Taking care of your Loved One Is What We Do BEST!

It's no secret, most of us would like to stay in our own home as we age. Yet, sometimes our loved ones just need a little extra help to remain comfortable at home. That's where Always Best Care can help....we are dedicated to exceeding expectations....always

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Home Care In Santa Fe, NM

Home Care Santa Fe, NM

They say that your golden years are the best years of your life. For most older Americans, that's how it should be - a time to relax, reflect, and live life in a familiar place. After all, senior citizens in the U.S. have worked tirelessly to build a better economy, serve their communities, and raise families.

However, as seniors grow older, completing daily tasks like showering and enjoying activities such as visiting the historic Santa Fe Plaza gets harder without someone by their side. Unfortunately, many older Americans aren't able to rely on their adult children for help. The reality in today's world is that family members do not have the skills or time to dedicate to caring for their parents. That's where Always Best Care Senior Services comes in.

Our in-home care services are for people who prefer to stay at home as they grow older but need ongoing care that family or friends cannot provide. More and more older adults prefer to live far away from long-term, institutionalized facilities and closer to the place where they feel most comfortable - their home. Home care in Santa Fe, NM is a safe, effective way to give your loved ones the care they need when they need it the most.

 In-Home Care Santa Fe, NM

location Service Areas

The Always Best Care Difference

Since 1996, Always Best Care has provided non-medical in-home care for seniors to help them maintain a healthy lifestyle as they get older. We are proud to have helped more than 25,000 seniors maintain higher levels of dignity and respect. We focus on providing seniors with the highest level of in-home care available so that they may live happily and independently.

Unlike some senior care companies, we genuinely want to be included in our clients' lives. We believe that personalized care is always the better option over a "one size fits all" approach. To make sure our senior clients receive the best care possible, we pair them with compassionate caregivers who understand their unique needs. That way, they may provide care accordingly without compromising their wellbeing.

The Always Best Care difference lies in life's little moments - where compassionate care and trustworthy experience come together to help seniors live a fruitful, healthy life. Whether you are an aging adult that can't quite keep up with life's daily tasks or the child of a senior who needs regular in-home services, Always Best Care is here to help.


“I have been with Always Best Care for almost 5 yrs. This is an amazing company. We not only care about our clients but the company also takes care of their employees.”

kristine G.

“Great place to work! Very friendly people and excellent work environment.”

Daisy C.

“Always best care is an extremely fast-growing company and a wonderful place to work! The CEO truly cares about each individual, welcomes creativity, and leads by example. The culture at Always best care is the best I've ever worked for and everyone is authentic and loves what they do. Training processes are great and really help people to feel comfortable in each position. The Supervisors are always willing to help and will take time out of their day to dedicate to helping you if needed.”

Diana O.

“Awesome place to work, friendly staff. Caregivers are the heart of the agency. Our clients really appreciate us.”

Debby T.

“This is a fantastic company of compassionate and hard working people who genuinely care about making a difference in people’s lives. They go above and beyond the call of duty to provide the best quality care to people in the community.”

Natasha G.

“Always best care is an extremely fast-growing company and a wonderful place to work! The CEO truly cares about each individual, welcomes creativity, and leads by example. The culture at Always best care is the best I've ever worked for and everyone is authentic and loves what they do. Training processes are great and really help people to feel comfortable in each position. The Supervisors are always willing to help and will take time out of their day to dedicate to helping you if needed.”

Diana M.

“The service that my mom has received has been a total blessing. The team at Always Best Care Albuquerque has done an amazing job getting my mom the care and attention that she has needed ever since she was discharged from the hospital. My mom had been treated with kindness, care and respect. Highly recommend”

Matt K.

“Great company to work for. Love the staff”

Sherry S.

“Darlene, Sara, Annalee, and Sam have been so awesome ! My live in Mother is 92 years old and if left alone, she would blowup the microwave oven, burn something on the stove top, or toaster oven, let the 3 dogs out 25 times, and feed them snacks they should not have. I work, and with the daily care from Always Best Care, I don't worry over my mother's antics while I'm not home. My wife and I are cyclists and tennis players, and we workout at the gym also. When we have days off from work, we can enjoy hours of endurance training knowing my Mom is receiving comfort, company and care. Thank you Always Best Care ! We love you.”

Gary M.

“I have been working for Always Best Care for 4 1/2 years and that should say it all, but I will elaborate. The company makes sure you are part of a team. The pay is good, and the hours are good. There is an open door policy to make sure the caregivers experience is enhanced by strong support. If your are looking to work with a team that has your best interest and that of client in mind then then don’t hesitate to consider Always Best Care.”

Kathleen A.

“I love working for this company! They are one of the best when it comes too making sure their staff has the support and essentials that are needed for work. Communication is amazing. I can honestly say this is byfar my favorite company I have worked for.”

Lyssa C.

“Working for an in home health care agency committed to providing the best care possible to clients in need, is extremely rewarding work.”

Sara S.

“Amazing place to work for. Highly recommend. Flexible schedule foe caregivers and amazing supportive staff.”

April W.

“I have been working for this company 7 years and in all my time with this company I have been blown away at how much they support the caregivers and there ability to hold the caregivers needs and concerns as high as there clients is why I have been an employee of this company for so long. The owner has truly created an environment that puts the focus of care for the client's and work continuity for the caregiver as her highest priority and this is why I have been truly blessed to be employed with this company.”

Sam S.

