Named for an archaeological site at Chaco Canyon back in the 1930s, this rambling adobe property has been providing overnight accommodations for decades, originally as a low-budget apartment complex popular with artists and then as a reasonably priced bed-and-breakfast, which it's been since the late '80s. The owners have made plenty of upgrades over the years, but the rates are still moderate, and the rooms—though in some cases quite cozy—are homey and inviting, with beam ceilings and colorful Southwestern furnishings.
The 19 rooms range from compact standards to large suites with big sitting areas and full kitchens. All have kiva-style fireplaces, and common decorative elements include Saltillo-tile or hardwood floors, beam ceilings, colorful Southwestern rugs and bedspreads, and rustic Mexican and New Mexican folk furniture.
YOU SHOULD KNOW There's a small charge to use the wood-burning kiva fireplace in your room. Ask at the front desk if you're interesting in this service.
The bathrooms at Pueblo Bonito tend to be on the compact side but abound with charming touches, like cheerful Talavera tile walls and old-fashioned pedestal sinks.
A warmly decorated pair of guest lounges are set up with tables and rustic furniture. Breakfast is served here each morning, and cookies and refreshments are put out later in the day. There's also a gift shop with fine Southwestern jewelry and crafts.
There's no restaurant, but an excellent breakfast is included in the rates. If dining in is important, consider one of the several suites with full kitchens.
Although there's no bar, a few rooms have kitchens and all have small refrigerators, which come in handy for storing beer, wine, and mixers, which you can purchase at several nearby grocery and liquor stores.
Fringing both the trendy Railyard District and historic South Capitol neighborhood, the inn is within a short walk of key Downtown museums, restaurants, and galleries. A car isn't a must for staying here, as you can even walk here from the Rail Runner train station, but it is helpful for exploring some of the many attractions in the vicinity, and there's free parking on-site.
Cozy and charming Andiamo! (5-minute walk) serves exceptional Italian food, including handmade pastas and crispy-crust pizzas with interesting topping like house-made lamb sausage. The sleekly sophisticated, 38-seat Anasazi Restaurant (12-minute walk) is one of Santa Fe's most celebrated venues for modern American fare, from poached wild halibut with trout roe to duck breast with smoked-corn pudding, summer squash, and cherry. A lighter menu is available in the scene-y bar, which also has patio seating.
Hip and lively Paloma (6-minute walk) serves stellar margaritas and other mixed drinks and offers a terrific selection of well-prepared gastropub fare, from Mexico City–style tacos to guacamole. The lively bar at Violet Crown Cinema (8-minute walk) in the Railyard District is a great place for enjoying craft beers and colorful cocktails, whether or not you're attending a movie on one of this boutique multiplex's several screens.
WHY WE LIKE IT
With great rates and cozy rooms that exude historic Southwestern character, this rambling B&B is one of the better deals in Santa Fe. Breakfasts are hearty and delicious, and the staff is friendly and responsive. The location, close to the hip Railyard District and right on the edge of Downtown, is a huge plus.