My wife and i recently stayed at the Hacienda Nicholas after reading glowing reviews and noting how close it was to the center of activities in Santa Fe (our first time to be there).
Let me start with the positives. I loved the foyer area, and the weekday innkeeper was so polite, helpful, and knowledgeable that it really enhanced our stay. I truly felt like she made our walk around town more efficient and pleasurable. The B&B itself is only a 5-10 minute walk to the Plaza, which was wonderful. The bedroom was about what I expected, and was in good condition. I thought the bathroom was spacious, and everything from water pressure (don't worry about the ubiquitous "low flow" warnings everywhere) to the tiling worked very well (except for one thing I'll denote below). The wine and cheese and dessert selections were most appreciated and made HN feel more like home.
Now, for what we disliked. The parking lot at this place is atrocious; on the day we left, I watched a patron spend 15 minutes trying to free his car from the large-rock gravel parking, and there were no wet or snowy conditions (dry as a bone). A more compact, stable solution needs to exist rather than what is present now. While the room was nice, there was a large bureau/wardrobe that blocked access to the closet. It does not do much good to have luggage stands in a closet if you can't get your luggage into it. Just something for the owner to consider in the future.
In the bathroom, the lighting was very poor. There needs to be better lighting around the mirror or in the overhead; I felt I was dealing with a 1850's vintage cottage by candle or oil lighting at times. It was quite sad and should be corrected. Also, while I understand the need to go to a dispenser system--I have no problem with it at all, but I greatly dismiss the "going green" and "eco-babble" from the inn's owner--the odor from some of those soaps was nauseating. Unscented or very mildly scented soap is all that should be considered. My wife had to use the shampoo I brought as soap due to the strong, offensive odor from the dispensers.
As for the breakfast, I was highly disappointed (though my wife liked them). I was expecting more fresh, prepared foods like pancakes, waffles, scrambled eggs, b'fast potatoes, etc., but all we were served was the "square-quiche-of-the-day" pre-warmed breakfast casserole, a bland cup of fruit, and a few cereal choices. I have had more filling and satisfying breakfasts at Best Westerns than at Hacienda Nicholas, and that was one of the primary reasons I booked a stay there . . . the alleged excellent breakfasts. Pre-refrigerated breakfast casserole is a cop-out, and if I had known this was the standard fair, I never would have booked my stay. This sounds harsh, but I was that underwhelmed with what was provided.
Lastly, this is no one's fault, and more indicative of Santa Fe in general, but this Inn is obviously very popular with the over 60 crowd, because that is pretty much all we saw. And due to most of these folks getting up VERY early, don't plan on sleeping in too much due to the racket in adjacent rooms (unless you are already that we, which my wife and I were not). Plus, apparently it is an unwritten rule here or at other B&B's, or maybe just with the over 60 crowd, to congregate in the foyer and talk loudly until about 10-10:30. I thought this was rude and inconsiderate, but I guess I'm just a "young'un" and don't know the proper protocol. What I do know is manners, and if I want to socialize, I would prefer to go out on the town or out to dinner; of course, most of the town closes before 8PM, hence its popularity to the more senior members of high society. I've never seen older people flock to ritz crackers, store-bought cheese, and a few grapes faster than this place. It must be "in the air."
I doubt I would return to Hacienda Nicholas, since the negatives outweigh the positives in my eyes, but if you fit into some of the demographics above, and have less issues with what we had issues with, then you will likely really like the place. If that is your position, then I recommend it to you.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This enchanting B&B offers guests a true taste of the Southwest. Enjoy a great night’s sleep in our beds of feather and down. Unwind in the peace and tranquility afforded by extra thick adobe walls or go one step further and experience sublime bliss next door at the Absolute Nirvana Spa. Savor the luscious scents from our heavenly rose garden and partake of delectable Southwestern inspired breakfasts and afternoon wine & cheese. Let our dedicated staff help you make the most of Santa Fe so you can have the holiday you deserve. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Hacienda Nicholas Hotel Santa Fe