The Vacation Atlas

Inside Albuquerque’s Newest Luxury Stay

Mar 31, 2024 | Uncategorized

Tucked above the twinkling city lights and nestled amongst thousands of acres of the Cibola National Forest, Luxury Retreat NM stands at the awe-inspiring base of the great Sandia Mountains. I was invited by owner, designer, builder, and host, Rebekah Green, to come and experience this very special place for myself.

The 8 bedroom, 4 bathroom property is laid out over 3 levels totalling 5,500 square feet and was intentionally designed to host meaningful gatherings like wellness retreats, family reunions, and micro weddings. Being only 20 minutes from the city of Albuquerque and 35 from the main airport, this location promises ease of transport while still enabling solitude in nature– important things to consider when welcoming groups of people from afar for an event. 

The style of this property can be best described as luxe and modern, with a touch of character in the form of handmade recycled wood doors throughout the house.

A minimalist at heart, Rebekah opted almost entirely out of placing art on the walls, choosing instead, to meticulously orient the house and each window in a way that ensured every room had the best and most breathtaking view possible. As she says, “the views are the art”.  

​​Speaking of art and color, every evening, during the magical New Mexican sunset, each wall in the entire house vibrates with golden light as the mountain behind it turns an impossible hue of hot pink. Reflecting light off the granite rock that the Sandia Mountains are almost exclusively made of, you get to experience firsthand why the celebrated range was named after the Spanish word for “watermelon”.

As I got to know Rebekah and spent time at the house, it’s evident that every single facet of this property was thought through and intentional. The stellar design is just the tip of the iceberg. Nothing was left to chance, and everything was tended to with great consciousness.  Even the trees that were dug up to make space for the home’s footprint were lovingly replanted elsewhere on the grounds. You can somehow feel this level of intention as soon as you walk in the door.

I stayed in the downstairs main suite (which, incidentally, was shockingly similar to the bedroom and bathroom that I have designed in my floor plan for my dream house). One of my favorite details of this bedroom is the door to the walk-in closet that’s placed perpendicular to the door you enter the room from. This creates a mini hallway, separating the door to the bedroom from the actual room and creates an additional buffer between the sleeping area and any possible hallway disruptions. 

The lavish, perfectly proportioned bathroom attached to this large bedroom opens with hand-crafted, recycled-cedar-wood double doors, immediately making you feel the grand spaciousness of the room. The en suite bathroom comes complete with a standalone soaking bathtub directly under a picturesque forest view that is also enjoyed from the large walk-in shower beside it.  A separate room for the toilet, a luxurious double vanity with vessel sinks, deep-set golden mirrors, and a linen-covered seating area for post bathing primping, finish the room with comfort, class, and style. 

From taking a bath in triple-filtered roof-catchment rainwater, powering my laptop and making coffee each day by harnessing the sun’s rays, this place is the perfect balance between luxury and sustainability.

I was also treated to a three-course meal by private chef Shirley Temple. The menu prepared for my brisk February visit was a hearty, soul-soothing green chile stew (with the most tender meat and perfect level of heat), a super-moist and locally-inspired blue corn focaccia, a beet, feta, and radicchio salad, followed by an impossibly rich, creamy dark chocolate mousse with raspberries. 

Shirley has cooked all over the globe and says that she loves letting the local ingredients inform and inspire her dishes … hence, the creative use of blue corn in the focaccia and her masterful fusion of green chile in the stew–both New Mexico staples.

As I finished my mousse and sipped on my organic coconut water, I pondered what more one could want in a true retreat venue. With hiking trails just outside your door, all the convenience of being near a big city, a spacious design to enable an instant meditative state, and the option of a private chef onsite, This gem hidden within the hillside has it all. 

So whether your retreat-seeking group is looking to cocoon, create, collaborate or connect, you’re likely to find more than you bargained for at Luxury Retreat NM.

On my last night I spotted a fox just outside my window and I was reminded of what it feels like when architecture is successfully woven into the landscape and harmonizes with the nature around it. It feels like peace… which is precisely what inspires the state of stillness needed to spot a fox solely by its silhouette in the moonlight.

Mia headshot

Written By Mia Stallard

Mia Stallard is an adventure blogger and content creator documenting unique stays and experiences. She's based wherever there’s wifi and a good view, but currently resides in the magical mountains of Northern New Mexico. Her hobbies include drinking overpriced lattes in swanky cafes, road trips through the desert, and skinny dipping in naturally occurring bodies of water across the globe.

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