Nestled away in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, just outside of Santa Fe, is the most unexpected oasis for your soul at the Four Seasons Rancho Encantado.  The surprisingly spiritual details of the luxurious boutique hotel invite you to slow down from the busyness of life and connect to what is important through the timeless traditions, serene nature, nourishing food, energizing people, and awe-inspiring animals.

Timeless Tradition

The transformational experience starts with a smudging ceremony, a centuries-old tradition of using a smoke bath to cleanse and purify the body and let go of anything no longer serving you in their lush spa.  The timing could not have been more perfect.  I was reflecting on the blessings of the past year and looking at what I want to create in the new year.  It felt like I was making space for all my dreams to make manifest.

Serene Nature

As you stroll around the property of the Four Seasons amidst the Pinyon Pine and Juniper forest you cannot help but be in the moment as you take in the fresh smell of the trees, breathe in the crispness in the air, and revel under the vastness of the brilliant blue sky.  The trails around the property allow you to immerse yourself in nature fully and feel the earth on your feet if you are so willing.  In the evening you can soak in the sunset over the mountains as if it were a painting from Santa Fe’s renowned art galleries.  The nights were so clear you lay under millions of stars making wishes with every falling one.  I got to be one with Mother Nature and feel like I was more connected to life than ever before.

Energizing People

Everywhere you go you are greeted with a warm smile and an energy that lights up the world.  I felt like everyone I met was living their passion inspiring to me to live my own.  There was Ismar “Izzy” Uzicanin who manages the innovative Adventure Center offering unique experiences such as mountain biking through the breathtaking beauty or hiking through the timeless Bandelier National Monument to learn about Santa Fe’s rich history of the Pueblo people.  You could feel Izzy’s passion for history and nature in every story he shared.


Food, when prepared with love and fully appreciated, can connect people to a deeper sense of life by feeling more alive with every bite.  Chef Kevin Walsh and his brilliant team welcomed my friends and me into the kitchen to indulge in six courses of creative delicacies at the chef’s table.  They crafted the most delicious fare such as chile bacon wrapped bison short rib that exploded with flavor.  The flavors were dancing on my tongue and making me more present to life to take in all of the talent I was tasting.  Chef Kevin’s love of food, and life was infused in everything I ate nourishing my body and soul and making me feel more alive.


Perhaps the most unanticipated part of the spiritual experience was my time in the sacred place of Thunderbird Ridge surrounded by the most heartwarming horses and teachers you could dream of.  “How you do anything is how you do everything” are the wise words of Kelly Wendorf, co-founder of Equus Santa Fe who I was introduced to by the Four Seasons.

Kelly brings this profound lesson to life with the transformational Equus Experience she and her co-founder, Scott Strachan, have intentionally designed interacting with the ancient wisdom of horses.

The transformation begins with a deep conversation with Kelly and Scott exploring who you are and what would support you in life at this time.  They then guide you to work with their mighty, yet gentle, horses to reflect the essence of who you truly are.  As I looked in the eyes of these magical horses I was reminded of how powerful I truly am encouraging me to always live my dreams.

So often people think transformational work has to hard.  While it is not always easy it can be done in luxury.  If you are looking for a lavish place to refresh your soul the Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado is where to go.  Each detail is so brilliantly designed to help you connect with what is important in life and make choices in the direction of your dreams.  The Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado has created a new way to think of a dream vacation.