The Santa Fe Railyard is just a short 10-15 minute walk from the Inn of the Governors. The 2008 grand opening celebration brought life to the redeveloped 50 acre site that has since welcomed visitors and locals alike. This blog will speak to the 13 acres and the surrounding areas that have become home to many contemporary art galleries, open space venues and restaurants.
Step out of the Inn and make your way West towards Guadalupe Street (just 3 blocks away) and our conduit to the Railyard area. Guadalupe Street has some wonderful restaurants and interesting shops which might waylay your 10-15 minute walk. No harm there, because you just might want to stop in and see what consigned item at Double Take will be your “take away” souvenir. Is it that pair of cowboy boots or turquoise jewelry that you wanted to remind you of your trip to Santa Fe or maybe a velvet dress instead? Either way, here’s a spot you just might want to spend a little of your time.
Once you have pulled yourself away from the small shops you will find contemporary galleries on the Southern end of Guadalupe Street. The Railyard Arts district begins here and is anchored by SITE Santa Fe. Site Santa Fe launched the only international biennial of contemporary art in the United States in 1995. The most recent exhibition is “Unsettled Landscapes.” This exhibit will be available for viewing until January 11, 2015. If you are here on a Friday, your admission is Free. If you are visiting the last Friday of the month, you must take advantage of the “Last Friday Art Walk” that is hosted by these galleries. Ten galleries participate by keeping their doors open after 5pm and hold receptions with artists, sometimes musicians, but always breathtaking and interesting pieces of jewelry, basketry, sculpture and other forms of art.
The Railyard Plaza is an open space where I have attended a few free concerts and some special local events. I recommend bringing a portable chair or blanket so that you can relax for a while; or maybe you would prefer to join in the dancing to the music. Either are a fun way to spend an afternoon or evening. The plaza is adjacent to El Museo Cultural Center which house 31,000 square feet of galleries, theater and exhibition spaces. Here’s a link to their ongoing activities.
Adjoining the plaza is my favorite place (and a favorite of many of the Inn’s guests, too) to be on a Tuesday or Saturday morning. The Santa Fe Farmer’s Market has been voted one of the “Top 10 Farmer’s Market” by Sunset magazine and if you stop by, you will certainly understand why. There are over 150 active vendors that come to the market. During the summer, you can pick that fresh bouquet of flowers, sip on apple cider, and try a specialty goat cheese with that fresh baked bread while listening to a local musician or find a specialty item to take home. Roasted chile is a specialty of the New Mexico house and hopefully you will be visiting in late summer when the opportunity arises to taste some of Romero farms freshly roasted green chile. I love this video of him roasting chile! Don’t forget to visit the Shops at the Market as you have an opportunity for locally made gifts, tea, chocolate and a wine tasting all under one roof. Let Vivac winery know I sent you. What a way to spend your morning!
If you are here on a Sunday, you can visit the many local artists in the Railyard Artisan Market. Enjoy local art and music inside the Farmer’s Market pavilion from 10am-4pm.
When all is said and done, you can take a stroll through the gardens and see the beauty of xeriscaping at its best. Spend some time, take a swing on the large “swing set for two” or rest on a bench and eat your treat from the market and enjoy Santa Fe as a local. Safe Travels, Deb Swanson