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Welcome Home... to Santa Fe
As one Santa Fe resident put it, "Santa Fe is a metropolis, without being a metropolis." You can enjoy all that this sophisticated city has to offer—it's the third largest art market in the U.S.—yet still live near wild horses and elk. Spend the day fly fishing or hiking a remote mountain trail and catch the opera in the evening.

Santa Fe is truly "the City Different," as it is often called, with more than 250 art galleries, 225 restaurants, a world-class opera company, and enough variety in housing to fit every taste. The Sangre de Cristo Mountains provide a gorgeous backdrop—snowcapped in winter; dramatic in summer, as thunderclouds form above the peaks.

Santa Fe, Spanish for "Holy Faith," is a city that's rich in history. In 1598, it was the northernmost settlement along the Camino Real, the "Royal Road" from Mexico City. It's the oldest state capital in the country.

The town was built around a central plaza, in the traditional Spanish style of the day. In 1829, the plaza marked the end of the Santa Fe Trail from Missouri. Today the Plaza is ringed with shops and galleries, and it's the site of art festivals, performances, and special events. Native American artists sell their jewelry and crafts at the north end, under the portal at the Palace of the Governors.

Since the 1800s, Santa Fe has been the home of three distinct cultures: Native American, Hispanic and Anglo. There are eight sovereign Indian pueblos located near Santa Fe. Indian art fills galleries and museums. Spanish influences are everywhere in Santa Fe—from art and cuisine to churches, plaza, culture, and government.

The spirit of the West is very much alive in Santa Fe. You'll see it in dress, home décor, and attitude. There's a sense of independence among Santa Feans. Diversity is valued and encouraged. History and tradition are part of everyday life.

When it comes to real estate, "the City Different" certainly applies. There is a wide variety of neighborhoods to choose from—and property to fit every lifestyle. Are you looking for a golf course community? Horse property? A cozy, in-town condo? A second home? Be forewarned: once you start looking at Santa Fe real estate, you may never leave this beautiful city!

Courtyard gardens are everywhere in Santa Fe. Hollyhocks, roses, & geraniums bloom against adobe.
Santa Fe has an amazing array of housing choices from cozy in-town condos to elegant golf course homes.
You'll discover hand-carved gates, hidden courtyards, and centuries-old adobes.
Santa Fe Neighborhoods
The east side of Santa Fe encompasses the Canyon Road art district area—the "art and soul of Santa Fe." Located off narrow, winding side streets are some of Santa Fe's most desirable homes. Walled compounds hide historic haciendas. Courtyards bloom with lilacs and wisteria. Traditional architectural elements, like vigas, portals, carved gates, and kiva fireplaces provide a unique, Santa Fe touch. Condos in this part of town provide a great second-home getaway, within walking distance of art galleries, shopping, and restaurants.

As you head north or south of the city of 65,800 residents, you'll be surrounded the beauty of Santa Fe's unique landscape. In summer, chamisa, sunflowers, and wild asters bloom by the roadside. The hills are studded with piñon and juniper. Mountain and sunset views are spectacular, and homes are sited to take full advantage of them. Tucked into the landscape are a mix of historic properties and new, high-end homes. Many homes are on an acre or more. Luxury condos and ranchettes round out the housing offerings.

Just a six-mile drive from the Plaza is Las Campanas, a Lyle Anderson community nestled on 4,700 acres at the foot of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. The Anderson Company is known for developing private clubs and communities with magnificent settings, unparalleled amenities, and the potential for appreciation. Other Anderson communities include Desert Highlands, Desert Mountain, and Superstition Mountain, in Arizona; Hokuli'a, in Hawaii; and the Loch Lomond Golf Club, in Scotland.

The Las Campanas community has 1,700 homesites (ranging from one to five acres), in 11 distinct neighborhoods. Homes represent Southwest-style architecture and design at its finest. Las Campanas features two Jack Nicklaus-designed golf courses. Golf Digest ranked the Sunrise Course as the number-one golf course in New Mexico.

The community also features a world-class equestrian center, with a 30,000+square-foot indoor riding and training area. The 66,000 acres of open land bordering Las Campanas provide plenty of trail-riding opportunities. The Hacienda Clubhouse, winner of the Golden Nugget award for "the finest recreational clubhouse in America," is a great spot place to relax after a round of golf or to meet friends for dinner.

Eldorado, about 10 miles north of the Plaza, has a community feel and a range of housing choices—from elegant ranch estates to affordable, Santa-Fe-style properties. The landscape is wild and rugged; and night skies, miles from city lights, are breathtaking.

You'll find horse property just minutes from the Plaza.
In the late 1800s, Victorian architecture took its place beside Pueblo and territorial-style homes.
Courtyards are a popular part of traditional Santa Fe architecture.
Santa Fe Architecture
Santa Fe architecture is as unique as Santa Fe itself. Here are some highlights of what you're likely to encounter in your quest for that perfect Santa Fe home.

Adobe: Santa Fe homes were traditionally constructed of adobe brick, a mixture of sun-dried clay bricks, mixed with grasses for strength. While some new Santa Fe homes are still built of adobe, most achieve the "look" of an adobe-style home through frame construction and the artful use of stucco.

Color palette: Simple: it's tans and browns. Santa Fe homes blend in to the landscape around them. Even multi-million dollar mansions are discretely tucked into the hills.

Dirt roads: Some of the most expensive real estate in town is located on dirt roads. It's part of Santa Fe's charm—and very much in keeping with the "blend in with the landscape" philosophy.

Fireplaces: Many Santa Fe homes have multiple fireplaces, including one or more outside. A curved fireplace, placed in a corner, is called a kiva. There's nothing cozier than piñon logs burning in the fireplace on a snowy Santa Fe evening.

Nichos: A nicho is a small, recessed area of a wall—the perfect place to display a piece of sculpture or, for the traditionalists, the carved santo that you got at Spanish Market.

The front door: It says "Santa Fe" before you even enter the house. It's often heavy, carved, antique, or antique-looking—and the door hardware is just as distinctive, whether it's hand-wrought or just looks like it.

Portal: Another popular feature of Santa Fe homes, the portal is a covered patio, ideal for dining, entertaining, or just enjoying those fabulous Santa Fe sunsets.

Vigas: Santa Fe ceilings are anything but plain. Vigas are long beams that support the roof. Latillas are the wood strips between the vigas. Canales channel water from the roof, where water-wise Santa Feans often place a rain barrel.

A Las Campanas home overlooking the golf course.
The typical Santa Fe door is heavy, carved, antique, or antique-looking.
Many homes are built to provide a seamless flow between indoor and outdoor living.
Landscaping is often designed to blend in with the area's natural vegetation.
Santa Fe At a Glance
  • Population: 65,800
  • Luxury home price range: $500,000 to $14 million
  • Land area in square miles: 37.4
  • Distance from Albuquerque: 58 miles NE

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  • Maybe it's the pristine air or the 7,000-foot elevation, but there's something unique about Santa Fe sunsets.


    Print Date: 8/3/2020
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