Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Summer Staycation

By Wolf Schneider

Chaise lounges by the jacuzzi at Four Seasons Rancho Encantado today.
Sometimes the perfect Santa Fe day is the hubbub of Indian Market or the new IFAM spin-off market. Sometimes, it’s the relaxation of a spa day-pass at the lavish Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado Santa Fe, sprawling over 57 pristine high-mountain acres.
First was a restorative slow-yoga class led by the enthusiastic Kat Sawyer, who specializes in Vinyasa flow-oriented yoga. We did eagle and warrior poses, and got into a calming, freeing groove. French doors opened onto the courtyard where a breeze rustled through aspens and birds conducted their subdued conversation in the morning sunlight. “It feels like we’re doing yoga on a lanai,” commented Sawyer.

Feeling grounded and at peace, I climbed onto a shiny Precor treadmill with its individual cardio theater for a 200-calorie burn off in the gym, and then wandered into the immaculate spa where I settled into a chaise lounge by the Jacuzzi to peruse this summer’s popular memoir, My Salinger Year. Lunch followed on the patio of the resort’s Terra Restaurant: splendid Santa Fe Style Chilaquiles with scrambled egg whites, smoked bacon, onions, cilantro, tomato, and green chiles, along with a spicy Virgin Mary with fresh horseradish. Gazing out onto the distant Jemez Mountains, I watched visitors pull up in a silver Airstream with Texas plates, a BMW from Colorado, and a Porsche that was New Mexico’s own. “We’re one of the smallest Four Seasons resorts with just 65 rooms. There’s a perception that we’re like Scottsdale, but our high season is summer,” friendly director of sales Frank Lococo told me. “People know about the art here, but they don’t always know about the fly fishing, rafting, mountain hiking, and mountain biking.”

My mission today was relaxation, remember, so I simply spent the rest of the afternoon stretched out on another chaise lounge, this one by the sparkling pool, watching puffy white clouds amass while reading about life as a literary agent. Calm and content.
Photographer: David Alfaya, Taken in Artist Studio: Gregory Lomayesva

Wolf Schneider has been editor in chief of the Santa Fean, editor of Living West, consulting editor of Southwest Art, and also blogs at www.wolfschneiderusa.com.