“I've been with Always Best Care, Vacaville, about a year and a half and I am very pleased with the service. Their Caregivers are very kind and competent helpers. I would recommend this service to anyone and I have recommend this service to several of my friends.”

Linda B.

“Here's what I posted on Google and Facebook: Life would have been a lot harder without Always Best Care in my life, I have COPD and I am on oxygen full time at level 4 so doing daily chores are out question without my caregiver Ricci Anthony who has been taking tremendous care of me for 3 years this August 2022 and I thank God everyday for him. Every time he arrives he immediately says Hi checks in with me to see how I am doing. As well as, every time he departs I thank him for all that he does for me and I tell him I love him Ricci replies in same likeness. Ricci and I are incredible friends, it’s closer to a dad and son relationship. We’re both strong Christian me. As for Chelsea who does Intake and is the Schedules for Always Best Care equally an amazing individual. Don’t let her young age fool you on the contrary she is a powerhouse. She’s highly a professional, she’s industrious, highly intelligent, she’s a great friend and you can always depend on her to be in support for you. Always Best Care is always best care.”

Michael W.

“ABC is absolutely amazing! The staff is very caring and very friendly. always go above and beyond. They have great communication between Clients and Staff.”

Rebecca G.

“Always Best Care is the best! Darlene and her team are exceptional and provide excellent service to their clients. I thoroughly enjoy working with them. Call them today for all your home care needs!”

Steven J.

“Kathy McClure is a problem solver. She assisted us on Long Term Care Reimbursement and took us thru the process smoothly.”

Patrick M.

“I was very satisfied with the professional care Always Best care provided to my father. Our caregiver was fantastic to work with and always easy to reach when I had any questions. Always Best Care and their staff showed so much care and compassion towards my father, I always knew they were taking excellent care of them. I would highly recommend them to any family.”

Santiago T.

“Nate and Charlene are the best in their field. It has been a pleasure getting to know you and your company.”

Jesse S.

“Dave and his staff go above and beyond with their care. They all take special interest with their clients. Also a very helpful resource in future planning and current ideas. Trust your parents to these people - they will not let you down.”

Bill H.

What is Non-Medical Senior Care in Santa Fe, NM?


Home is where the heart is. While that saying can sound a tad cliche, it is especially true for many seniors living in America. When given a choice, older adults most often prefer to grow older at home. An AARP study found that three out of four adults over the age of 50 want to stay in their homes and communities as they age.


When you begin to think about why, it makes sense. Home offers a sense of security, comfort, and familiarity.


The truth is, as we age, we begin to rely on others for help. When a family is too busy or lives too far away to fulfill this role, in-home senior care is often the best solution. Home care services allow seniors to enjoy personal independence while also receiving trustworthy assistance from a trained caregiver.


At Always Best Care, we offer a comprehensive range of home care services to help seniors stay healthy while they get the help they need to remain independent. As your senior loved one gets older, giving them the gift of senior care is one of the best ways to show your love, even if you live far away.

 Senior Care Santa Fe, NM

Types of Elderly Care in Santa Fe, NM

To give our senior clients the best care possible, we offer a full spectrum of in-home care services:

Personal Care

Personal Care Services

If your senior loved one has specific care needs, our personal care services are a great choice to consider. Personal care includes the standard caregiving duties associated with companion care and includes help with tasks such as dressing and grooming. Personal care can also help individuals with chronic conditions like diabetes.

Common personal care services include assistance with:

  • Eating
  • Mobility Issues
  • Incontinence
  • Bathing
  • Dressing
  • Grooming

Respite Care Santa Fe, NM
Home Helper

Home Helper Services

Sometimes, seniors need helpful reminders to maintain a high quality of life at home. If you or your senior has trouble with everyday tasks like cooking, our home helper services will be very beneficial.

Common home helper care services include assistance with:

  • Medication Reminders
  • Meal Preparation
  • Pet Care
  • Prescription Refills
  • Morning Wake-Up
  • Walking
  • Reading
 Caregivers Santa Fe, NM
Companionship Services

Companionship Services

Using this kind of care is a fantastic way to make life easier for you or your senior loved one. At Always Best Care, our talented caregivers often fill the role of a companion for seniors. That way, older adults can enjoy their favorite local activities, such as visiting Frenchy's Field/Santa Fe River Trail with friends while also receiving the care they need daily or weekly.

Common companionship services include:

  • Grocery Shopping
  • Transportation to Appointments
  • Nutritional Assistance
  • Conversation
  • Planning Outings
  • Completing Errands
  • Transportation to Community
  • Events and Social Outings
Home Care Santa Fe, NM
Respite Care

Respite Care Services

According to AARP, more than 53 million adults living in the U.S. provide care to someone over 50 years old. Unfortunately, these caregivers experience stress, exhaustion, and even depression. Our respite care services help family caregivers address urgent obligations, spend time with their children, and enjoy nearby activities. Perhaps more importantly, respite care gives family members time to recharge and regroup. Taking personal time to de-stress reduces the risk of caregiver burnout. So, if you've always wanted to eat at the local Dinner For Two Restaurant in Santa Fe or visit Oldest House Museum, don't feel bad. Doing so is great for both you and your loved one.

At the end of the day, our goal is to become a valuable part of your senior's daily routine. That way, we may help give them the highest quality of life possible. We know that staying at home is important for your loved one, and we are here to help make sure that is possible.

If you have been on the fence about non-medical home care, there has never been a better time than now to give your senior the care, assistance, and companionship they deserve.

