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“A Peaceful Retreat into Times Past”

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Los Pinos Guest Ranch
Santa Fe, NM
Level Contributor
16 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“A Peaceful Retreat into Times Past”
Reviewed July 18, 2012

June 2012 was our second year to pack up our grandkids and head for Los Pinos, at the kids request. And once again, we experienced a delightful sojourn in the tender care of Alice and her family. Los Pinos provides a peaceful retreat into times past, from the log cabins with real chinking and beds covered with quilts and lots of blankets to the old family piano (very much in tune) in the parlor, where our granddaughter's held nightly recitals. But old time cooking was never this good.....Alice knows her way around a kitchen! We had several repeat requests from last year's menu....Alice's excellent rendition of Julia Child's sumptuous baked chicken with sauce and her own delectable run cake. Feel free to bring your own bottle of wine to enjoy at dinner. Wake up to the ring of the cow bell, calling you to a full breakfast of eggs any style or Alice's to-die-for 100% whole wheat pancakes with real maple syrup. We spent one day hiking up to a nearby cave. The next day found the seven of us mounted on neighboring Circle S Stables steeds for a picnic ride to one of the beautiful Pecos Wilderness mesas. ( Alice and her brother also have horses available for trail rides right from Los Pinos.) Sitting on our cabin porch with a glass of wine watching the chipmunks and children play after an active day was delightful, too!

Room Tip: We have stayed in two of Los Pinos cabins, each quite commodious, rustic, charming. Each cabin has...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
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5 Thank NMPam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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12 reviews from our community

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virginia
Level Contributor
28 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed September 2, 2011

i am not going to go into the many dismal details about our stay in this laughably(in retrospect) so called guest ranch. run down, poorly maintained, expensive yet valueless. creepy.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
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4 Thank tjmiller50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Level Contributor
92 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 106 helpful votes
Reviewed May 13, 2011

(Note to Tripadvisor: the map and location of Los Pinos is inaccurate. The ranch is north of Pecos, NM, and nowhere near Hobbs.)

We've stayed in three of the four cabins at Los Pinos Ranch many times over the past dozen years. It's a magical place--none other quite like it. Less than an hour from Santa Fe and twenty miles north of Pecos NM, tucked into a high wooded valley (8500ft) with mountains to the north, east, and west, with the lively Pecos River just below, Los Pinos is a a blissful, total retreat from the here-and-now. It's as if time stopped here in, say, 1930.

The valley and its surroundings had been part of the huge 17th century Chavez land grant, where Amado Chavez, the last hidalgo of the property, built--of hand-hewn aspen and pine logs--a lodge early in the twentieth century. That lodge, the centerpiece of the McSweeney family's ranch, houses the lounge, dining room, kitchen, sunporch (afternoon tea!), plus a large stone fireplace for cool mornings and for evenings when guests can gather for drinks and chatter before partaking of one of Alice McSweeney's wonderful home-cooked, home-baked, four-course dinners. Her breakfasts are just as bountiful--waffles or eggs with chile sauce, bacon, sausage, fresh-baked breads--the works.

The four guest cabins are rustic and individual--more log construction, with clawfooted bathtubs, a fireplace or a pot-bellied stove to ward off the chill when necessay. (There's a woodbox on every porch.) Good beds piled high with quilts, and stunning views of the surrounding aspen groves and high mountains.

Plenty of history here, too. Los Pinos is listed on New Mexico's Landmark Registry. Guest have included well-known artists, writers, musicians, and others "in the know" over the past ninety years, most famously, perhaps, the physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer who as a young man came here again and again to ride, and fell in love with New Mexico's glorious mountains. (His love led to his locating the Manhattan Project at Los Alamos many years later.)

Outdoor opportunities abound: riding, fishing in the Pecos, great hikes into the Pecos Wilderness preserve, trekking up to small, high-elevation lakes in the Sangre de Cristo mountains, going off with one of the picnics that Alice provides for lunch, or just grabbing a book from the library and sitting on the porch or under a pine tree.

To call Lost Pinos casual or simple or rustic is an understatement, but there's a sense of an earlier time about it, as well as unstated standards of behavior. Not at all stuffy, of course. The fact that there's no TV anywhere nor telephones in rooms nor locks on doors contributes to the specialness of the place. Independent-minded people are at home here. Los Pinos is one of the most distinctive, marvellous time capsules in the West. If you love it, you'll return and return again, as we have.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
10 Thank vcdarty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Los Pinos Guest Ranch

Property: Los Pinos Guest Ranch
Address: Cowles, 20 miles north of Pecos, Tererro, NM
Location: United States > New Mexico > Tererro
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Specialty Lodging in Tererro
Number of rooms: 4
Also Known As:
Los Pinos Guest Ranch New Mexico/Tererro

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