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Savings alert! 13% below average rates

The price you found is 13% lower than this hotel's average rate of $275/night.

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Reviews (2,478)
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Reviewed January 4, 2012

Think more Resort than Casino. This hotel is about 10-15 minutes north of the historic Santa Fe Plaza. This is not a bad thing; I found the price and amenities far outweighed the attraction of staying downtown.

New Mexico is beautiful; the relatively remote location allows us outdoor lovers a great opportunity to hike around in some of the most beautiful countryside in America. Winter snow shuts the golf course down; giving you easy access to 'hiking' trails around the property to tire your four-legged friends out and take in some great exercise while acclimating to this higher altitude (Santa Fe is at 7,000 ft). Our dogs felt very welcome, and a helpful bellhop told us how to access the dog area (grass) without going through the lobby (plus). Poop bags are located around the exteriors of the buildings.

The rooms are big, super clean, new and beautiful. A surprise for us was a patio which looked to appear on almost all the rooms. A tip for you dog travelers: some patios have no fence; you could walk your dog just like you're home.

We stayed over the Christmas holidays and the Casino and Restaurants (three of them) gave us something to do while we relaxed. The buffet was great, and the Red Sage restaurant was a bit pricey but the experience of having a gourmet meal steps away from our room and pets, made it worth it. We did not have a chance to try the other restaurant.

The Casino is downstairs from the rest of the Resort. It's not the biggest, but certainly seemed nicer than some others we've been to (Winstar). Tip: If you use your Hilton Honors club website for reservations there might be a few freebies like $20 per person on the machines.

The gym facilities were larger than most, with more equipment, a decent set of hand dumbbells and room for yoga/pilates/exercise ball. The pool has entry through two locker rooms; I found the lockers to be locked, so perhaps a trip to the desk would grant a key to use them but I did not look into it. The pool was fair size and featured some nice water features. The hot tub was big enough to fit 8 people without touching.

As for the location, Taos may be the furthest ski area but it is not out of the question if you're from the Northeast like me (1.5 hours). Ski Santa Fe is 45 minutes and a lot of that is from driving the 10 miles of switchbacks up the mountain. Pajarito Mountain is a bit smaller but probably closer without any switchbacks. Los Alamos is nearby and offers some interesting sights. 3.5 hours can get you to the Colorado Sand Dunes National Park with a very scenic drive in between. Then of course there is Santa Fe which I've said is only 10 minutes away.

Overall I gave this location a 5 of 5 for service, quality, price, and location. I would definitely stay there again with or without dogs.

Room Tip: If you have dogs ask for a room with a patio without a gate.
  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Tim G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 3, 2012

In Santa Fe, using Hilton Honors, you've got a choice of the nice Hilton with an awkward location vs. mediocre Hilton with great location. We stayed four nights at Buffalo Thunder last week and found our room (suite with fireplace in both the bedroom and sitting room) very comfortable. Furnishings looked pretty new and everything was in good condition. I really would have loved better lighting for reading, either in the sitting room or in the bedroom. Never having been to Santa Fe, I wasn't sure how much of a hassle it would be to drive to the downtown area. What it really meant was by the time we finished going out for the day and had returned to the hotel, it felt like more of a bother to leave again at night. Slightly disappointing since I had a two-page list of restaurants to visit, but the altitude + cold temps were a convincing argument to stay at the resort. It was somewhat surprising that such a big place didn't have more indoor activities, like bowling or a movie theater. Once you're at Buffalo Thunder, there isn't much else out there to do. Be advised that the indoor pool, while beautiful, is a Roman-styled bath, which means no lane swimming. The hotel also accepts pets--thankfully, the rooms are very well insulated. We never had a problem with noise, compared to the Hilton in downtown Santa Fe.

The staff at the hotel were excellent, particularly at check-in. We were very impressed with their efficiency and friendliness--a huge plus for the Hilton. The concierge desk was also very helpful and gave us many maps and advice on things to do. For visitors new to Santa Fe, I think the staff at Buffalo Thunder do a great job of orienting you to activities and events.

Room Tip: The rooms facing west have beautiful sunsets, though it overlooks the parking lot.
  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank InTheory
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 3, 2012

My son and I stayed there for 5 nights between Christmas and New Year. The room was nice and spacious. I agree that the lighting in the room and bathroom is poor. We had a small meal at Red Sage, way overpriced. Ate twice at the Turquoise Trail in the Casino and enjoyed the food, but the first night it took forever to get it. We think the waitress may have forgotten to put the order in. We did not use the Casino, it did look a little seedy, but we were not there to gamble, so it didn't really matter. We were totally shocked at the Internet connection cost.
The walls are paper thin and a couple of nights it was really loud with kids running up and down the hall and adults carrying on.
Outrageous! Probably would not stay there again.

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled with family
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2  Thank Stuttgart21_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 2, 2012

We stayed in room 4218. The hotel is very much a beautiful space, designed in the Pueblo style. Loved it. The room itself was very clean, and the bathroom was clean too. There is a safe in the room, and it is plenty large. The shower was a bit weak, especially given how cold this part of the US is, one would love a strong, multi-setting shower, with plenty of hot water.

It is a low rise hotel, so not so much in the way of views, but the space is huge and includes a casino which we didn't use since our next stop was Vegas anyways. Note that there is not anything really near the hotel in the way of fast food, or a convenience store. Knowing this, the convenience store has a large stock of day-to-day items. However, it is a bit cheaper if you buy in Santa Fe and bring it back if you are exploring the old town already.

The concierge was extremely helpful in explaining the ski areas, and for the closer ones lift tickets can be bought at the front desk.

There are plenty of places nearby to rent equipment and all the ski resorts rent ski equipment too, at a premium.

The hotel itself, while the service aspect is very strong, could use a bit more attention. When we were walking to the breakfast buffet, we saw some chicken bones on the floor in the hallway. They were still there when we came back. There were similar things that showed a lack of attention, granted it's a big place, but we did see employees walking around quite often.

Room Tip: Room 4218 is pretty nice, and across from the vending machines.
  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Azhkman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 1, 2012

Stayed two nights at the Buffalo Thunder Resort over new year's break with family, including a two year old and 15 year old, and it was busy, being informed upon check-in that the hotel was "full". The building itself is beautifully designed and decorated, yet found it was at times a little trying to navigate. We had a hard time finding the swimming pool, and finally found it after being told you have to go through the weight room, locker room, and then enter into the indoor pool area, which was nice and the kids enjoyed it. First night in our room we ran out of toilet paper, called front desk for more, was told "housekeeping is really busy and it may take a while to get you some, if you want it sooner you can come to the front desk and get some because we always keep some here". I'm sorry, but even at cheaper hotels I've never been told to go get my own toilet paper! Felt housekeeping should have put a full roll on to begin with, and the answer to the request for more should have been "I'm so sorry for your inconvenience, we'll get that to you right away" and it should have showed up within 10mn. Also, the lack of parking if you don't want to pay $8 a pop for valet is inconvient(other hotels include valet parking), and at night you have to park a ways out and hike back to hotel. Beds were nice pillowtops with warm duvets. As a family we would have rather had an empty mini-fridge instead of one filled with over-priced waters and pops that are charged to your room. The bathroom was large and roomy, towels were big and we each only needed one. The adults in the group didn't get a chance to enjoy the casino, as we were tired each night after exploring Santa Fe. I guess I just expected more out of Hilton hotels. Probably will not be staying there again.

  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled with family
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2  Thank Colorado-ean
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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