The Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort, with postcard views in every direction, is a quick 30 minute drive from the not-too-big and not-too-small Albuquerque airport. My suite looked out on the 10,000 footers Sandia Mountains, which also forms the backdrop for the Twin Warriors Golf Course. And what a course it is! The holes seem to have been designed by nature, with minimal disturbance to the landscape as it winds around mesas and across arroyos. The back nine in particular bespeak of a natural beauty that actually made me feel giddy.
After golf, a spa treatment called The Tamaya Spirit Path massage provided an experience of sheer delirium. You haven’t really partaken of all life has to offer until you’ve had corn meal and oil rubbed into your body for 80 minutes!
Next up was a hike to the picturesque horse corral and Corn Maiden restaurant at the resort. I made sure to sit facing the open kitchen where I watched some true gastronomic wunderkinds in action. Speaking of food, I have to admit to a favorite “quest” when traveling—I like to discover out-of-the-way eateries that serve fabulous food in large quantities for prices so low they seem like menu misprints. Mission accomplished at the Range Café in Bernalillo where the breaded pork loin in the signature Hoosier sandwich was roughly twice the size of the bun, and the slab of chocolate cake led me to a state of Nirvana.
Just as fun and less fattening was a balloon ride above Albuquerque courtesy of Rainbow Ryders. We soared to 2000 feet, then descended to what seemed like inches above the Rio Grande, seeing the world below in a unique and surreal way. The ride is so glidingly smooth; it’s like canoeing through the air but without having to paddle, all of which provides an unforgettable experience. (Because of its topography and air currents, Albuquerque just happens to be the hot air ballooning capital of the world!)
While I may have descended from the skies, my stay in New Mexico still has me high as a hot air balloon from its natural beauty and major quotient of fun.