This rambling, reasonably priced hotel property by the Santa Fe River is staffed by a polite, enthusiastic bunch. Perks include a complimentary tea-and-sherry social each afternoon and a quite extensive breakfast buffet along with free Wi-Fi and parking. Considering the wallet-friendly rates, the facilities are impressive, too, and include a small but lovely outdoor pool and one of the more atmospheric little saloons Downtown.
The cheerful rooms have a Mexican theme, with bright colors, hand-painted folk art, feather pillows, Southwestern fabrics, and handmade furnishings; deluxe rooms also have balconies and fireplaces.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Many rooms are connected and accessed by exterior hallways. These are attractively designed and decorated with flower boxes, but if this is a negative for you, request one of the rooms set along an interior hallway.
Bathrooms are on the compact side and could use updating, although they're perfectly adequate, especially given the reasonable rates. You will find high-quality towels and excellent C.O. Bigelow bath products in each one.
There's an attractive lobby with a fireplace, several armchairs and sofas, and Southwestern furnishings. It's a comfortable place to relax with a book or work on your laptop. Complimentary sherry, tea, and snacks are served here each afternoon.
Pools are a rarity in Downtown Santa Fe, and the one at the Inn of the Governors is compact but very attractive. It's fringed by a ivy-covered wall and is just off the lobby, and the patio furniture is new, comfortable, and stylish.
It says a lot that even locals regularly frequent the hotel's lively and atmospheric bar and grill, Del Charro Saloon, which serves one of the city's best green-chile cheeseburgers (and chile fries) as well as frito pies, nachos, and other tasty pub grub. It's also one of the few places downtown that serves food until midnight (11 pm on Sundays). Rates also include an extensive hot breakfast buffet, which is served in the restaurant.
Del Charro Saloon is a festive spot for drinks, and the bar has been honored in a number of local polls for serving the best margarita in town.
The inn is in the heart of Downtown Santa Fe, and it's possible to reach a number of key attractions and businesses on foot. It's also within walking distance of the Rail Runner train station. However, given that parking is free, and a car is handy for exploring the region, most guests do bring their own wheels. If you don't have a car, public transportation in Santa Fe isn't especially practical, and Uber or cabs is your better option.
Cafe Pasqual's (2-minute walk) is renowned for some of the most delicious modern Southwestern fare in the state and is open for both breakfast and dinner, including James Beard–winning chef Katharine Kagel's signature mole enchiladas and slow-cooked Yucatán-style cochinita pibil (pork shoulder with orange and lime juices). Boasting an immense selection of fine bourbons, Radish & Rye (10-minute walk) is also a hip spot for well-crafted modern American fare--save room for the bourbon pecan pie.
Head up to the rooftop of the famed La Fonda hotel to enjoy drinks at the Bell Tower Bar (3-minute walk)--the views at sunset are fabulous. Set inside the beloved Pink Adobe restaurant, the colorful Dragon Room (5-minute walk) is an inviting place to hobnob and sip margaritas.
WHY WE LIKE IT
Given the fantastic downtown location, highly professional staff, free parking, hearty complimentary breakfast, and other perks that are almost unheard of in Santa Fe's city center, Inn of the Governors represents an exceptional value. The rooms are attractively furnished, too, with a colorful, local vibe.