Notes from the Valley

In case you're a wee bit curious about the life of a casita keeper.

2015 Recap – Our 1st Season!

30 Jan No Comments Cliff River Springs year in review

No surprise here, but it’s really true that the idea of keeping a blog updated with fresh posts is a fantasy that marks a new business person. All of last year came and went without any documentation happening here. For now – as we dive into 2016 and our second season – it’s clear a summation in pictures is about the best we can do to capture the year just ended.

It was a heck of a great first season, that we can say. Cliff River Springs was discovered by travelers from all over the country, became a new destination for NM residents intrepid enough to venture beyond Ojo, and produced a stack of excellent TripAdvisor reviews we’re just a bit proud of. We had our first groups book all seven casitas at once  – for a reunion of doctors from Shiprock, N.M., and for gatherings of passionate geologists, archaeology field trippers, and solstice celebrants. People came for anniversaries and birthdays, to escape the heat of the city, and to seek an away from the world in order to rest, to nurse a creative endeavor forward, and to indulge their urge to explore. Without fail, everyone got out on the land and was moved by it.

So, success in 2015…in so many ways. Take a look:

Thanksgiving Weekend 2014

28 Nov No Comments Cliff River Springs holidays

This weekend has been a lovely quiet celebration of fall in the country. Yesterday, on the day of thanks itself, we feasted at Apache Drums in La Madera with our generous neighbors, the Ortegas, who prepared a wonderful spread for the community to enjoy. People drove in from the nearby villages of Servilleta Plaza, Vallecitos and Abiquiu to enjoy the food and fellowship. And yes, fall has returned. Today, the day after Thanksgiving, it was sunny, windless and warm, with temps in the low sixties. Any trace of snow is long gone and we peeled off our sweaters during our walk along the Rio Ojo Caliente.

We’re grateful for the gifts this long weekend brings of rest, reading and time with friends. Whatever frenzy the rest of country might be participating in today is completely absent in the stillness of this valley. You’d never know it was Black Friday here.


Prepping for Winter

24 Oct No Comments Cliff River Springs come in winter
This October weather could not BE more spectacular. While we hope the warm fall temps continue a lot longer, we’re looking ahead now to the coming chill. To economize, we’re closing Stream and Plaza Houses – the casitas we heat with propane-fueled gas fireplaces – until our summer season begins again in May. Yesterday, Sue and I followed our plumber around, madly scribbling notes, as he taught us how to use a compressor to blow the water out of those three casitas. Four pages of single-spaced notes
later, we pretty much understand how to winterize them. The good news is that we’re keeping all the casitas with electric heat open — at a terrific discount over summer rates, I might add — including all three connecting units in Cliff House (2 night minimum stays), and Wood House (for weekly rentals). It’s so very lovely here in the quiet months. Check out Plan Your Trip > Each Season to get a sense of winter’s crystalline beauty. And as fall starts to ebb away, start planning a cocoon in the country!


oct trees with cerro azul


And the winner is…

23 Oct 1 Comment Cliff River Springs growing a business
The Fall Fiesta Gala was a great gathering with great food. We especially enjoyed the Farmer All Star Award ceremony honoring the hard work of  farmers Phil Loomis of Jacona Farm, Pilar Abadia of Anna Maria Farm, and Noel and Gloria Trujillo of Vigil’s Chimayo Produce. And we were very pleased that our live auction
donation of 3 nights in all 7 casitas raised $2,600 for the Santa Fe Farmers Market. The high bid was made by Dale Heinemann and Brian Tercero representing the Very Best Santa Fe real estate team, and George Pelletier of Rio de Vallecitos. We’re looking forward to hosting them and their guests at Cliff River Springs!


What a Debut! Santa Fe, Meet Cliff River Springs

11 Oct No Comments Cliff River Springs growing a business

This evening we’re shedding our jeans, doing something with our hair, and heading into Santa Fe to attend the Santa Fe Farmers Market Fall Fiesta Gala. We’re donating 3 nights of ALL of Cliff River Springs to be live-auctioned as a fund raiser for the Market. Since we can accommodate up to 16 people (18 if a queen fold-out couch is pressed into service) this a great opportunity for a family looking for a place to hold its reunion, or for a business to schedule a retreat. Hope the bidding starts high and stays high. Excited, too, to be going with our marketing strategy partner Bad Dog Design – who designed our site and logo. I hear there are still tickets available at the door!


live auction


10 Oct No Comments Cliff River Springs growing a business

It has been a grey day today, but the excitement in the air here in the Little House (which doubles as the Cliff River Springs office) has more than made up for the lack of sunshine. That’s because after weeks and weeks of honing, today’s the day this site starts carrying the news of Cliff River Spring far and wide – we hope!

(Got us a Facebook page, too — — and you can follow us on Instagram — Phew!)

Sue and I did manage brief forays into the world beyond our computer screens today and we’re looking forward to a lot more of that in the weeks ahead. October is the most glorious month in New Mexico. This getting-the-site-up effort has kept us indoors long enough. There’s a walk along the river marked by cairns that’s calling to be made.

Branding + Marketing Strategy. Web Design + Development: