Page 1

the many shades

Northern New Mexico

of green building ® ®

inspiration ideas resources

performance art Las Campanas home hits all the high notes


remodels big + small

barn doors VOL. 23 NO. 1 WINTER 2017

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Live in a place where ‘getting away from it all’ is as simple as stepping through your own back door. Nestled within 3,000 acres of serene New Mexican wildlife, homes in Mariposa are designed to fit your unique needs and style with custom floor plans from a wide range of builders and seemingly endless features. Hike or bike our miles of trails, take a yoga class at our fitness center or relax poolside with a good book, and you’ll find more than the perfect blend of lifestyle and luxury here. You’ll discover a part of yourself.

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photography by Wendy McEahern

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Consis t e n t ly t h e be s t Designing and building the finest homes in Santa Fe for over thirty-nine years wo o ds d e s i g N b u i ld e r s 302 Catron street, santa Fe, New Mexico 87501




Northern New Mexico


Chris Corrie

inspiration ideas resources

40 southwestern

homes 32

this one’s for us

The Woods family, of Woods Design Builders, makes their living building homes for others to enjoy, but this stunning Santa Fe remodel is all their own.


performance art

A green, contemporary, and award-winning blend of design, art, and acoustics sets this one-of-a-kind Las Campanas home apart.


less is just enough

Rather than embarking on a costly, full-scale renovation, an Albuquerque couple opts to renovate a few key areas of their home, and the results are transformative.

20 6

S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

Bob Brazell Photography for La Puerta Originals

The best place to start designing your new kitchen is in one of ours. When it comes to sophisticated style and exceptional craftsmanship, the Monogram collection stands out in a class of its own. Every piece is carefully crafted to make a statement in your home, and meticulously engineered to indulge your passion for culinary perfection. Let one of our elite kitchen specialists share their knowledge and expertise to help you bring the style and refinement of Monogram appliances to your new kitchen. Experience our showroom today. 308 Menaul NE Albuquerque, NM 87107 505.889.3001

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32 in every issue

14 Inside Su Casa

16 Life+Style Southwest Sliding barn doors add a touch of charm and functionality to a variety of home styles; green building and energy- and water-efficient home design is at an all time high; a product roundup of chic barstools for the home bar or dining area.

26 Design Studio A visually stunning recap of ShowHouse Santa Fe 2016, which followed the colorful theme “Everything Old Is New Again: Mexico!”

On the cover: A bold and beautiful blend of art and performance, this green home is a model of sustainability and aging in place design. Read more on page 40. Photograph by Chris Corrie.



30 Enchanted Spaces

Moll Anderson on the power of color and a preview of her forthcoming book, Change Your Life ™ with Color: What’s Your Color Story? Gruet Winery renovates their tasting room in Albuquerque and opens a bubbly little tasting room in Santa Fe at the historic Hotel St. Francis.

58 V ida Buena Discover the different sides of Taos, New Mexico; check out indoor cycling, a winter-appropriate exercise offering numerous health benefits.

64 S u Libro

Celebrating a cultural icon, ¡Órale! Lowrider: Custom Made in New Mexico is a beautiful coffee table book produced in conjunction with two museum exhibitions in Santa Fe.

72 What’s Happening?

Local performances, events, and festivals for all to enjoy from January to March. 8

S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

Furniture & Mattress Courtesy American Home

54 Su Cocina

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6565 Americas Pkwy #200 ABQ, NM 87110

Northern New Mexico

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Su Casa Northern New Mexico (ISSN 1094-4562 & USPS # 2-3618) Volume 23, Number 1, Winter 2017. Su Casa Northern New Mexico is published quarterly in March, June, September, and December by Bella Media, LLC at Pacheco Park, 1512 Pacheco St, Ste D-105, Santa Fe, NM 87505, USA, Phone (505) 983-1444. © Copyright 2017 by Bella Media, LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is strictly prohibited. Basic annual subscription rate is $9.95, Canada & Mexico is $23.95, Other international countries is $27.95. U.S. single-copy price is $5.95. Back issues are $6.95 each. Periodicals postage paid at Albuquerque, NM, and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send all UAA to CFS. NON-POSTAL AND MILITARY FACILITIES: send address corrections to Su Casa Northern New Mexico P.O. Box 16925, North Hollywood, CA 91615-6925 Subscription Customer Service: Su Casa Northern New Mexico P.O. Box 16925, North Hollywood, CA 91615-6925 Phone (818) 286-3162, Fax (800) 869-0040,,

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H om e Bu il de rs Asso c ia tio n o f C e nt r a l Ne w M e xic o Boa r d o f D ire c to rs

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Inside Su Casa

consider the possibilities environmentally friendly. I got it all. So can you. Not only can you achieve the beauty and practicality you desire, you can also be environmentally friendly. Here in New Mexico we are blessed to live in a state where contractors, designers, and remodelers are highly skilled in green building. Now’s an opportune time to consider how your home could be more satisfying. How did it work for entertaining during the holidays? Do you have appropriate spaces for your activities? Do you like the way it looks? Most importantly, when you look around does it make you feel good about yourself and your life? Life’s too short to not be thrilled by your home. Builders and designers are a wealth of information and happy to make suggestions about how your home might be transformed into a place you can’t wait to get back to. And that’s the goal.

Bruce Adams Publisher


S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017



he dark and chilly days of winter allow us a lot of “at home” time. This might mean being able to pursue indoor hobbies and interests or possibly spending more time with family. Regardless, we use more of the interiors of our homes at this time of the year, and as a result, we begin to examine how well our homes work for us on both a practical and an aesthetic level. Those two concepts are not mutually exclusive. In this issue of Su Casa Northern New Mexico, you will meet a pair of opera singers-turned-teachers who created a home that’s at once beautiful, surprising, dramatic, and colorful—plus it’s designed with incredible acoustics appropriate to their profession. Their story is our story. Our existing homes can also achieve this level of aesthetic practicality. We can, in most cases, easily transform our homes (or parts of them) to better fit our lifestyle and create beautiful spaces. As an amateur musician, I installed hardwood floors to bring out the sound of my piano. Not only has the floor become an extension of the sound board, it’s also gorgeous, easy to clean, and highly durable. Being bamboo, it’s a renewable wood and is

Life+Style Southwest Strolling through ShowHouse Santa Fe as a visitor felt a little like Alice wandering wide-eyed through Wonderland, so the amazing, tiny space Matt and Heather French of French & French Interiors called “The Keyhole Room” (for obvious reasons) felt like a fun and appropriate reference. Matt, who did the majority of the design of this unusual space, notes that although the current owners purposed it as a media room, he deliberately closed off the entertainment center with an ikat curtain so as to spark his own creativity in a way that would bring the ShowHouse theme (“Everything Old Is New Again: Mexico!”) to life. As an added bonus, Matt discovered visitors touring ShowHouse were just as—if not more—creative in speculating how they might purpose the cozy “intentional space,” as Matt calls it. continued on page 65


S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

Lou Novick

through the keyhole

Tierra Concepts is honored to have won an unprecedented 5 Grand Hacienda Awards get inspired :

