Fodor's Expert Review Eldorado Hotel & Spa
309 W. San Francisco St., Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501, USA See on Map
Because it's the closest thing Santa Fe has to a convention hotel, the Eldorado is sometimes passed over in favor of more intimate properties, but it's actually a quite inviting property, with individually decorated rooms and stunning mountain views, and a fantastic location just a couple of blocks from the Plaza. The rooftop pool and gym are great features, and the hip Agave Restaurant and Lounge is one of the most inviting happy-hour and late-night snacking spots in town.
YOU SHOULD KNOW In addition to the standard rates, there's a $25 nightly resort fee that includes valet parking, Wi-Fi, and a few other amenities, although many of these (in-room safes, in-room coffee) are complimentary at other upscale properties.
Rooms are stylishly furnished with carved Southwestern-style desks, large upholstered club chairs, and art prints; many have terraces or kiva-style fireplaces. Artwork by noted artists Randy L. Barton hang in many rooms, which also feature premium Serta bedding, including down pillows and Southwestern-print throws and pillows. Useful gadgets include iPod clock radios, 47-inch flat-screen TVs, safes, and mini-refrigerators.
Try to book a room on one of the upper floors for the best views of the mountains and the historic blocks around Downtown.
Bathrooms at the Eldorado are among the most spacious of any hotel in town. All have separate vanities with sinks and makeup mirrors, and luxurious La Bottega bath products are provided.
The Eldorado has a large, inviting lobby that opens onto the hotel's main restaurant and bars. There's plenty of space to spread out and relax, including stylish, modern lounge chairs and sofas. The section toward the back, which adjoins the swanky Cava bar and has beamed latilla-and-viga ceilings and contemporary local artwork, is especially popular as a place to socialize and hobnob over drinks.
The rooftop pool, though compact, is an absolute stunner, framed by low adobe walls that allow panoramic views of Downtown and the surrounding Sangre de Cristo mountains. Comfy, upscale patio furniture is great for lounging, and there's a good-size sunken hot tub as well.
A full slate of treatments, from Vichy rain showers to High Mesa salt scrubs, is offered by the hotel's serene and luxurious Nidah Spa, which has attractive locker facilities outfitted with plush robes and fine MoroccanOil bath products. Be sure to spend some time in the ultra-relaxing eucalyptus steam bath before or after your treatment.
The Eldorado has one of the largest and most extensively outfitted gyms of any property in the city, with a nice selection of up-to-date cardio machines and weights.
In 2017, the hotel rebranded and redesigned its longtime restaurant, the Old House, as Agave Restaurant & Lounge, which is actually an extension of the former Agave bar. It's a stylish, upscale, and modern space that specializes in steaks, seafood, and other lavish fare.
The lounge section of the Agave Restaurant a fun and lively spot for late-night snacking and drinking. It has a popular happy hour, and a nice selection of bar foods. Another welcoming spot for drinks is Cava, an upscale contemporary space off the lobby with stylish lounge chairs and sofas and a food and wine program inspired by the Basque region of Spain.
The Eldorado is right in the heart of Santa Fe historic Plaza area, and within easy walking distance of many restaurants and attractions. It's possible to get by without a car, relying on Uber and taxis. Parking is included in the mandatory resort fee.
For some of the best modern Japanese food, including excellent sushi and ramen, book a table at Shohko Café, a long-running local favorite inside a charming, historic adobe building. Fire & Hops (4-minute drive) is a terrific little gastropub serving delicious contemporary comfort food, house-made ice cream in creative flavors, and an array of excellent local and other domestic craft beers.
Stylish and cozy Tonic (3-minute walk) presents live jazz most evenings and has a great list of craft cocktails. The rooftop terrace at the open-air Bell Tower Bar (6-minute drive), at the historic La Fonda hotel, is a memorable perch for watching sunset.
WHY WE LIKE IT
It's hard to beat the extensive, top-notch facilities at Downtown Santa Fe's largest hotel, including a rooftop pool, an exercise room, expansive dining options, and an outstanding spa. At five stories, it's also one of the tallest properties in town, and rooms on the upper floors have terrific views of the city.
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