 In-Home Care Santa Fe, NM

Benefits of Home Care in Santa Fe, NM

Always Best Care in-home services are for older adults who prefer to stay at home but need ongoing care that friends and family cannot provide. In-home care is a safe, effective way for seniors to age gracefully in a familiar place and live independent, non-institutionalized lives. The benefits of non-medical home care are numerous. Here are just a few reasons to consider senior care services from Always Best Care:

Always Best Care offers a full array of care options for patients at all levels of health. With our trusted elderly care services, your loved one will receive the level of care necessary for them to enjoy the highest possible quality of life.

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Aging in Place: The Preferred Choice for Most Seniors

While it's true that some seniors have complicated medical needs that prevent them from staying at home, aging in place is often the best arrangement for seniors and their families. With a trusted caregiver, seniors have the opportunity to live with a sense of dignity and do so as they see fit - something that is unavailable to many older people today.

In-home care makes it possible for millions of seniors to age in place every year. Rather than moving to a strange nursing home, seniors have the chance to stay at home where they feel the happiest and most comfortable.

Here are just a few of the reasons why older men and women prefer to age at home:

How much does a senior's home truly mean to them?

A study published by the American Society on Aging found that more than half of seniors say their home's emotional value means more than how much their home is worth in monetary value. It stands to reason, then, that a senior's home is where they want to grow old.

With the help of elderly care in Santa Fe, NM, seniors don't have to age in a sterilized care facility. Instead, they can age gracefully in the place they want to be most: their home. In contrast, seniors who move to a long-term care facility must adapt to new environments, new people, and new systems that the facility implements. At this stage in life, this kind of drastic change can be more harmful than helpful.

Institutional care facilities like nursing homes often put large groups of people together to live in one location. On any given day, dozens of staff members and caregivers run in and out of these facilities. Being around so many new people in a relatively small living environment can be dangerous for a seniors' health and wellbeing. When you consider that thousands of seniors passed away in nursing homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, opting for in-home care is often a safer, healthier choice for seniors.

Aging in place has been shown to improve seniors' quality of life, which helps boost physical health and also helps insulate them from viral and bacterial risks found in elderly living facilities.

For many seniors, the ability to live independently with assistance from a caregiver is a priceless option. With in-home care, seniors experience a higher level of independence and freedom - much more so than in other settings like a nursing home. When a senior has the chance to age in place, they get to live life on their own terms, inside the house that they helped make into a home. More independence means more control over their personal lives, too, which leads to increased levels of fulfillment, happiness, and personal gratification. Over time, these positive feelings can manifest into a healthier, longer life.

More independence, a healthier life, and increased comfort are only a few benefits of aging in place. You have to take into consideration the role of cost and convenience. Simply put, it's usually easier and more affordable to help seniors age in place than it is to move them into an institutional care facility. According to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, seniors who age in the comfort of their homes can save thousands of dollars per month.

In-home care services from Always Best Care, for instance, are often less expensive than long-term solutions, which can cost upwards of six figures per year. To make matters worse, many residential care facilities are reluctant to accept long-term care insurance and other types of payment assistance.

With Always Best Care's home care services, seniors and their families have a greater level of control over their care plans. In-home care gives seniors the chance to form a bond with a trusted caregiver and also receive unmatched care that is catered to their needs. In long-term care facilities, seniors and their loved ones have much less control over their care plan and have less of a say in who provides their care.

 Elderly Care Santa Fe, NM

Affordable Care

In-home care is a valuable resource that empowers seniors to age in place on their own terms. However, a big concern for many families and their loved ones is how much in-home care costs. If you're worried that in-home care is too expensive, you may be pleasantly surprised to learn that it is one of the most affordable senior care arrangements available.

Typically, hiring an Always Best Care in-home caregiver for a few hours a week is more affordable than sending your loved one to a long-term care facility. This is true even for seniors with more complex care needs.

At Always Best Care, we will work closely with you and your family to develop a Care Plan that not only meets your care needs, but your budget requirements, too. Once we discover the level of care that you or your senior need, we develop an in-home care plan that you can afford.

In addition to our flexible care options, families should also consider the following resources to help offset potential home care costs:

If your loved one qualifies, Medicaid may help reduce in-home care costs. Review your NM's Medicaid program laws and benefits, and make sure your senior's financial and medical needs meet Medicaid eligibility requirements.
Attendance and aid benefits through military service can cover a portion of the costs associated with in-home care for veterans and their spouses.
Many senior care services like in-home care are included in long-term care insurance options. Research different long-term care solutions to find a plan that provides coverage for senior care.
Home care can be included as part of a senior's private insurance plan. Read over your loved one's insurance policy carefully or speak with their insurance provider to determine if in-home care is covered.
Depending on the life insurance plan, you may be able to apply your policy toward long-term care. You may be able to use long-term-care coverage to help pay for in-home elderly care.
 Senior Care Santa Fe, NM

Compassionate Care. Trusted Caregivers.

When you or your senior loved one needs assistance managing daily tasks at home, finding a qualified caregiver can be challenging. It takes a special kind of person to provide reliable care for your senior loved one. However, a caregiver's role involves more than meal preparation and medication reminders. Many seniors rely on their caregivers for companionship, too.

Our companion care services give seniors the chance to socialize in a safe environment and engage in activities at home. These important efforts boost morale and provide much-needed relief from repetitive daily routines. A one-on-one, engaging conversation can sharpen seniors' minds and give them something in which to be excited.