Life+Style Southwest

by Catherine Adams


refinement barn doors bridge every style home with artistic flair


ot long ago, if you wanted to see a sliding barn door, you’d have to find a farm first. Today, however, barn doors are a common sight in homes from country to contemporary, made of everything from reclaimed wood to smoked glass. Unlike hinge or pocket doors, barn-style doors are attached to rollers that slide along massive hardware placed above the door. The door—or doors— glide along iron rails against the wall, rather than opening outward. Once purely functional, modern barn doors are a decorative change-up from ordinary doors. “Interior barn doors serve a dual purpose as both a space-saving option and a design element,” says Melissa Coleman, president of La Puerta Originals (lapuertaoriginals .com) in Santa Fe, which designs one-ofa-kind woodworks from doors to cabinetry for clients around the county. Often larger than the average inner door—and sometimes used two at a time to close a particularly wide opening—a barn door essentially opens up part of the wall and increases usable square footage in a room since it doesn’t swing out. “When you open the door it enlarges the room, and leaves a work of art hanging there,” Coleman explains. So while barn doors take up more wall space than pocket doors, for many, their aesthetic qualifies them as art. “Barn doors are a nice architectural element that adds artistry to a space,” says Jennifer Ashton, designer and owner of Santa Fe–based Jennifer Ashton Interiors ( They are especially useful, says Ashton, for creating gracious transition between spaces that are often


S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

unrelated in style such as “from laundry room to hallway,” she notes. “Barn doors can also open up a living room and dining area, or add warmth and dimension” when moving from a bedroom to a sitting room, or a master bedroom to an adjoining master bath. Albuquerque builder Ted Lowe, owner of Lowe-Bo Homes (lowe-bohomes .com) has been incorporating sliding barn doors into his new builds for years—due in large part to the demand of savvy clients who follow home design internet sites. “The internet is driving demand,” says Lowe. Not only that, the digital exchange of ideas is eating away at regional style, giving builders like Lowe the freedom to experiment with combining different design elements within more traditional home styles. Sliding barn doors are a perfect crossover element. “People see things online and want them incorporated into their homes,” notes Lowe. “As builders we need to become expert in styles from other areas.” Although wood doors are still the most common, both Ashton and Lowe say they are seeing more contemporary applications of the sliding barn

Jennifer Ashton Interiors used a sliding barn door made of wood plank alder set into a metal frame to soften the transition between two contemporary spaces.

Bob Brazell Photography

Laurie Allegretti

Amy Gross

Johnelle Korioth

Incorporating opaque glass and stainless steel hardware for a contemporary look, Boulevard Homes used a sliding door (left) to seamlessly divide a bathroom from a bedroom, while a door by Lowe-Bo Homes (below) adds depth to a neutral hallway even as it performs functionally to close off a pantry.

Although barn doors take up more wall space than pocket doors, for many, their aesthetic qualifies them as art.

door concept—mostly in the form of opaque glass with high-end stainless steel hardware. La Puerta Originals uses primarily reclaimed materials in the construction of all their custom doors—wood harvested from old army bases and warehouses of the West, then shipped to Santa Fe in bulk where her husband, Scott Coleman, oversees design and construction. Carved antique panels from the Middle East also make the trip from original use to repurposed application as space-saving door and design features. Straddling design styles from rustic to contemporary, embracing so many sizes, materials, applications, and price ranges, today’s sliding barn doors only hint at their original purpose. No longer purely functional, the barn-style door has become a surprising vehicle for artistic expression. Left: Rustic yet elegant, a sliding door made by La Puerta Originals of reclaimed Douglas fir marks the entrance to a garage.



Life+Style Southwest

by Ben Ikenson

shades of green energy and water efficiency lead the list of green building goals in 2017


growing number of homeowners are learning that it actually is easy being green. In fact, sustainable building techniques are so prevalent today that the very phrase “green building” is likely to become a quaint redundancy in coming years. Fortunately for New Mexicans, the local design and construction community is at the forefront of the green building movement and includes many talented and knowledgeable individuals who have seen the industry and technology evolve. Faren Dancer of Sundancer Creations, an award-winning Santa Fe–based custom home design firm specializing in sustainable building practices, says that while certified green building programs, such as Build Green New Mexico (BGNM) and LEED for Homes, typically feature six categories (site impact, energy efficiency, water efficiency, resource efficiency, healthy indoor air quality, and homeowner education), “the trend in New Mexico, specifically within Santa Fe City and County Codes, is now focusing on energy and water savings almost exclusively.” According to Dancer, starting with a tight building envelope will reduce heating and cooling loads, as will superior R-value insulation. “Also,” he says, “the understanding of the building science within wall structures that eliminates classic thermal bypass, which is the movement of air from one plane to another within the framing structure, is one of my own primary building practices.” Reducing or eliminating thermal bypass is achieved, says Dancer, “by sealing all penetrations for electrical and plumbing in top plates and the application of blown-in insulation to eliminate air movement.” Norm Schreifels, owner of Sun Mountain Construction in Corrales, has been building green custom homes for nearly 30 years. A 22

