Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort - Review

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  1. SS255
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    SS255 Silver Member

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    Warning: This is a long post, but I wanted to be as comprehensive as possible for those who are considering a stay here.

    I won a two-night stay at the Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort during the Hyatt London Do in October, 2014. I chose to use the award during the weekend where I would be dropping from Diamond down to Platinum status, checking in on February 27, and checking out on March 1. Joining me on this “drop down” weekend was DogloverJB, who also attended the 2014 Hyatt London Do (and was also dropping down to Platinum).

    The resort is situated in a rural area about halfway between Santa Fe and Albuquerque. The hotel will arrange for transportation from either airport for a fee, but since I was able to get a reasonably-priced rental car, I did not use the hotel’s transportation option.

    New Mexico was experiencing an unusual cold snap, and I was shocked out of my senses upon landing in SAF. The drive to the hotel was very easy, and there was a big sign at the turnoff to the hotel’s main road. As we parked, the snow started to fall……and it continued to fall and accumulate until 11AM the following morning.

    My Diamond status was recognized at check in. I was offered a food and beverage amenity or 1,000 points. I figured the chances of the points posting for an award stay when I was checking out as a Platinum were probably close to zero, so I chose the food and beverage amenity: A bottle of Chardonnay and tortilla chips with salsa, goat cheese and grapes. The Regency Club is seasonal (and it was off-season), so the check-in agent told me that I would get 2,500 points instead. We were given a Mountain View room, although we were unable to see the mountain because of the snow.

    The Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort is designed in an Adobe motif, both inside and out (including the guest rooms). There is a cultural center on property, but we did not have a chance to visit it. There are four different restaurants on the property, as well a gift shop called the Trading Post with grab-and-go sandwiches and salads, and a limited hot food menu. We ate both lunch and dinner on the first day at the Rio Grande Café. The prices were very reasonable, the portion sizes were large, and the food was very tasty.

    Two of the restaurants served breakfast: The Santa Ana Café was buffet-only, and the Corn Maiden was menu service. We chose the buffet both days. The cost for the buffet is $15 for non-Diamonds. It was your typical hot and cold buffet, but there was no omelet station or waffles/pancakes. On the plus side, there was a special egg dish (in addition to standard scrambled eggs) each day, and both days the special egg dishes were the highlight of our breakfast.

    The Corn Maiden is the fine dining restaurant. It required a short walk outside the main building, which we were not inclined to do in such cold weather. Instead, we had the buffet dinner at the Santa Ana Café on the second night. The buffet was priced at $19 (including soft drinks and dessert), which I thought was a very good value for the quality and the selection. We thought the food on the property was excellent, with a wide variety of menu items and (except for the Corn Maiden) reasonable prices. The Atush Bar & Grill was closed due to “off season.”

    The hotel offers numerous activities, such as archery, balloon rides, pottery making, jewelry making, s’mores making, and nature walks. I signed up for the trail ride on horseback for 10AM on the 28th, but I was advised the night before that the trail rides were cancelled due to the weather. Some of the other activities were cancelled, as well. In fact, we were told that about half of the staff was unable to make it to work that day, because the area had experienced the worst snowstorm since 2006, and many of the roads were impassable. Some of the staff were stranded the night before, and had to sleep at the hotel.

    DogloverJB had signed up for a spa treatment at 10AM, so I ended up getting a spa treatment, as well. The spa facilities (sauna, whirlpool, steam room, relaxation room, locker rooms, and shower facilities) are free for Diamonds. The relaxation room had a very tasty (and addictive) chili granola.

    The grounds are beautiful – or at least, I believe they are – they were covered in snow, so I had to conjure my imagination. By early afternoon enough snow had melted so that we were able to walk one of the trails down to the Rio Grande – and see the incredible Mountain View upon returning to our room. We spent the balance of the afternoon sitting in the “great room” off the main lobby, in front of the fireplace. We brought the bottle of Chardonnay and the food plate amenity with us, and we grazed for a couple of hours.

    Overall, it was a great stay, despite the unexpected snowfall. Everyone whom we encountered – from my contact who made the booking (and suffered through innumerable changes and e-mails from me) to the wait staff – was incredibly friendly and accommodating. The concierge staff was really on top of the last minute changes due to inclement weather and staffing issues, calling me on my cell phone at one point to notify me of a change in activities. With few exceptions, the staffing issues were invisible to us, and we never would have known had we not engaged the employees in conversation.

    When I evaluate hotels, I assess 3 basics: Availability of power outlets, wifi, and room lighting. The power outlets in the room were not in the most convenient places: There were no outlets in reaching distance to the bedside tables, and it was only on Day 2 that I noticed two power outlets hidden under the overhang of the desk – well situated once you found them, but tucked away so discreetly that they were easily overlooked. I would suggest more and better placement of outlets. The bedside lighting was better than most hotels, but still not adequate for reading. On the other hand, the wifi worked great all over the property! The beds and pillows were very comfortable, but we didn’t discover the bathrobes until the second night: They were rolled up in a bag and stored on a shelf in the closet – a missed opportunity.

    While DogloverJB and I were able to make the best of a bad weather situation, I would recommend that anyone who wishes to take full advantage of the activities and amenities which this resort offers plan their visit during the late spring, summer or fall. DogloverJB had planned to stay here last September, but there was no availability, so make your plans well in advance. On the other hand, if you are looking for a great value during the off season, and you don’t mind that the Regency Club is closed (or prefer the 2,500 points), you may get incredibly lucky with the weather, and save yourself quite a bit of money in the process.

    If you stay at this property, make sure to sign up for their Pathways program in advance. It’s free, and you get 15% off the room rates, food and beverage, and spa treatments on property. As a proud Pathways member, I look forward to a return visit to the Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort……but probably not in the dead of winter!

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