At Always Best Care, we only hire care providers that we would trust to care for our own loved ones. Our senior caregivers in Santa Fe, NM understand how important it is to listen and communicate with their seniors. A seemingly small interaction, like a short hug goodbye, can make a major difference in a senior's day. Instead of battling against feelings of isolation, seniors begin to look forward to seeing their caregiver each week.

Understanding the nuances of senior care is just one of the reasons why our care providers are so great at their job.

Unlike some senior care companies, our caregivers must undergo extensive training before they work for Always Best Care. In addition, our caregivers receive ongoing training throughout the year. This training ensures that their standard of care matches up to the high standards we've come to expect. During this training, they will brush up on their communication skills, safety awareness, and symptom spotting. That way, your loved one receives the highest level of non-medical home care from day one.

Assisted Living Referral Services

While it's true that many seniors prefer to age at home, sometimes in-home care isn't the best fit. For those seniors and their families, choosing an assisted living facility makes more sense. Unfortunately, finding the optimal care facility is easier said than done in today's day and age. That's when Always Best Care's assisted living referral services begin to make a lot of sense.

Assisted living is a form of housing intended for seniors who require varying degrees of medical and personal attention. Accommodations may include single rooms, apartments, or shared living arrangements. Assisted living communities are typically designed to resemble a home-like environment and are physically constructed to encourage the independence of residents.

Respite Care Santa Fe, NM

At assisted living communities, seniors receive help with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, and eating. They may also benefit from coordination of services with outside healthcare providers, and monitoring of resident activities to ensure their health, safety, and well-being. Caregivers who work at assisted living communities can also provide medication administration and personal care services for older adults.

Other services offered within assisted living communities can include some or all of the following:

  • Housekeeping
  • Laundry
  • Recreational Activities
  • Social Outings
  • Emergency Medical Response
  • Medication Monitoring
  • Family Visitation
  • Personal Care
 Caregivers Santa Fe, NM

At Always Best Care, our representatives can match your senior's emotional, physical, and financial needs with viable assisted living communities nearby. Results are based on comparative data, so you can select the best choice for you or your loved one.

Always Best Care works closely with local senior living communities to gain valuable knowledge that we then use to help seniors and their loved ones make informed decisions. This information can include basic care and rent, resident availability, and services provided. Because Always Best Care is compensated by these communities, we provide senior living referral services at no extra cost to you.

Some of the most popular assisted living communities to consider in our area include the following:

  • Pacifica Senior Living Santa Fe
  • Brookdale Santa Fe
  • Sierra Vista at Vista Living Care
  • MorningStar Assisted Living & Memory Care of Santa Fe
  • Kingston Residence of Santa Fe
  • The Montecito of Santa Fe
Home Care Santa Fe, NM

For many seniors, moving into a senior living community revolves around how and when they want to make a transition to more involved care. Some seniors are more proactive about transitioning to independent living. Others choose to remain home until their care needs or other requirements are satisfied. Remember - our staff is here to help. Contact our office today to learn more about assisted living communities and how we can find a facility that exceeds your expectations.

 In-Home Care Santa Fe, NM

Taking the First Step with Always Best Care

The first step in getting quality in-home care starts with a personal consultation with an experienced Always Best Care Care Coordinator. This initial consultation is crucial for our team to learn more about you or your elderly loved one to discover the level of care required. Topics of this consultation typically include:

A discussion of your needs and how our trained caregivers can offer assistance in the most effective way


A draft of your care plan, which includes highly detailed notes and a framework for the care that you or your senior will receive


Discuss payment options and help coordinate billing with your insurance provider


Our caregivers are trained to spot changes that clients exhibit, like mental and physical decline. As your trusted senior care company, we will constantly assess and update your Care Plan to meet any new emotional, intellectual, physical, and emotional needs.

If you have never considered in-home care before, we understand that you and your family may have concerns about your Care Plan and its Care Coordinator. To help give you peace of mind, know that every team member and caregiver must undergo comprehensive training before being assigned to a Care Plan.

At the end of the day, we only hire the best of the best at Always Best Care. Whether you need home care in Santa Fe, NM 24-hours a day or only need a respite for a couple of hours, we are here to serve you.

When you're ready, we encourage you to contact your local Always Best Care representative to set up a Care Consultation. Our Care Coordinators would be happy to meet with you in person to get to know you better, discuss your needs, and help put together a personalized Care Plan specific to your needs.

 Elderly Care Santa Fe, NM

Latest News in Santa Fe, NM

Wooden farolitos celebrate 100th year of Zozobra

SANTA FE, N.M. —Whether you call it luminaria or farolito, glowing paper bags are recognized all over the state.However the brown paper bag is not waterproof, so FS2 Supply Company came up with their version.“They are made of a composite wood and so they are a little more sturdy. You can leave them out year-round, they are never going to crumple or fall apart,” FS2 Supply Co. local artist Anna Martinez said.This year the farolito has a twist Zozobra is engraved on the front....


Whether you call it luminaria or farolito, glowing paper bags are recognized all over the state.

However the brown paper bag is not waterproof, so FS2 Supply Company came up with their version.

“They are made of a composite wood and so they are a little more sturdy. You can leave them out year-round, they are never going to crumple or fall apart,” FS2 Supply Co. local artist Anna Martinez said.

This year the farolito has a twist Zozobra is engraved on the front.

Burning of Zozobra: View the latest headlines and previous burnings of Zozobra

This ahead of the celebration 100 years in the making kicking off the Zozobra Centennial Gala on April 6th.

