Traveling with the Family? Santa Fe's Best Family-Friendly Lodging Options

Photo courtesy of Fort Marcy Hotel Suites
Photo courtesy of Santa Fe Sage Inn
Photo courtesy of Fairmont Heritage Place
Photo courtesy of Courtyard by Marriott Santa Fe
Photo courtesy of Inn of the Governors
Photo courtesy of Fort Marcy Hotel Suites
Photo courtesy of Drury Plaza Hotel in Santa Fe
Photo courtesy of Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort and Spa
Photo courtesy of Steve Collins
By Billie Frank, Santa Fe Local Expert

Traveling with the family? Santa Fe offers something traveling families lodging choices ranging from full service resorts and hotels to budget options. There’s something here for every traveling family. There are also great choices for multi-generational getaways that will please the whole group including kids, parents, grandparents, siblings, aunts, uncles and cousins. Researching before booking will ensure that you find the best place to meet everyone’s needs. What’s important to you? Do you want on-site kid’s activities, children’s programs, a pool, game-room or a babysitter? Check out Bishop’s Lodge Ranch Resort & Spa. Is in-house dining important to you? Opt for a stay at a place with a restaurant. Before booking, ask the reservationist if their property has the family-friendly-features you’re looking for. The general rule of thumb: the closer to downtown you stay, the higher the rates. There are exceptions including the value-added Santa Fe Sage Inn. Budget-conscious travelers will find an array of national chains out on Cerrillos Road. It’s a drive to the historic area, but you’ll find family-friendly restaurants close by making dining with the kids easier. Family lodging strategies that work: rent a condo-type unit with separate bedrooms; book a suite (junior suites often offer two beds and a pull-out sofa); ask for connecting or adjoining rooms. With kids, the more space, the better. Length of your trip is also another factor to consider. What works for two days may not work for a week.

 

9. Fort Marcy Hotel Suites
Photo courtesy of Fort Marcy Hotel Suites

Fort Marcy Suites, minutes from the historic Santa Fe Plaza, offers condo-style units that are great for family vacations. For just about the price of a small downtown hotel room you can have the luxury of a kitchen, a spacious living room and separate bedrooms. Many of the southwest-style units even come with wood burning 'kiva' fireplaces. S'mors anyone? One bedroom units offer 800 square feet of living space and two bathrooms. Two bedroom condos have up to 1,150 square and the three-bedroom places offer 1,350 square feet. Both have 2.5 baths. Each apartment has either a patio or private balcony. Kids can enjoy a bit of freedom on the complex's nine acres. There's an indoor heated lap-pool as well as a picnic area with a gazebo. The hillside location offers great views and easy access to downtown.

8. Santa Fe Sage Inn
Photo courtesy of Santa Fe Sage Inn

Looking for great rates within walking distance to the Santa Fe Plaza? The Santa Fe Sage Inn is about 15 minutes away. And, they are just across the road from the Railyard District with its park, the Santa Fe Farmers Market, shops and dining. They are also right next to Whole Foods for shopping convenience. They also offer free shuttle service to the Plaza and other nearby attractions such as The Santa Fe Children's Museum. Kids (and their parents) will love the Fresh Start breakfasts including 'make your own waffles,' hard-boiled eggs, bagels with cream cheese, cold cereal, assorted yogurts and fresh fruit. Fueled for the day, ask the front desk staff for suggestions about what to do. There are also scavenger hunts for the kids and a selection of movies and games for family nights at the hotel. Traveling with Fido? He can stay too.

7. Fairmont Heritage Place, El Corazon de Santa Fe
Photo courtesy of Fairmont Heritage Place

Renting a condo or house is a great option for family vacations. Looking for the benefits of a condo living combined with hotel amenities? Check out Fairmont Heritage Place, El Corazon de Santa Fe. The property, a division of Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, is part fractional ownership, part full ownership, and part vacation rentals. Opt for a one, two or three bedroom unit. All have a fully-equipped designer kitchen, dining area, living room with fireplace and washer/dryer. Hotel amenities include daily concierge service. If you want restaurant recommendations, concert tickets, a sitter, day-trip suggestions, they're there to assist. Some additional perks: a restaurant discount program at participating eateries, use of the pool at La Posada de Santa Fe for a small fee, evening wine and cheese receptions with lemonade, cookies and carrot sticks the kids and a small video library and board games. It's a recipe for a perfect family getaway.

