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Reviewed February 27, 2006

I had a mostly excellent stay at the Inn of the Five Graces in mid-February. I had high expectations for the Inn, based on the stellar reviews that it has received on this site, and in Fodors, Andrew Harper Hideaway Report, etc. For the most part, these expectations were met.

The Inn of the Five Graces is a very unusual, eclectic, urbane B and B - but my somewhat limited experiences with B and Bs as quaint, stuffy, maybe even claustrophobic make clear that the Inn is something far more. The property itself is hands down a gem – in its location on a very old quiet street just minutes from the Santa Fe action, in its fascinating décor (like the tiling in the baths!), and in its attention to the sort of detail one expects in a world class luxury property – silky robes, thirsty towels, stocked fridges, a generous supply of custom designed toiletries, and efficient but unobtrusive service. I particularly liked the service charge in lieu of tipping, and the breakfast was far more elaborate than I had expected.

But for all these good points, there were some off notes during my three-night stay. I may have had a slightly different experience than what is “usual” since the manager was on vacation; the three staff that I had contact with seemed at times harried. Not unfriendly, but distracted. As are result of his absence, there was no daily walking tour offered, an amenity I was looking forward to. It was never even mentioned; I just surmised it didn’t happen because he was away. I was disappointed that there are really no public areas to speak of, except for the small tables in the office space where breakfast is served and wine and cheese are available in the afternoon. This never seemed very private to me. I was in a full suite (#23) with no sitting area, so there was nowhere to curl up with a book except in bed. If having this space is important to you, should book a deluxe or higher category suite. I do understand that plans are underway for a restaurant and more public space next door. In fact, construction on this building began at 8 am and this noise did not allow for sleeping in.

I am a fanatic about bedding. The sheets on my bed were not the high quality Egyptian or Italian linens I had hoped for, but good old Royal Velvet – fine, but I’ve slept in better at a Hyatt. The pillowcases seemed to be of two brands. The featherbed was indeed comfy, but it was not anchored down by a fitted sheet so in the morning it bunched up on one side of the bed.

A few more minor quibbles: the jacuzzi tub in my room didn’t work (even though I had enough water past the jets); the milk in the fridge was past its sell date and curdled; the carafes of “fresh juice” at breakfast were poured from bottles rather than squeezed fresh from fruit. The thermostat for my room was outside my unit, meaning I had to go into the foyer shared with another unit to set or change it. I was uncomfortable leaving valuables in the room without a safe (if there was one, it was not pointed out to me). Finally, I wish the car park were paved rather than dusty gravel.

Having said this, I would rate The Inn of the Five Graces a 4.5 (not possible on this site, sorry!). I think these minor issues are evidence of growing pains for a property that is literally growing in size and metaphorically in reputation. I certainly don’t regret staying here, as it was my first visit to Santa Fe and I had no point of reference I would very much like to stay here again, once the Inn deals with the “roughness around the edges” alluded to in this review. For a one-of-a-kind inn lodging experience in Santa Fe, the Five Graces will not disappoint.

  • Stayed: February 2006
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17  Thank Spacrawler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Denver, CO
218
Reviewed January 3, 2006

This was the most incredible place I've ever stayed! It was more than I ever expected in it's beauty and atmosphere. If you are looking for the anniversary trip of a lifetime (at least here in the States) this place is it! Gorgeous!! But best of all was the staff- I felt like I was visiting old friends or family. They were so incredibly warm and inviting! This place is magical- you won't regret a penny!!

  • Stayed: March 2004
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8  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 26, 2005