The annual Santa Fe tradition is close to Eric Griego the owner of FS2 Supply Company.

“I'm the head of the arm crew. My boys and another close family of ours actually built the arms for Zozobra,” Griego said.

Griego and the Kiwanis Club worked together to create this commemorative farolito for the Zozobra centennial gala.

“The inside is illuminated and Zozobra every year goes up in flames,” Griego said.

Keeping with the tradition of dispelling gloom, the process of making one of these takes time. First, multiple designs are cut by laser.

“It's a really precise cut front and back. The cool thing is we end up with a little Zozobra from the center of the piece,” Martinez said.

Then the pieces take shape. After dozens are cut, they come together much like a jigsaw puzzle completing the farolito.

When illuminated, it gives the sense that Zozobra is on fire

“It's such a unique piece of the celebration that they haven't had before,” Martinez said.

With the process, nothing is wasted, and the cutout becomes a Christmas ornament.

Bringing together what it means to be a New Mexican.

“Our tagline is literally to be the culture and so the tradition of Zozobra and Zozobra being a part of our culture is really fitting,” Griego said.

Reminding Nuevo Mexicanos of the excitement that comes every fall.

“The crowd gets so riled up in it, and everybody is chanting ‘Burn him! "Burn him!’" Griego said. “It's a great, exciting event to attend, but there's a greater meaning behind it.”

Griego is reminded of the importance of this century-old tradition.

"Spending time with my boys and teaching them how participating in community service is important," Griego said.

There are still tickets available for the Centennial Gala, all proceeds will support youth programs in our state.

If you can't make it, you can still get your hands on a farolito the clubs is selling them in the Zozobra store starting May 1st.

KOAT is the only place to watch the 100th burning of Zozobra live on August 30th 2024.

Santa Fe County says water supplies will last but buys more rights for $1.6 million

Mar. 20—Santa Fe County's 4,100-plus water customers should rest assured: The county can provide the water they need "through 2040 and beyond."At least, that's the picture Utilities Director Paul Choman recently presented to the County Commission."In summary, I'd just like to comfort everybody by stating this, emphatically," he said: "The county water utility has sufficient water rights and capacity to meet current demand and will have sufficient capacity to meet projected demand through 2040 and ...

Mar. 20—Santa Fe County's 4,100-plus water customers should rest assured: The county can provide the water they need "through 2040 and beyond."

At least, that's the picture Utilities Director Paul Choman recently presented to the County Commission.

"In summary, I'd just like to comfort everybody by stating this, emphatically," he said: "The county water utility has sufficient water rights and capacity to meet current demand and will have sufficient capacity to meet projected demand through 2040 and beyond, provided that it continues to make prudent and necessary investments in water rights, infrastructure and other projects."

In other words, the county should more regularly buy water rights and keep tabs on county, city and federal infrastructure projects to bolster its water supply, Choman said.

He assumed the role of county utilities director in July following former Director John Dupuis' departure to the city of Santa Fe.

In a recent estimation of county water supply, he projected the county could buy 680 acre-feet of additional annual water rights by 2040, or about a 29% increase in its existing water rights.

The County Commission headed down that path at its March 12 meeting, unanimously approving a $1.6 million purchase of about 44.8 acre-feet per year of water rights from developer Suerte del Sur.

The cost includes an $80,600 commission to broker Bogle Realty and comes to $36,000 per acre-foot, or about 326,000 gallons.

Santa Fe County last bought water rights about three years ago for nearly half that price — about $19,000 per acre-foot — but the price of water has increased many-fold over the past few decades and will probably continue to increase as demand rises, the county's contract water attorney, John Utton, told commissioners.

"The city is going away from acquiring water rights," Utton said. "They're getting very difficult and expensive."

County spokeswoman Olivia Romo declined to allow a reporter to interview Utton for this story.

Choman called $36,000 per acre-foot a "very fair market price" for Rio Grande water rights dating before 1907, when New Mexico's Territorial Legislature passed laws that set the groundwork for the state's water regulations today. Pre-1907 rights hold seniority over more recently acquired rights if there's not enough water to go around.

A series of droughts — which resulted in a "critical and immediate need for water," according to a county water management plan from 2009 — in part spurred the city and county of Santa Fe to boost their water supplies over the past 20 years.

The county's water, like the city's, now primarily comes from surface flows diverted from the Rio Grande by the Buckman Direct Diversion. That water is pumped uphill 11 miles to the Buckman water treatment plant west of Santa Fe.

The diverted water includes both "native" Rio Grande water and San Juan-Chama Project water delivered to the Rio Grande via the Rio Chama from the San Juan River in southern Colorado through a series of tunnels and diversions.

Before the city and county collaborated to design and build the Buckman Direct Diversion, which came online in 2011, the city supplied the county with water, and "much of that was groundwater," Romo wrote in email.

The diversion has since allowed the overused regional aquifer to recover.

Under a mutually beneficial "shared pool" agreement, the city and county can essentially freely trade each other's native and San Juan-Chama water flowing through the Buckman Direct Diversion.

Under another agreement, the county can also buy a chunk of water from the city each year, 1,350 acre-feet, but has considered that a "backup supply" because it is expensive, Choman wrote in a memo to commissioners.

In total, including the "backup supply," the county and developers have rights to about 4,055 acre-feet per year for county use, not including the recently authorized purchase, Choman noted.

Meanwhile, demand from county customers in 2023, at 1,513 acre-feet, sat at roughly one-third of the county's supply.

