Emphasis on Living…
March 18th, 2020 was a sobering day. That was the day I closed Cliff River Springs for the entire rest of the year due to Covid-19. During the nine quiet months which followed members of my family from Los Angeles, Oakland, and Philadelphia sheltered in the casitas at various times for weeks or months. During this chapter I learned a lot about how to safely share the land. I saw that, as long as we followed a few rules, Cliff River Springs is actually ideally suited for making the best of a pandemic.
A lot more is known about Covid-19 now than was understood when I closed. More information, combined with my family’s experience of living apart together during difficult times, has given me confidence to reopen now. To ensure we all have the best possible experience here, I’ve made some changes to the way I operate. Beginning February 20th, here’s how Cliff River Springs will work in 2021.
Longer Stays. Gone for now are the 2-night minimum stay requirement and a free fourth night for stays of three days or longer. To cut down on turnover for the safety of all, I’m now asking guests to book for a minimum of seven nights with rates discounted up to 40% on longer stays. While I realize this will impact who is able to come, I’m certain that extended time in the open air, on the trails, and in the pond is what prioritizing our mental, spiritual and physical health requires.
My other hope is that staycationers and work-from-away guests will find being here a practical and refreshing change of scene. To that end, I’ve increased the speed of our fiber optic Internet to 100 Mbps and have made the business’s laundry facilities available to guests. I’ve also relaxed our pet policy in recognition of the fact that it can be difficult to leave your dog behind for a week or longer. Please acquaint yourself with our revised pet policy here. As I recently wrote elsewhere on the site, after the year we’ve had more time on the land with those you love can only be good.
More Flexible Cancellation Policy. We are small and cancellations adversely affect us. That said, our lives have rarely been more uncertain than they are now (a reason why travel insurance might be something to consider). In 2021 I’m waiving cancellation fees for individuals altogether and permitting cancellation with full refund closer to arrival. Cancel seven or more days from the day you’re due to arrive for a full refund of your 50% deposit with no cancellation fee. A cancellation less than 7 days prior to arrival forfeits 1/2 its deposit. If you cancel less than 2 days (48 hrs) prior to 3 pm check-in on the date of your arrival, you’ll be responsible for the full amount of your stay. There are no refunds for early departure.
The magic number for groups booking all of Cliff River Springs is 30 days. If your group cancels 30 or more days from your arrival date, I’ll issue a full deposit of your 35% refund minus a $75 cancellation fee. Cancellations between 29 and 15 days out forfeit the group’s deposit. Groups cancelling 14 or fewer days from their scheduled day of arrival are responsible for the full cost of their reservation. To recap:
Individuals: If you cancel less than 2 days (48 hours) prior to check in, you’re responsible for the full amount of your stay.
Groups: If you cancel less than 15 days prior to check in, you’re responsible for the full amount of your stay. (Again, consider travel insurance.)
Your Casita is Your Casita. After your casita is aired, cleaned and sanitized (by a housekeeper wearing mask and gloves) no one enters it again until you do, when you arrive. Once you have settled in, no one will enter during your entire stay unless you request a cleaning (for a fee) during a day when you will be gone.
Guests staying two weeks or longer will be provided clean sheets and towels every seven days. I will set the clean linens by your front door along with a bag into which you can place linens needing to be laundered. This way of doing things is designed to give you maximum privacy and security. I don’t, however, want you to go without. Communication is the key. Let me know what you need and I’ll take care of it without delay.
Breakfast No, Laundry Yes. If you haven’t stayed here before you won’t miss the breakfast foods I used to put into refrigerators for my guests’ first morning. To those who looked forward to the steel cut oats and golden raisins etc., my apologies! It’s safer for you if everything you consume while you are here is purchased by and brought by you. I will, however, continue to supply bottles of oil and vinegar (unopened), spices including salt and pepper (cleaned with sanitizing wipes), small amounts of sugar, and a packet of strong coffee.
On the plus side, to facilitate longer stays the laundry room off the breezeway is now open for your use. I will be wiping down and sanitizing the laundry room on a regular basis. Please bring your own laundry supplies (detergent, dryer sheets, etc.) and feel free to use the clothes lines near the parking area if you like your clothes dried in the sun.
I mentioned a few rules. Thank you for doing your part to keep Cliff River Springs safe.
- Wear a properly fitted mask in public areas & when within 6 feet of other guests and our staff.
- Practice physical distancing during check in, while enjoying the property, and when interacting with other guests/staff.
- Wash your hands regularly & freely use provided hand sanitizers.
- Be aware that only registered guests are allowed on the property at any time. Day/night visitors are not permitted.
- Only share your casita with members of your household.
- Do not travel if you’re not feeling well.
- If you become ill while you are here, notify us immediately and make arrangements to return home.
Check these sites often to stay informed about pandemic-related NM state regulations affecting travel:
- New Mexico Department of Health’s Covid Safe Practices https://cv.nmhealth.org/covid-safe-practices
- NM Dept of Tourism Travel Advisories
- NM Dept of Health’s Public Health Orders & Executive Orders
- Office of New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham https://www.governor.state.nm.us
- Governor Grisham’s press releases
- The State of New Mexico Latest Updates
Ready to celebrate how far we’ve come? Reserve your casita today.