I have one regret about writing a glowing revue of the Inn.....I'm afraid that if I do.....everyone will find out about it and I won't ever be able to get a room!!....my husband and I just returned from 5 days in Santa Fe...and our stay at the Five Graces...where do I start....waiting in our room upon arrival were fresh margaritas/chips and salsa.....the room itself is a magical mix of colors and textures from the far east and the bathrooms are amazing...the tile work is breathtaking...not to mention the jacuzzi tubs....I can still smell the sage body wash and salt soaks....just one of the amazing amenities of this magical place....We will miss the afternoon wine and cheese...coming back from dinner to the smell of fresh baked cookies...only to find some left in our room for a midnight snack....Niall's stories(and there are some good ones!) meeting new friends....sitting around the outside fireplace and chatting with the other guests.......during the day I found myself daydreaming about jumping into my pj's and sinking into my featherbed....so dreamy and soft it just enveloped you.....The staff doesn't miss a trick...we happened to mention to Niall in one of our conversations that is was our anniversary..when we returned from dinner that evening we found champagne chilling....and that wasn't the last time....on our last night there was another with a note thanking us for our stay, all of the staff is gracious and knowledgeable, always willing to please whether it be a suggestion for a great restaurant or directions to a secret hiking destination....there are too many wonderful things to mention,....my best suggestion is that you go and experience this truly special place for yourself.....we miss you already Five Graces!!....

  • Stayed: September 2005
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12  Thank catgirl42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 18, 2005

Just back from a weekend in Taos (see review on Casa de las Chimneas) and a night in Santa Fe. First visit to the Five Graces, although several to Santa Fe. We stayed in Room 18, a Junior Suite at the back of the courtyard behind the office. Furnishings were unique and we really enjoyed the blend of oriental with southwest. The tile in our bathroom was wonderful to look at just to see all the figures and animals! The Inn did some nice touches: the margaritas with chips and salsa on check-in, the cookies (a little too over done) in the evening with turn down service, and the stocked refrig were all thoughtful, as was the dream catcher left upon checkout with the beautiful story. Wine and cheese in the evening was nice. The staff were very friendly and were great about calling us in advance of our stay for any needs and with restaurant recommendations (see review of Germino) and were happy to do reservations. Location was good to the Plaza and Canyon Rd for shopping. Parking was good and no extra charge. Courtyard is lovely, although some of the figures are falling apart and should be replaced or repaired. Be aware for those who like a firm bed - the beds have a down extra layer pillow top (which you can request be removed). For me, it was too soft so I had problems sleeping - my husband had no problems. Also, don't count on a/c working well. We were lucky in timing and evenings cooled down the room, but not sure I would consider this room (Inn?) during mid-summer. Breakfast was good and ample, although told by others it was the same each morning and some people got tired of it. Overall, would recommend a visit if you're looking for a great location and something different for the senses!

  • Stayed: September 2005
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12  Thank Cheesi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 18, 2005

We had booked a stay at the La Fonda but after trying 2 rooms, I realized I couldn't stay. I was allergic to something in the hotel, it could have been the carpeting.
At any rate,
I called the Inn of the Five Graces at 2 p.m. and they invited me over.
From the moment I arrived, I found out why New Mexico calls itself enchanted.
The Inn is spread over a few small buildings on an almost secret little street. Each turquoise framed window is one of theirs. There are tables with florentine style mosaics in sudden little patios everywhere. They offered me a glass of wine to sip on while they "did all the work". They showed me 3 rooms and let me take my pick. The hotel does have the adobe style architecture but the rooms are globally ecclectic, instantly exotic and homey. It was like staying in a really creative person's home.
There was a fridge in my kitchen, stocked with all sorts of goodies that were included in the price of the room. Before I entered my suite, they had put out salsa and chips on the brilliantly tiled counter and margaritas in the fridge.
They suggested a place for dinner, Los Mayas, that was fun and fabulous. There was a band gently playing bass and guitar, people dancing amongst the twinkling lights on the trees.
After we walked back from dinner, we found freshly made cookies in the bedroom, a dreamcather on the bed and an explanation of the lore of the dreamcatcher, to keep.
We had to drive to Albuquerque to fly home at 5 a.m.. They made fruit salads and added yogurts to the fridge plus a selection of cereals for us to take with us, No extra charge. They have a no tipping policy. They printed our boarding passes. If we thought about it, they had already done it.
I am not a B&B person, but this was an Inn, not a B&B where you have to step over the owners cats. I usually like a hotel, for example, when we were in Taos, we stayed at El Monte Sagado, but this place was truly special.
The staff was sweet and knowledgeable, helpful and psychic ;-}.
If you want to love Santa Fe, stay here and find enchantment.

  • Stayed: September 2005
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14  Thank ktoui1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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