On paper, the county has committed to provide customers 96% or 97% of its total supply, or 3,927 acre-feet per year. However, that does not reflect what the county must deliver because it includes requests from developers for projects that may never materialize, Choman said.

He projected the county should have a healthy excess supply of water even if demand from county customers increases 7% per year through 2040, a "very aggressive" estimate or "worst-case scenario," he said, that puts estimated demand at 4,822 acre-feet per year in 2040.

That's in part because the construction of the Pojoaque Basin Regional Water System, serving communities on a stretch from Española to Santa Fe, could substantially increase the county's water supply, Choman said.

The water system is a result of decades of water-rights litigation, known as Aamodt, and will supply up to 4,000 acre-feet per year from the Rio Grande to the Nambé, Tesuque, San Ildefonso and Pojoaque pueblos and other county customers in the Pojoaque Valley.

The county may also be able to bolster water supplies by enhancing reuse: Many utilities are looking into reuse "trying to get two times or more out of their water rights," Utton told commissioners.

In Santa Fe County, that would require expanding a treatment plant south of the city, near the Penitentiary of New Mexico. It opened in 2022 and can treat up to 500,000 gallons of water per day, Romo wrote in an email.

Water now treated by the plant is "just below" potable, Choman said.

A wastewater treatment master plan, which will include designs for an addition to the plant to ensure treated water is potable, will finish later this year, he said.

The city of Santa Fe's proposed San Juan-Chama return flow project also would benefit the county utility.

The project would construct a 17-mile pipeline to send effluent from the city's wastewater treatment plant to the Rio Grande. Santa Fe County would be entitled to 7% of the water reclaimed, Choman wrote.

The pipeline has sparked some controversy, not only because it would reduce flows in the lower Santa Fe River, which now receives effluent, but also because critics say the city's aging wastewater plant would need substantial upgrades to prevent tainted water from entering the Rio Grande.

Over the next 12 months, the county utility division will develop a 40-year water plan and, in conjunction with the city, a water resource plan extending to 2100, Choman said.

Those plans will address broader concerns about how the area — and private well owners — would fare in an unexpected event such as a severe drought, he said.

24th Internal Medicine Annual Update and Review

A six-day educational course led by Dr. Sanjeev Arora (The University of New Mexico), Dr. Sanjiv Chopra, Dr. Martin Abrahamson and Dr. Mark Zeidel (Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, affiliate of Harvard Medical School).Join UsLa Fonda on the Plaza (Santa Fe, NM)NOW Offering: Maintenance of Certification points for the American Board of Internal MedicineRegister ...

A six-day educational course led by Dr. Sanjeev Arora (The University of New Mexico), Dr. Sanjiv Chopra, Dr. Martin Abrahamson and Dr. Mark Zeidel (Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, affiliate of Harvard Medical School).

Join Us

La Fonda on the Plaza (Santa Fe, NM)

NOW Offering: Maintenance of Certification points for the American Board of Internal Medicine

Register Now or Contact Us

This course aims to provide a comprehensive review of the most important advances in internal medicine.

It is directed at the level of the internist and family practitioner, and will also be useful for residents. The emphasis will be placed on progress that has been made in pathophysiology and clinical management in the most common disorders seen by the internist and family practitioner.

Each of the major subspecialties will be covered including cardiology, endocrinology, gastroenterology, hematology, infectious disease, nephrology, women’s health, oncology, pulmonary disease, obesity and nutrition, and rheumatology.

Special Symposia:

Keynote and Special Lectures:

Much of the material will be presented in lecture format by the best teachers and clinicians from two major medical centers. In addition, each specialty will have a case-based session using an interactive wireless Audience Response System that will be present on your desk. This system will allow you (anonymously) to test your knowledge in the different areas of medicine.

Registration Fees

Registration includes: academic sessions, daily continental breakfast and refreshment breaks, and access to the course syllabus online.

Early Bird Registration: (For participants who register on or before Sept. 22, postmarked if mailing)

Regular Registration: (after Sept. 22)

Register Online

Alternate Ways to Register: Until Oct. 12, we accept credit card payments (Visa/Mastercard) by phone (505-272-6554) or fax (505-272-6906).

Pre-registration will be confirmed; confirm your registration prior to making travel arrangements as minimum and maximum numbers have been established for this course.

Cancellation Policy: The Office of Continuing Education will refund tuition, minus a $100 administrative fee, if you cancel, in writing, before Sept. 29. No refunds will be issued after Sept. 29.

Contact Us: With questions, email us.

Conference Hotel: La Fonda on the Plaza

Reservation Cut-Off: Sept. 25, 2023

Traditional Room Rate: $259 (single/double); limited standard rooms are available for $249

Reserve Your Hotel Room Online

Alternate Method of Reservation: By phone 800-523-5002, option# 1; group code: 985913

This Hotel Bar In Santa Fe Has One Of New Mexico’s Best Wine And Spirits Collections

All wine and beverage directors, at least those with a modicum of ambition and passion for the job, wish they had permission to line their cellars and bars with the best of the best. So, when a hotel owner shares that level of enthusiasm for fermented and distilled liquids, great things happen. Such is the case at the Rosewood Inn of the Anasazi ...

All wine and beverage directors, at least those with a modicum of ambition and passion for the job, wish they had permission to line their cellars and bars with the best of the best. So, when a hotel owner shares that level of enthusiasm for fermented and distilled liquids, great things happen. Such is the case at the Rosewood Inn of the Anasazi located just off the historic main plaza in downtown Santa Fe, New Mexico.

