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Weekend in Santa Fe

Weekend in Santa Fe
via Hawker 800XP Private Charter
May 2013

On of the many benefits of moving from California and San Francisco is a much lower cost of living. Ergo, more disposable income for toys... for boys and girls... and a jet card. Mrs. SFO and I are celebrating our anniversary this weekend and are off for a day and a half in Santa Fe, New Mexico. This is our first trip with JetLinx, our new Denver charter company, operating from convenient Centennial Airport (APA) in the suburbs south of Denver.

Only 15 minutes after leaving our house, we arrived at the Signature/JetLinx gate and, just like Lufthansa at FRA or MUC are cleared onto the ramp and drive right up to our plane, a stunning Hawker 800XP. Yes Virginia, upgrades also apply to flying private. For the short trip, I had booked a cheaper light jet but the JetLinx Denver staff upgraded us to a mid size jet. The old "let's upgrade him so he won't want to go back to a light jet" trick. It may just work.

As we drove up, we are met by our crew for the weekend, Capt. Micah and FO Rick, as well as flight services director Kelly.  After some pleasant chit-chat and the obligatory pics, we board our luxurious 800XP and settle in for the quick 40 minute flight to SAF.

Mimosas compliments of the great JetLinx APA staff.

Our CL-600 ramp neighbor this morning as we get ready to taxi.

After the pre-flight check, we head off to runway 17L.

Cleared for take-off.

Exploring the galley.

Just like the big boys, Airshow monitors our progress and flight path.

Starting our descent...

Not exactly a major airport, but hey, we have Eagle to DFW.

Lots of nice company this morning.

And as soon as the doors opened, an Avis rep delivered our SUV planeside and we were off to explore Santa Fe.
 

Much of Santa Fe features adobe type buildings. Our first stop was the Rosewood Inn of the Anasazi conveniently close to the main square of old town Santa Fe. Comfortable but somewhat rustic hotel.

Our room was a comfortable third floor Deluxe King with fireplace, with a nice welcoming touch, and bottle of champagne from our TA.

The view of downtown from our room.

The Inn has numerous attractive interior areas.

All in all a pleasant hotel, good location, but not memorable.

 

Lots of galleries and sculptures all over town.

Historic Santa Fe Plaza is just around the corner.

While I had researched restaurants and made dinner reservations, I figured we'd just wing it for lunch. Mrs. SFO had recommendations for lunch and after discussing the options with the front desk staff, decided go to Tomasita's, near the train station.

Always a good sign when a restaurant is packed.
The bad news is that it was one of the worst Mexican restaurants we'd been to in a long time.

Margaritas were good, severe alcohol laws notwithstanding.

As we resisted that temptation to try a New Mexico wine.

Tortilla soup, not so good.

Tacos. Meh.

My combo plate tasted even worse than it looked. Best that it wasn't in focus.
So sweetie, where did you hear about this place? "...the guy behind the meat counter at Whole Foods. He's from Santa Fe..." LOL.

The only good part of the meal were the sopaipillas, fried pastry pockets with a delicious honey butter.
OK, that was pretty good.

After lunch, we head back another way thru old Santa Fe, with some interesting stores and galleries along the way.

Mrs. SFO, already way too interested in Colorado's new marijuana laws, spotted this shop on that way. We stopped in and she inquired "can you smoke hemp?" LOL.

Sculpture of all kinds all over Santa Fe.

Cathedral of St. Francis, dating from 1886, is a blend of adobe, French-Romanesque and modern architecture.
Also where FTer JMN57 and Mrs. JMN57 were married.

And the obligatory Navajo rug shops.

After a drink on the outside terrace at the hotel, we took a taxi to Canyon Road, home to the largest collection of galleries in Santa Fe. A little browsing before dinner.

And then an amazing dinner at Geromino. Lunch was but a distant memory as our dinner was sensational. Pics from their website.

Tough to take pics in the ambiant light so these are some representative food pics from the Geronimo website.
I had the fabulous lobster salad, although the dilled tempura version.

Mrs. SFO had the Fiery sweet chile and honey grilled Mexican prawns with jasmine rice cakes, frisee red onion salad with yuzu basil aioli.

And to finish, divine Carmelized Banana Cream pie.

After an excellent breakfast in the Anasazi restaurant...

We headed out for drive around some of the residential areas north of the city, featuring nothing but abode style homes...

And then to Canyon Road for the 2nd day of Passport to the Arts...


Next up was a late lunch at wonderful La Casa Sena. Great southwest cuisine, terrific staff and delicious margaritas.

Yummy blue corn muffins.

My Aztec Dusted Salmon was amazing... pan seared filet with spiced mocha crust, yellow mole, warm quinoa-radicchio salad, and mango-sesame dressing. Sorry for the crap pic.

Mrs. SFO went light with the Sena Plaza Chicken Salad, basil/mint pesto-marinated chicken tossed in guava-chipotle vinaigrette with summer veggies, radicchio, and butter lettuce, fried tortilla strips.

But then dug into my russet fries, served with morita ketchup and green chile crema.

One more view of the Cathedral as we headed back to the hotel to check out.


 

And the 20 minute drive to the airport.

Our plane waiting for us just beyond the security fence. I drove up to the gate, pushed the call button and with a simple "Hi, this is SFO777 for N553BW", the gate opened and we drove up to our plane.

Our flight crew stowed our bags on board, and we gave our rental keys to ground staff who subsequently returned our car to Avis.

A final pre-check and we were on our way to runway 17 and the 45 minute ride home.

45 short minutes after wheels up at SAF, we touched down back on runway 35R at APA.

And a couple minutes later pulled up to our ramp position and our waiting car with Mrs. SFO once again proclaiming "this is the only way to fly".
I am in so much trouble.