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Relax and rejuvenate with a visit to Ojo Santa Fe Spa Resort south of Santa Fe, New Mexico. The tranquil setting, great food, and healing waters make this a memorable escape.
In the 40 years since my first visit to Santa Fe Plaza, traffic and parking issues have grown enormously. But a 20-minute drive south to Ojo Santa Fe Spa Resort, one of Santa Fe’s memorable wellness resorts, offered a low-key route full of broad vistas.
I received a property map at check-in, which overwhelmed me a bit as I’m not great with maps. However, I could easily and quickly navigate the resort without it.
I arrived at my lodging building by about 5 pm. Much awaited me: a spacious bathroom with a tile floor and wall-length mirror; a coffee station with a small refrigerator, sink, and coffeepot; and a massive king bed. A small balcony and two chairs provided sunlit treetop views. It is also important to note that guestrooms at Ojo Santa Fe do not have TVs.
This Ojo experience differed distinctly from my previous visits to Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs Resort & Spa. While Ojo Caliente is located on relatively flat, arid land, rolling, tree-covered hills characterize Ojo Santa Fe.
Winding roads and tall staircases led from one elevation and destination to another. Small waterfalls cascaded down rock-strewn hills. And although this Ojo resort offers multiple mineral-rich, spring-fed, geothermal soaking options, these pools do not feature individual distinct minerals such as the iron or soda pools at Ojo Caliente.
Ojo Santa Fe opened in 2020 at the previous site of Sunrise Springs Spa. Built in 1991, the property underwent an extensive renovation before rebranding and re-opening.
Wonderful Water at this Santa Fe Wellness Resort
In keeping with Ojo’s focus on healing waters and general relaxation, the Santa Fe property offers three warm soaking pools easily viewed from the spa. The steamy, 70-foot-long, rectangular Sages Soak Sanctuary pool transforms into a natural spring-fed pond. And the round hot tub provided added relaxation after laps in the heated, seasonal junior Olympic-size saltwater pool. Hammocks and small cabanas were available to inspire and enhance relaxation.
Reserved in advance, my night soak session in a steamy, bubbling outdoor private Ojitos pool was downright magical. On that cool fall night, when an aromatic piñon-wood fire glowed in the small horno fireplace, stars blanketed the sky between overhead canvases. My wood-rich Ojitos pool enclosure also offered an outdoor shower and a glass container full of fresh drinking water. Warm bubbling water enveloped me as the air temperature dropped.
Although I found the 50-minute session too long, I still recommend this private soaking opportunity and a visit to the adjacent steam shower afterward. If you prefer daylight soaks, Ojitos pools are available starting at 7:30 a.m.
I also booked a morning massage during my stay. Rachel led me up two flights of stairs from the serene but slightly chilly waiting area. Sunlight poured into the tiny treatment room. Rachel kneaded my muscles with a silky lotion. I was very tense from the 11-hour drive two days earlier, and her expertise gave me great relief. Time passed quickly before I wrapped myself in my robe again, returned to the pristine women’s locker room, and took a long luxurious shower.
Book combo treatments to extend your relaxation and pampering. Options include the Cactus Flower Massage and Scrub, Lavender Body Quench Massage and Wrap, or the Blue Corn, Prickly Pear, and Sea Salt Scrub with Hot Oil Hair Therapy.
Unexpected Delight at this Wonder Santa Fe Wellness Resort
I next headed towards the puppies. Yes – you read that right – puppies. Ojo Santa Fe has an ongoing relationship with nearby Española Humane. Adoptable puppies from the organization stay at Ojo Santa Fe in a bright, airy indoor/outdoor puppy paradise with plenty of artificial turf and an indoor shelter. Overnight or day guests can play with the pooches, reduce their stress levels, and hopefully take home a new friend.
‘Puppy Patch’ hours are available in the morning and select evenings (check for specific times). During my visit, two puppies came from one litter, and four more came from a second. The attendant asked that we wear masks to minimize the spread of germs as we socialized between families. The pups were adorable, curious, and playful but had sharp teeth! If puppies aren’t your thing, visit the Silky Chickens known for their sociability and soft coats.
Guests with a refined palate will appreciate the upscale cuisine and ambiance at Blue Heron Restaurant and the sommelier-curated wine list. Some guests treat an evening meal in this bright, airy space as an opportunity to dress up, from three-inch heels and open-back dresses to bright white cowboy hats and embroidered shirts.
I settled beside a tall window overlooking well-lit, mist-covered pools and ordered a Michael David red wine to accompany my Ojo Fish Tacos. The gluten-free dish incorporated large chunks of blackened wild-caught sablefish, crunchy-fresh jicama cabbage slaw, cilantro aioli, soft, sweet mango salsa, and chipotle honey glaze.
Additional entrees included Wagyu Flank & Frites or Duroc Pork Tomahawk Chop served with green chile cheddar grits, baby carrots, asparagus, and caramelized peach sauce. Ceviche or a charcuterie selection were several ‘starter’ choices. Blue Heron also serves breakfast, lunch, and Sunday brunch.
Fresh From the Source
Many Blue Heron ingredients come from the 1.5-acre Ojo Farm near Ojo Caliente. A wall-mounted chalkboard lists farm ingredients used in current dishes. During my visit, the kitchen incorporated Ojo’s salad mix, including gem lettuce, zucchini, snake cucumber, rattlesnake bean, basil, heirloom tomato, cherry tomato, mixed hot peppers, poblano pepper, mixed beets, and purple scallions.
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Reasons to Plan a Trip to this Fabulous Santa Fe Wellness Resort
Ojo Santa Fe offers terrific food, wine, soaks, massages, and even hiking. I would have loved to relax here for several more days, but my remaining travel schedule beckoned. When planning a trip to Santa Fe, New Mexico, or anywhere else in the Southwest, let Wander with Wonder be your guide.
NOTE: Ojo Santa Fe Spa Resort (and Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs Resort and Spa) are 13 and older resorts. Younger guests may share lodging and dining services but may not enter soaking, pool, or spa areas. Adults must also accompany minors under 18 at all times.