For context, Santa Fe is a drinking town. There’s a tourism board branded margarita trail. Several craft beer and cocktail bars. A tasting room for New Mexican winery Gruet, America’s answer to affordable delicious traditional method sparkling wine. It’s not a small feat to be considered one of the best spots for sipping libations in the state. What adds an element of singularity to the Anasazi Bar and Lounge, however, is the city itself, which harbors strong ties to its Mexican heritage, notably Oaxaca and Jalisco. The hotel has inherited this same dedication to elevating that connection, and for spirits enthusiasts, that means tequila and mezcal. For wine lovers, the ownership’s penchant for fine and rare wines led to a dedicated wine room and serious cellar, all of which shows up on the wine list in the dining room.

According to a spokesperson for the hotel, the dedication to investing in fine wine and liquor began five years ago, with decisions on what to buy made with the food and beverage team in collaboration with suppliers. Because of limited access to certain quantities of wines and spirits, they endeavored into partnerships with trusted vendors to acquire allocated bottles. The results paid off with labels such as Kistler, Dominus Estate, Opus One, Chateau Palmer, Chateau Lafite Rothschild, Chateau Petrus, and Cheval Blanc gracing the menu.

One of the most expensive wines on the list is a Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru Coche Dury 2015 for a whopping $10,500. Fortunately, wine lovers on a budget can mine the superb “end of bin” list with Spottswoode, Cuvaison, and Kosta Browne offered at extremely attractive prices.


At the same time the wine program began in earnest, the Anasazi team started expanding its tequila program into what it is today—Santa Fe’s only tequila table. After seeing the success of the tequila tasting experiences offered to guests, the property added mezcal to its menus and tastings.

Today, the bar offers a robust menu of tequila and mezcal flights. Themes range from Anejos Favoritos (aged favorites), Celebridades (celebrity bottlings), to Lo Mejor de Lo Mejor (the best of the best.) For those keen to explore mezcal specifically, the Only Oaxaca flight provides an excellent overview of the varieties of agave used in its production as well as a chance to compare how they differ in taste, much like comparing varieties of wine grapes. The property also has several bottles of the vaunted brand Clase Azul, first lauded for its tequila, now crafting some of the most exquisite mezcals in the country, though the beauty of mezcal is its diverse, small-production, hand-crafted nature, which perfectly echoes the vibe of Santa Fe.

Guests with a preference for brown spirits will soon have their wishes met with the introduction of a bourbon tasting experience. The team has spent the past 12 months purchasing top-quality and rare bourbons and will soon launch this curated collection with guests. Currently, one experience is available to book on the website: a review of American whiskey including bourbon and rye.

Of course, don’t let the bar stop you from exploring the deeper recesses of the hotel. Consistently ranked as the city’s top property, the best way to enjoy its wealth of characterful spaces replete with aromatic wood-burning fireplaces, is to book a room. Occupying a classical revival pueblo building, guest rooms flow through the building with the contours of the softly curved exterior.

Each room features traditional adobe architecture of the American Southwest, including pine beam viga ceilings, kiva-style gas fireplace, antique Navajo rugs, local pueblo pottery, colorful handwoven textiles, and organic toiletries. Humidifiers help with the excessively dry air, especially in winter. Larger, deluxe rooms have balconies and patios. While the rooms are cozy – literally, they’re 350-550 SF, with the largest Anasazi Suite running 1010 SF—you’re in Santa Fe to experience the city or at least the hotel’s atmospheric common spaces, a sun-dappled library and living room. Just around the corner sits the Plaza and Palace of the Governors, where Native American artisans sell their handmade jewelry and crafts each day.

The hotel lacks a spa and likely does not have the footprint to incorporate one in the future. However, Santa Fe has several fantastic options, including the Japanese-inspired Ten Thousand Waves. Guests insistent on pampering in the property can arrange in-room massages and aromatherapy, or use the small but well-equipped gym. Perhaps the best part of being a guest, however, is the silver coin margarita tokens received at check-in. These coins can be redeemed at the bar for a complimentary margarita – which is exactly where you’ll find the rest of the guests.

Think you know Santa Fe? Get away from downtown.

Wine bars. Markets. Contemporary art. Underneath the adobe, Santa Fe has a new pulse. SANTA FE, N.M. — La Mama, a natural wine bar and restaurant set in a 1910s craftsman bungalow, doesn’t feel like it belongs here. Unlike most of the city’s adobe-clad hangouts, the space is spare and whitewashed. Margaritas and chiles are nowhere to be found on the menu.“How does this city look the same but feel so different?” said a yo...

Wine bars. Markets. Contemporary art. Underneath the adobe, Santa Fe has a new pulse.

SANTA FE, N.M. — La Mama, a natural wine bar and restaurant set in a 1910s craftsman bungalow, doesn’t feel like it belongs here. Unlike most of the city’s adobe-clad hangouts, the space is spare and whitewashed. Margaritas and chiles are nowhere to be found on the menu.

“How does this city look the same but feel so different?” said a young woman to her friend as they sat beside me sharing a bottle of piquette. “It seems more lived-in than it did before.”

It’s true. In the past few years, there has been a sea change beneath the city’s sun-baked exterior, which appears stuck in time because of strict building ordinances that prioritize rehabilitation over new construction.

