For those who think of Taos or Santa Fe when they’re contemplating an eco-conscious and laid back vacation in northern New Mexico, where dreams of locally grown, gourmet organic food is par for the course, think again! Located in the North Valley area of the city of Albuquerque, Los Poblanos Historic Inn & Organic Farm is a treasure to be discovered by those looking for a philosophy as well as just a lovely place to stay, whether for a weekend or a week or longer. According to Matt Rembe, Executive Director and one of the present family owners, it’s a place to re-connect.
In the 1930’s, when the influential Simms family purchased the property, they had a vision of it being a center for cultural activities and in addition to using it as their family home, created another building for special events. Employing the talents of acclaimed architect of the region, John Gaw Meem, the beautiful and graceful building reflects his sensibility now known as the Santa Fe Style.
Later, during the 1990’s, the Rembe family decided to buy the property that had already been used for many decades as a working farm. At first their own private home also, their vision became that of providing an experience for guests that would put them in direct contact with the agricultural aspect of what they term “progressive farming,” with a beautiful place to stay that would offer them the opportunity to participate in some of the finest in organic cuisine, as well.
Now, the building originally created for special events, still serves the community, catering to weddings and other kinds of gatherings. As well as an ample and beautifully appointed dining room, there is also an art gallery as well as an extensive library. The food served is one of the most important features.
Executive Chef Jonathan Perno and Sous Chef Jaye Wilkinson run the kitchen that serves the whole gamut of fresh produce from the area, as well as local meat and poultry, all of which is lovingly and creatively prepared. They really are thrilled to be involved in this very special enterprise of working with local farmers and consider it a privilege to be involved as they are in presenting the gourmet organic cuisine that always reflects the seasonal availability, rather than a fixed menu that’s repeated. But it’s working with the community that provides the enthusiasm they bring to their participation in the buying, preparation and presentation of the food. At the core of their work is the pride in the philosophy that “continues to support local farmers.”
Breakfast is included in the room rate, but dinner is optional. However, it seems that the guests who are familiar with Los Poblanos would never consider dining anywhere else, with good reason. To stay at one of the beautifully furnished casitas and be able to relax without having to leave the premises, is part of the allure. This is especially nice when finding the Innwith its superlative food, much of which is grown in their own organic garden and supplied by their own farm, is just a short drive from the Albuquerqueairport, but far away from the atmosphere of a city. It’s definitely country living.
In addition to the fine food and casually elegant private casitas (I especially loved the luxurious bed and the cozy kiva style corner fireplace), there is a swimming pool as well as an exercise room. For those who want that shopping hit, the gift shop provides an array of lavender products from the lavender fields on the property, as well as an assortment of locally prepared products such as chile glazed pecans and local honey. Children can enjoy visiting with the various farm animals, including goats and rabbits.
Many of the guests who come to Los Poblanos are return visitors. Once they discovered this charming inn, they feel that they’ve found all they’ve ever looked for. The couple I spoke with, in their mid-fifties, love its feeling of homeyness and have been staying several times a year over the past five or six years. They know and love the staff and feel well taken care of. That’s the best testimony to providing that special kind of hospitality that makes for a lasting connection.
Los Poblanos Historic Inn& Organic Farm
4803 Rio Grande Blvd. NW
Los Ranchos de Albuquerque, New Mexico 87107
New Mexico Tourism info
Albuquerque Tourism info