6. Courtyard by Marriott Santa Fe
Photo courtesy of Courtyard by Marriott Santa Fe

Downtown Santa Fe hotels can be a bit pricy. If you're looking for better rates many chain hotels have outposts on Cerrillos Road, the city's major commercial strip. The recently renovated Marriott Courtyard offers a convenient location close to family-friendly restaurants and a short ride from attractions such as the Santa Fe Children's Museum and El Rancho de las Golondrinas. The spacious, redesigned lobby features media pods, a popular feature for families. These personal entertainment areas feature comfortable seating and individual TV screens a with 'kid friendly' channel line-up. There's also a large indoor saline pool (with two whirlpools), and outdoor patio equipped with ample seating and a grill for family cookouts. Fire pits scattered throughout the property are perfect for making after-dinner s'mores. Ask the front desk for the ingredients.

5. Inn of the Governors
Photo courtesy of Inn of the Governors

The Inn of the Governors, located a few blocks, strives to offer guests a positive experience along with value-added perks. Located just a few short blocks from the historic Santa Fe Plaza, walking to most downtown places is easy. They're also just steps away from good family dining options including Del Charro, right in the hotel. Their year-round heated pool is a popular spot for kids and their parents to hang out. The inn offers a good selection of family-friendly accommodations including connecting rooms and mini-suites that can sleep up to six and come with two TV s. Value-added options include a free breakfast buffet daily offering both hot and cold foods,. a daily tea and sherry hour featuring biscochitos, New Mexico's Official State Cookie and free parking (a rarity in Santa Fe's downtown hotels). When traveling with a family, these perks can make a difference.

4. Las Palomas Santa Fe
Photo courtesy of Fort Marcy Hotel Suites

If you want to be close to downtown but away from the action, Las Palomas is a great option. This unique historic property, nestled on a historic street west of the Plaza, offers one, two and three bedroom condos and casitas which will comfortably accommodate your family. All units (except for studios) have full kitchens and wood burning fireplaces. But don't worry about stocking breakfast foods, there's a deluxe continental breakfast served daily in the reception building. Kids will enjoy books stocked especially for them as well as board games and kid-friendly videos. Want to take a swim? Head over to Las Palomas' sister property, The Hotel Santa Fe The Hacienda and Spa for a swim in their outdoor pool. There's a complementary shuttle to the Plaza or the Santa Fe Children's Museum. A $5 resort fee covers breakfast, parking, Wi-Fi and pool use.

3. Drury Plaza Hotel in Santa Fe
Photo courtesy of Drury Plaza Hotel in Santa Fe

The Drury Plaza Hotel is the newest hotel in Santa Fe and the first to be built in the downtown area in decades. It's located in the repurposed old St. Vincent's Hospital a few short blocks from the Plaza. Drury, known as a mid-priced chain, has opened a few upscale lodgings under the 'Plaza' designation. The chain prides itself on customer satisfaction and value-added perks. All rates include free breakfast as well as the 5:30 Kickback which offers a rotating menu of hot foods, cold drinks and wine and beer for mom and dad. You can make a meal of it. There's also free popcorn and in the lobby from 3pm to 10pm daily. There's a rooftop pool offering panoramic views of Santa Fe and a fitness center for working out. The five acres of open space are great for kids to run around and let off steam.

2. Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort and Spa
Photo courtesy of Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort and Spa

While a bit far from Santa Fe, the Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort and Spa is a wonderful option for family vacations. It provides easy access to both Santa Fe and Albuquerque. Parents can enjoy golf or the spa while kids are at Camp Tamaya where kids from 3 to12 are kept happy and busy. Kids will love the pools, especially the Plaza Pool with its three-story water slide. There are tennis courts, stables with pony rides and barnyard animals. Take out bikes (helmets are available) or play ping pong, volleyball, basketball, tether ball or horseshoes. Board games are stocked and the living room is perfect for quiet family games. Traveling with a baby? They have a program that will deliver needed supplies to your room (at a cost). Both room service and the Santa Ana Café have kid menus. After dinner, enjoy s'mores by the fire.

1. Bishop's Lodge Ranch Resort Santa Fe
Photo courtesy of Steve Collins

Resort fans will love Bishop's Lodge Ranch Resort and Spa. The 450-acre oasis in the high desert offers a choice of accommodations spread over 15 buildings. If you want a kitchen, living room and separate bedrooms, opt for one of the hillside 'villas' which have housed a few A-list movie stars and corporate giants. There's something for everyone in the family here including a year 'round outdoor pool, tennis courts, horseback and bike riding, cowboy cookouts, skeet shooting, snowshoeing and even a spa for the grown-ups. Family movie night brings popcorn and during summer and holidays there's a special game room with foosball, ping pong and indoor soccer. There's poolside dining in summer and there's a kids menu both there and in the dining room. In summer and holidays they offer kid's camp to keep the young ones busy. Ask about family packages when booking.