The best kinds of hotels aren’t just places to stay. They are places with stories to tell. Places where the eye discovers something new at every turn. Places that delight the senses and the soul with local flavor– whether it be in a signature dish or an indulgent spa treatment. Taos’ El Monte Sagrado Resort is just such a spot. Here are ten not-to-be missed treasures to discover on a visit to the hotel.
1. Look up – Every décor element that graces the hotel was chosen not only for its beauty, but also for its meaning. The crystal in the center of the lobby ceiling, for example, is a 90-pound naturally occurring citrine from Brazil. A semiprecious gem, citrine is said to be a stone of abundance, attracting prosperity, and dissipating negative energy.
2. A rose is a rose…except when it is actually the chandelier suspended over the De La Tierra restaurant adjacent to the hotel lobby. David Sargent designed the fixture as a tribute to the famous upper Rose Window of the Reims Cathedral in France’s Champagne region. When you stand directly below the chandelier and look straight up you see the Rose Window pattern emerge.
3. Soak it all in – Even if relaxation isn’t your reason for visiting Taos, it’s a pleasant side effect of any stay at El Monte Sagrado. Don’t miss the heated indoor saltwater pool surrounded by waterfalls and lush plants and flowers. Or simply take advantage of the soaking tubs offered in all of the Taos Mountain rooms.
4. More pool time – If it’s a different type of pool you’re looking for, head to El Monte’s serene second floor library and shoot a round at a table built between 1907 and 1917 and once owned by the famous pool shark Minnesota Fats. The library also offers built-in checkerboards, books, magazines and a fireplace. It’s a favorite pre-wedding gathering spot for the groom and groomsmen.
5. Commune with nature, just as El Monte Sagrado’s architects intended guests to do. When designing the property, they thought just as much about where buildings shouldn’t go as where they should. One result of that philosophy is the beautiful Sacred Circle, a grove of towering cottonwood trees, many of which are several hundred years old.
6. Travel the world when you choose one of El Monte Sagrado’s luxurious, one-of-a-kind global suites, where the décor and amenities reflect the cultures of countries like Japan, China, Spain, Egypt, Morocco and more.
7. Get the fairy tale treatment at El Monte Sagrado’s renowned Living Spa. The signature Sacred Staurolite treatment uses sacred stones indigenous to Taos. The twin crystals on these staurolites are sometimes referred to as “fairy crosses.” The stones are placed strategically on the body to balance the chakras while you enjoy dry brushing, a detoxifying turquoise mud wrap, hydrating face mask, and reflexology.
8. Have a cocktail under a giant gilded “snake.” The hotel’s Anaconda Bar is a special setting for an inventive craft cocktail like the Honey Sage Martini or the Taos Lightning Old Fashioned. The bar is thus named because the anaconda is a symbol of renewal. The ceiling “anaconda” that wraps around the bar is made of gold plated tiles from Italy.
9. Stay in a colorful casita. There are many lodging options at the hotel, but many guests prefer the original historic casitas. These secluded suites feature authentic viga ceilings and are decorated by local artists.
10. Enjoy the cuisine of Chef Christina Martinez morning, noon and night. Start with wild buckwheat and blue corn pancakes for breakfast. At lunch and dinner, the menu offers up signature dishes like green chile pot pie.
For more information, please visit www.elmontesagrado.com.