Before the Drury Plaza Hotel in Santa Fe opened in 2014, the building used to be many things. A Territorial-style building initially designed by architect John Gaw Meem as a hospital in the mid-20th century, the former St. Vincent’s Hospital went through several transformations – including a movie set for a few movie shoots including Jeff Bridges’ Crazy Heart – before eventually becoming the Drury Plaza Hotel in 2014.
A need for more space led to closure of the hospital, which the Drury brand seized upon immediately. Undergoing a historic renovation with prime location, the family-owned Drury company turned the space into unique accommodations with private terraces and premium suites. Nowadays, it is one of the first choices for families and one of the best values in the city.
The 182-room Drury Plaza Hotel in Downtown Santa Fe is the first big new hotel to open in years. Today, this five-acre prime property is more than being about its strategic Santa Fe location. It’s a place where everything is supersized – from a lofty atrium-style lobby, oodles of public space, rooms you can breathe in, to complimentary amenities that almost seem too good to be true.
The Drury stands out as a place to meet and dine. A year-round rooftop bar and swimming pool, manicured courtyards, a well-equipped fitness center, and an on-property restaurant headed by celebrity chef John Rivera Sedlar adds to the draw. And for those environmentally-inclined, the hotel is LEED® Certified by the U.S. Green Building Council for energy-efficiency in the design and features of the on-property restaurant, Eloisa.
The guest experience is one that exceeds expectations and is backed up with the J.D. Power award for “Highest in Guest Satisfaction Among Upper Midscale Hotel Chains” in its 2018 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index. This marks Drury’s 13th consecutive guest-satisfaction award – a record for most consecutive wins in the J.D. Power hotel category.
For those not familiar with the Drury brand, it started in southern Missouri in 1973 with their first family-owned and operated hotel. Now, the Drury family has either built or acquired more than 150 hotels in 25 states. One thing you can always count on is consistency, quality, and value wherever you go with Drury.
The Lobby and Rooftop Terrace
One of the most attractive and spacious lobbies in the city, the two-story atrium-style lobby showcases a wood-burning fireplace built with Colorado sandstone. Guests are invited to enjoy the ambiance with plenty of comfy seating.
The next level – also overlooking the grand lobby – is where all the action is when it comes to complimentary breakfast, snacking, drinks, and even evening adult beverages. Wander to the top floor for a library nook complete with a fireplace. Expect to discover paintings, sculptures, and photos from local artists bedecking all floors.
The rooftop terrace – comprised of Bar Alto, heated outdoor pool and whirlpool – offers panoramic views of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains along with a birds-eye view of the Cross of the Martyrs and St. Francis Cathedral.
Drury Plaza Hotel accommodations are inspired by the earthy tones of early Spanish missions and feature spacious rooms with high ceilings and tall windows – some of the largest in the city. Oversized bathrooms include quartz counters, tile walls and floors, and separate walk-in showers and soaking tubs in the suites.
Deluxe rooms and suites come with separate seating areas and wood-tiled floors. My suite contained a second large-screen television and desk in the seating area. Dark-leather headboards and leather armchairs complete the picture, giving more of a casual comfort than luxury feel.
Room amenities include free Wi-Fi, TV, coffee nooks with refrigerators, microwaves, and coffeemakers, iron and ironing board, hairdryer, and in-room safe.
The Amenities and Art
Be prepared for a pleasant surprise as the edible amenities at the Drury Plaza are anything but ordinary – they are super-sized. From the complimentary extensive hot breakfast to the “Kickback” social hour with ample hot appetizers, free beer, wine and mixed drinks, there’s plenty to choose from. My favorite? The free soda and popcorn available in the lobby from 3-9 pm daily.
If you need to work off the calories, a 24-hour fitness center is available on the premises. Or, if work beckons, a 24-hour business center has got you covered.
Though I didn’t personally test this perk, the hotel offers free domestic long distance (60 minutes per room, per night) and unlimited local calls. Fifteen minutes free long distance is available to Canada and Mexico.
Drury Hotels has partnered exclusively with Palace Avenue Arts to promote painters, sculptors, and photographers throughout the premises. This makes Drury Plaza Hotel as Santa Fe’s largest art gallery. Just stroll each floor for different art and media.
The hotel is adjacent to St. Francis Cathedral Basilica and only two blocks from the Plaza in Downtown Santa Fe. Likewise, Loretto Chapel is a two-blocks walk as is Canyon Road with its concentrated art galleries and restaurants.
Museums are within walking distance, too. Georgia O’Keeffe Museum is .5 miles away as is the New Mexico History Museum. The Santa Fe Children’s Museum is a brisk mile walk. The exciting interactive Meow Wolf is a short drive from the property.
You can make your reservations directly with the the Drury hotel website or you can compare rates and book through Trip Advisor. Some rooms are available for mobility and hearing accessible features at time of booking.
Various booking sites currently show $130 per night as average. However, rates can range from $119-$399 depending on time of year and room type selected. According to General Manager Keith Kirk, “We are always the best value in the downtown market.” On-site valet-only parking is available for $20 plus tax per night.
Check out special packages and discount rates listed on their website such as:
Special Package Offers:
Artist in Residence; Golf, Stay & Play; Junior Artist; Kids Quest Santa Fe; Meow Wolf
Discount rates (ID Required):
AAA, Extended Stay, Federal Government, Senior (65&over), State Government,
Law Enforcement, Military, Veterans – 10% discount
Hotel review by Albuquerque-based travel & food writer/photographer Karin Leperi, who was hosted for review purposes. All photos and text by Karin Leperi.