Fodor's Expert Review Inn of the Turquoise Bear

342 E. Buena Vista St., Santa Fe, New Mexico 87505, USA See on Map

The 20th-century poet Witter Bynner owned this handsome—and spacious—adobe compound for nearly a half century, during which he hosted such luminaries as Georgia O'Keeffe, D.H. Lawrence, and Errol Flynn. Today it's a beautifully restored B&B with 11 elegantly furnished guestrooms and a secluded yet central location just off the historic Old Santa Fe Trail.

YOU SHOULD KNOW This is a rambling, historic property with steps leading to a number of rooms and outdoor terraces—it's not ideal for travelers with mobility concerns.


The inn's 11 rooms, which are each named for famous past guests, vary greatly in size and decor, but all capture the historic style of Santa Fe. Thick abobe walls, wood-beam ceilings, and fireplaces (in all but one room) are typical, and some rooms have cozy sitting areas and private porches.

Request one of the several rooms entered from beautifully landscaped terraces for both privacy and easy access to the gorgeous grounds.


Every bathroom at the inn is distinct, and some are on the quirky side. A few rooms have a shared bath, and some have low ceilings. Depending on the room, you may have a shower or shower/tub combo and even clawfoot tubs. The elegant Witter Bynner Room has a spacious walk-in spa shower.


The cozy lobby, with a beamed ceiling and Southwest art and textiles, is filled with armchairs and books about the area—warmed by a fireplace, it's a great spot to relax with a book on a cool day. It also adjoins breakfast room.


The inn has no restaurant, but a generous full breakfast—which might include a frittata, blue-corn pancakes, or quiche Lorraine—is served fireside in the spacious dining room, which is anchored by a long community table. On warm days, you can also enjoy your breakfast at one of the smaller outdoor tables on the terrace.

If you'd rather not dine with a group, the inn will happily prepare breakfast for you on a tray, which you can bring back to your room.


There's no bar or restaurant at the inn, but there are a number of eateries within a short walk.


Getting Around

The inn is on a quiet residential side street in the South Capitol neighborhood, just off of Old Santa Fe Trail, one of the main roads to the historic city center. There's off-street parking, but once you get here, you only need your car for getting to the outskirts of the city, as most major attractions and dozens of shops and restaurants are within walking distance.


You'll find dozens of notable restaurants within an easy stroll north of the inn, including Restaurant Martin (10-minute walk), where you can sample the sophisticated contemporary American cuisine of vaunted chef and cookbook author Martin Rios, and casual Santa Fe Bite (10-minute walk), one of the top spots in town for juicy green-chile cheeseburgers.


Sample about 10 local ciders and 20 craft beers at New Mexico Hard Cider Taproom (15-minute walk), which also serves tasty sandwiches and sausages. The Bell Tower Bar (15-minute walk) at the iconic Hotel La Fonda is a fabulous place to sip margaritas and watch the sunset.


With its bohemian literary heritage and wonderfully rich historic character, this is one of New Mexico's most atmospheric inns, offering guests an opportunity to experience the authentic vibe of old Santa Fe. Knowledgeable, friendly innkeepers freely dispense advice on where to go and what to see. The inn is spread across an acre shaded by tall evergreens and punctuated by delightful gardens and terraces with comfy outdoor furniture, and most rooms have separate outdoor entrances, making this a great choice if you enjoy smaller properties but prefer a sense of privacy.


Free Parking


Phones: 505-983-0798

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