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New Mexico is pure magic. It’s one of my favorite places on earth.
Every time I’m there, I feel deep soul-healing. Those high desert landscapes are what my soul looks like, I think. I’m so completely at peace with the mountains and wind and all of it.
So I was definitely looking forward to staying at the Hyatt Regency Tamaya, nestled 25 minutes north of Albuquerque and 45 minutes south of Santa Fe in northern New Mexico.
Two friends and I drove here non-stop from Dallas – a solid 10-hour drive. We left at 4am, stopping only in Amarillo for an early lunch. A few hours later, we drove through the cute town of Bernalillo and into the 550 acres of the resort, technically located in Santa Ana Pueblo.
This is a wonderful, special resort. I highly recommend staying here if you ever get the opportunity. Here’s my experience and how I stayed for completely free!
In This Post
Hyatt Regency Tamaya Review – Arrival and check-in
The hotel was under renovation when I was there, to improve the lobby. But honestly, it was already so gorgeous I don’t know how they planned to make it better.
Signs directed us to the check-in desk. The desk agents were so welcoming and friendly. They offered us margaritas while they checked us in.
One of the nights was for an ADA room with wheelchair access and bars in the bathroom, which I didn’t mind. But I explained we’d be happy in that room, or another if they wanted to keep it open.
The desk agent happily moved us into a bigger room with a fantastic full view of the Sandia mountains! My heart fluttered as I thought about those graceful, somber mountains waiting right outside.
We headed to room 2109.
Not a huge room, but enough space for us. It was well-decorated and had lots of New Mexican touches, from the carpet to the wall art to the little abode divider in the bathroom. I loved the wood floors and earth tone colors.
The beds were super comfy! Mine had a chair next to it, and was closest to the balcony. It did get chilly at night, but the heat in the room was plenty sufficient. And it got warm during the day, so we cracked the balcony door to let in some fresh desert air.
Check out that view! I spent several long moments taking in the sunshine. 🙂
Again, not a huge room, but more than enough for us.
The wifi was fast, although I didn’t use it much. Everything was very clean and quiet. That’s all I ever look for in a room, really: clean, quiet, and fast wifi. On all counts, the hotel delivered with our room.
This resort spans a massive 550 acres and has:
- Walking trails
- Stable for rescued horses
- Gift shop
- Fitness center
I couldn’t wait to explore the paths along the Rio Grande! There are several walking trails that form a big loop around the perimeter.
The trails weave through forests and along the river. There’s also a “fitness trail” with spots to do situps, pullups, stretches, etc.
Though it was mid-January, I loved seeing the stark trees, grass, and leaves on the ground. It was sunny with nary a cloud in the sky, and so perfect and fresh out there.
We even encountered some tumbleweeds, a perfect Southwestern symbol.
The trails are arranged in a way that you can easily get back to the hotel. Or you can keep wandering into other parts of the forest. We took a few of the trails and looped back to the hotel after a couple of hours.
We only saw one other person the entire time, so we had all the trails pretty much to ourselves. Talk about a retreat! You also get mountain views when the trail gets near the river. Just sublime.
The grounds were well-maintained and felt very safe. I could’ve easily spent more time just following each trail.
Here are few more snaps from around the hotel.
From top to bottom, the hotel is exceptionally decorated with native art and has tons of Southwestern (and New Mexican) accents, like clay pots, weavings, and patterned art.
We ate in the hotel restaurant for breakfast both days. It was a touch pricey, but wow: the food was delicious. Here’s the breakfast menu. We also had dinner at the Corn Maiden restaurant, but my tummy was queasy so all I could hold was a soup. Even that was great, though.
Overall, I loved the property. Being so close to nature was exactly what I wanted. Plus, we took a day trip to Santa Fe and got there in 45 minutes, from the hotel parking lot to the square in the center of town.
It’s also only 25 minutes to Albuquerque if you’d rather see the museums, breweries, and sights there instead.
How I stayed for free
Link: Chase Hyatt card
With the Chase Hyatt card, you get a free night each year at a Category 1 through 4 hotel on your anniversary when you pay the card’s $75 annual fee.
I’ve always gotten outsized value from this perk. And have used it to stay in New Orleans, Austin, and now in New Mexico. One year when I couldn’t use it, I treated family to a stay at the Hyatt Regency St. Louis at The Arch. And I wrote about 4 hotels where the value really shines.
One of my nights at the Tamaya would’ve cost ~$226 after taxes.
In this case, I got 3 times the value from the annual fee!
I also found a room during the 2018 Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, when rooms are going for nearly $350 a night.
This would be an incredible use of the free night! It’s valid here because the Tamaya is a Category 4 hotel, which usually requires 15,000 Hyatt points per night.
I sent Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Hyatt to book the other night. I already had some points in there from other stays, so I just topped it up and redeemed the free night.
My total out-of-pocket cost for 2 nights was $0. Free. And so worth it.
Here’s my referral for the Chase Hyatt card if you want to apply and pick up some points! This card is NOT subject to the 5/24 rule. And because of the free night certificate, it’s a forever keeper. I’ve always gotten outsized value from this benefit alone. Not to mention the bonus offers that pop up sometimes.
As long as the free night remains, it’s a no-brainer to keep.
Man, this stay was so satisfying. I loved the rural location, the huge grounds, the decor, the staff, the food. Really everything about it, beginning to end.
I was sad to leave New Mexico. But I’m grateful the Hyatt Regency Tamaya is a part of my memories now. I’m also happy about not paying one red cent for the 2 nights I enjoyed there.
The Chase Hyatt card continually proves to be a keeper. As long as I can get an occasional room upgrade and a free night every year, I’ll keep it.
I would definitely, 100% stay at this hotel again. I bet it’s stunning in the fall. Perhaps next time I can stay longer and use it as a base for Albuquerque instead of Santa Fe. Now that it’s on my radar, I won’t soon forget it. Stay here if you get the chance. It’s entirely beautiful, and so worth it.
If you’ve stayed here, how does your experience compare? Would you consider staying in the mountains of New Mexico for a few days?* If you liked this post, consider signing up to receive free blog posts in an RSS reader and you’ll never miss an update! And thanks for using my links to apply for new card offers!
Editorial Note: Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post. The opinions of the commenters are not necessarily the opinions of this site.
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