Because of this facade, a downtown that primarily caters to visitors and local haunts scattered around its periphery, it can sometimes be hard to shake the feeling that you live in a “destination.” That and the fact that the mountain town of about 85,000 people has always punched above its weight, attracting some 2 million visitors a year.

But new developments have decentralized Santa Fe, drawing focus away from its Spanish colonial plaza and its posh, gallery-lined Canyon Road. The rise of the Railyard district has created an alternate epicenter, and new spots there and elsewhere have redefined the food and drinks scene. The latest hotel stays, full of Southwestern charm, still nod to what has long made Santa Fe a popular place to relax.

Here are just a few reasons to visit — or return to — the artsy city.

In 1880, a train pulled into the city for the first time, connecting it to the rest of the country. For decades, the area around the depot boomed with development, before gradually falling behind other interests. In the early aughts, Santa Fe sought to revitalize the area and turn it into a commercial center, and 20 years later, the Railyard district has finally come into its own.

“It’s become both a place for community and an incredible destination for visitors seeking culture,” says Louis Grachos, director of Site Santa Fe, one of the Railyard’s first arts institutions.

Since the late ’90s, the area has hosted the city’s famed markets — spotlighting farmers, eclectic artists and artisans — and has long seemed on the cusp of becoming a rare hub for residents.

But it’s only in the past few years that the micro-neighborhood has filled out. Its new and repurposed spaces house design stores, galleries and restaurants. There’s also the Sky Railway, a refurbished diesel locomotive created by Game of Thronesauthor and Santa Fe resident George R.R. Martin that takes visitors on a scenic ride toward the old Western town of Lamy.

A day at the Railyard could also include an afternoon of gallery hopping, followed by a stop at the new distillery As Above So Below. Predinner cocktails there incorporate local botanicals such as juniper and pinyon.

“It’s like you’re tasting New Mexico,” says Virgil Ortiz, an artist from Cochiti Pueblo who unwinds at the industrial space between work on an ongoing series about the Pueblo Revolt of 1680. Part of that project is on display at House of Eternal Return, a wonderland of immersive, fun-house-like exhibits run by the arts collective Meow Wolf.

Once you’ve whetted your appetite, you can have dinner, catch a band and order one of the 60 New Mexican beers on tap at Nuckolls Brewing, a long-awaited gathering place that opened in July. Originally a 1920s-era meatpacking facility, the building has been renovated with clever, historical nods at every turn, such as railroad tracks repurposed as fencing and floors made of wood salvaged from a nearby wildfire.

Outside, on its expansive beer garden, are outposts of longtime local haunts Jambo Cafe, with its homestyle African-fusion dishes, and a pizza truck by El Farol, one of the oldest restaurants in Santa Fe.

The city has no shortage of cultural draws, and beyond its more than 250 galleries are contemporary institutions such as the Institute of American Indian Arts’ downtown outpost and the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum. But the fact that most reside in traditional adobe buildings has meant hosting collections suited to limited spaces.

When the New Mexico Museum of Art began outgrowing its early-20th-century building in the Plaza, the idea of Vladem Contemporary took root. The annex space, which opened in September, is dedicated to large-scale, performance and multimedia works that have been created after 1980.

The inaugural exhibition focuses on pieces inspired by New Mexico’s pervasive sunlight: a room-scale shadow-play work by Nancy Holt, another chapter of Ortiz’s “Revolt 1680/2180” series.

But you don’t have to step inside to experience it. An LED installation by Albuquerque artist Leo Villareal is displayed on the breezeway connecting the museum to the train depot, and window boxes along the building’s exterior showcase the works of emerging artists.

Santa Fe’s thriving happy-hour scene goes beyond the Railyard — if you know where to look.

The beloved Albuquerque hotel Los Poblanos has launched an outpost of its farm shop near the plaza, in a 1930s-era gas station that for decades housed various banks. Bar Norte is a favorite of Amy Denet Deal, a Diné designer whose new Canyon Road boutique, 4Kinship, is the first Native-owned clothing store in the city. The intimate tasting room showcases the hotel’s recent turn to distilling gin, using botanicals its farm and products are known for: lavender, pinyon resin, rose, violet, hawthorn and chamomile.

Another Albuquerque import, Vara Vinoteca, has just as much New Mexican heritage. One of its winemakers, Laurent Gruet, is part of the family who owns the renowned Gruet Winery. Set within an adobe building off the plaza, the spare space carries Vara’s beloved sparkling wines, house-distilled spirits and a menu of tapas. (Order the Silverhead Brut, sweet vermouth and fried artichokes.)

The hotel scene has gotten an upgrade, too. The buzziest opening has been Bishop’s Lodge (from $899), a property that has had many iterations, including as the home of Santa Fe’s first archbishop (the chapel he built still stands), a boarding school and a residence of the Pulitzer family.

With 317 acres bordering Santa Fe National Forest, the hotel feels a world apart from town, despite being only five minutes away. It also leans heavy on New Mexican motifs, with a healing-arts studio, an Orvis-run fly-fishing shop that provides complimentary casting sessions at an on-site pond, and an updated Southwestern look.

A trip to the high desert isn’t complete without a soak in a natural hot spring. For the resort route, my favorite is Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs Resort & Spa (from $209).

An hour north of town, the hotel’s nine mineral-spring pools sit in the shadow of sunset-hued cliffs and attract just as many locals as visitors. And its 65 rooms, including vintage trailers and lavish suites that come with private pools, offer options at every price point.

Erin Vivid Riley is a writer and editor based in Santa Fe.


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