Mousse and a Chocolate Terrine. Fantastico!

Osteria d'Assisi
58 South Federal Place
505.986.5858

Celebrate Valentine's Day in Santa Fe!

Looking for a bit of romance this Valentine's Day? Book a room at Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals and then wow your sweetheart with a Couples Treatment at Absolute Nirvana Spa, just down the street.

Snuggle under our heavenly down comforters before heading over to enjoy a Southwestern-themed hot breakfast in front of a blazing fire. Then choose from one of the many tantalizing spa treatments at Absolute Nirvana. The spa is offering a Valentine's Special throughout the month of February, which includes two full body massages with warm oils infused with organic chocolate and rose essence, followed by a decadent rose petal bath in an oversized granite tub. Luxuriate with your loved one in a sea of roses from the petals of two dozen red roses as you sip Javanese Ginger Tea and nibble on tropical fruits and homemade truffles, a fire burning at your feet.

Many of Santa Fe's restaurants offer special dinners for Valentine's Day, including La Casa Sena, Osteria and The Old House (a $25 prix fixe menu!). Our staff will be happy to help you in booking your Valentine's dinner.

Shopping at the Sanbusco Market Center

Many of our female guests at The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals (and male too, for that matter!) will be interested in checking out the mega sale happening now at Allure, purveyors of luxurious lingerie in downtown Santa Fe. Stop by their boutique at 328 Guadalupe Street and take advantage of discounts up to 75% on selected items.

You might also want to stroll across the street to visit the jewelry shop of my friend Dell Fox. Dell goes to Bali at least once a year for inspiration, jewel buying and creation of her truly stunning pieces. Along with an Indonesian flavor, she also gets her inspiration from the cultures of ancient Greece, Rome and India. She uses 22K gold and precious stones to make the most intricate and delicate of pieces results in the most remarkably beautiful jewelry. Dell Fox Jewelry is located in the Sanbusco Market Center at 500 Montezuma Avenue.

The Sanbusco Market Center is also home to many more fun and interesting shops, as well as a couple of tasty dining establishments. In the mood for yummy Italian? Check out Pranzo Italian Grill. New to the Sanbusco Market Center is Ragaa, serving authentic and perfectly spiced East Indian cuisine.

There is way more to Santa Fe than shopping, but that being said, we are known for our plethora of unique shopping opportunities.

New Year's Day Turtle Dances at Taos Pueblo

Guests of the Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals come from around the world to learn about the area's Native American culture and history. A terrific opportunity to experience this heritage first-hand presents itself on New Year's Day with the Turtle Dances at the nearby Taos Pueblo. This pueblo, designated as both a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and a National Historic Landmark, has been continuously inhabited for over 1000 years.

The Taos Pueblo, famous for its drums and micaceous pottery, is fiercely independent in spirit. Residents continue to speak the unwritten Tiwa language, and are committed to integrating the traditional way of life with the realities of existing in the modern world. A day trip to this fascinating pueblo is a high on the list of things to do while in Santa Fe, and to be there during a ceremonial dance is an added treat.

The dances are scheduled to begin on January 1, 2012 around 8am, though this is only an approximate time. Please note that no cameras or cell phones are allowed during this blessing ritual, which carries deep cultural significance to the community of the Taos Pueblo. Please behave with utmost respect and consideration, much as you would in a church.

Taos Pueblo
120 Veterans Highway
Taos, NM
575.758.1028

Santa Fe Southern Railway Holiday Trains

Guests of The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals can get in the holiday spirit and see some of the fabulous scenery of New Mexico while riding one of the Santa Fe Southern Railway Holiday Trains. From December 16 through December 24, 2011, take a ride to either Lamy or the Galisteo Basin Overlook while riding in vintage railcars dating back to the 1920's. All riders on the Holiday Trains will enjoy spectacular scenery while singing traditional Christmas Carols.

If there are children in your party, you will want to be sure to book yourself a train with Santa himself. For even more Christmas magic, book the Story Book Ride, which features a reading of the Polar ExpressTM book, with complimentary hot chocolate and cookies. Guests on this ride are encouraged to wear their PJ's!

Booking reservations in advance is highly recommended, as these are very popular rides. Ticket prices ranges from $20-$50, depending on age and the ride selected. Check online for a Schedule of dates, times and prices.

Please call the Santa Fe Southern Railway to book your reservations at 505.989.8600. The railway office is open Monday through Saturday from 9am-5pm, and open Sunday from 11am-3pm.

All trains board at the historic depot located at:
410 S. Guadalupe Street
Santa Fe, NM

Holiday Music from Santa Fe Pro Musica

Santa Fe is a very popular destination for the Christmas holidays. The Alexander's Inn Vacation Rentals are filled with guests who come every year for the festive faroitas lining the rooftops, the smell of pinon burning in kiva fireplaces, great holiday shopping, fantastic cuisine, and an overall jolly holiday spirit. Music is, of course, a very important component of the Christmas holidays, and Santa Fe Pro Musica provides the perfect holiday concert for music lovers of all ages.

Beginning on Sunday, December 18 and again from December 20-24, the Santa Fe Pro Musica Baroque Ensemble will perform the music of Bach, Handel, Vivaldi, Teleman, along with traditional carols. Performances will take place at the Loretto Chapel, home of the miracle staircase, just a few blocks away from Hacienda Nicholas.

Ticket prices are $15-65. Tickets may be purchased over the phone at 505.988.4640 or online.

Santa Fe Pro Musica - A Baroque Christmas
December 18, 20-24 at 6pm & 8pm each evening
Loretto Chapel
207 Old Santa Fe Trail

Dining Deal at The Old House Restaurant

Savor a delicious 3-course dinner at the landmark Old House Restaurant, located at the Eldorado Hotel, just one block from The Plaza. This celebrated restaurant is offering a Prix Fixe Menu for just $25/person, now through December 23, 2011.

The restaurant has received numerous accolades: AAA awarded the Old House Four Diamonds, Zagat honors it as New Mexico's best restaurant, and Wine Spectator gave the wine list their "Award of Excellence".

Whether you are celebrating a special occasion or simply seeking a delicious meal at a good price, The Old House's impeccable service, inspired menu and elegant atmosphere will surely please even the most discerning diner.

Old House Restaurant
309 W. San Francisco Street
Santa Fe, NM
505.995.4530
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Alexander's Inn • info@alexanders-inn.com • 505-986-1431 or 1-888-321-5123 • 529 East Palace Avenue, Santa Fe New Mexico 87501