S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

Solar remains one of the most popular energy efficiency initiatives in residential housing, especially with homeowners hoping to create a net zero energy usage to production ratio.

founding member of the BGNM program, Schreifels notes that all of his houses are built to BGNM Silver Level as a matter of standard. He and his company believe in a whole-house approach to green building, from design through mechanical. Noting that insulation and a tight shell are critical, Schreifels nevertheless cautions against over-sealing. “A lot of guys are preaching about how tight their houses are, but I’m preaching that that’s a problem,” he says. “You don’t want to have your house too tight; you have to control some air movement and fresh air, or you’re going to get sick.” Schreifels is extremely informed of the materials his company uses and is constantly policing construction waste on his projects. If a client insists on carpeting, he asks them to choose a Green Label Plus carpet, which gives off fewer emissions. “Most people just want a comfortable, efficient home that’s not going to make them sick,” says Schreifels. “So many people are focusing on the word green, but my conversations with my customers focus on the word healthy.” Mark Giorgetti, the principal of Santa Fe’s Palo Santo Designs LLC, has overseen the

design and construction of many award-winning green homes, including “net-zero” homes, which are designed to generate as much as, if not more, energy than they consume from the grid. He has also observed the evolution in local green building trends. Echoing Dancer’s observations, Giorgetti credits the prevalence of green building codes, such as the City of Santa Fe’s, which place emphasis on energy and water efficiency. “The total life-cycle environmental impact of a home is about 80 percent in operations— heating, cooling, lighting, water—and just 20 percent in the materials used,” Giorgetti explains. “So insulation, LED lighting, stateof-the-art HVAC, and water-efficient plumbing are all becoming more important to delivering high-performance green homes.”    In addition to the rapidly evolving technologies that are making green building more viable, Giorgetti adds that demographic trends are helping as well. “More of our older clients, as well as the younger ones, want smaller, low-maintenance homes that are built to last,” he says. “That demand naturally lends itself to the kind of homes that are now best being described as green.”




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Life+Style Southwest

by Amanda Jackson

belly up to the [home] bar barstools for all styles


Courtesy Molecule Design

hen purchasing new furniture for your home, barstools might not be the first furnishings that come to mind. However, a meticulously selected barstool sets the tone for your home bar or elevated dining area. The selections below range from modern to traditional, plus a few styles in between, and there’s a barstool for every taste.

Furniture & Mattre ss

Marcel Wanders Monster Bar Stool Divina Melange Designed by Marcel Wanders for Moooi, this elegant stitched fabric barstool comes in a regular height (42.5") and a low height (40.2"); both have a seat width of just over 20" inches. Fully covered atop an upholstered steel frame, the Monster offers 25 unique color options.

Zuo Mod Reykjavik Counter Chair A midcentury modern barstool to make your friends green with envy. Sold in sets of two, these low-backed stools complement a minimalist sensibility. With its slender, tapered metal legs, the Reykjavik is 30" in height with seat width of 18". Fabric is available in brown, gray, green (shown), and orange. $573 set of two, American Home Furniture & Mattress, 24

S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

Courtesy Ernest Thompson

Courtesy America n Home

$1,823 regular height, $1,770 low height, Molecule Design,

Courtesy Designer Warehouse

Hide Barstool Funky, fresh, and seriously plush, this leather and hide barstool (39" high and 24" wide) is not for the shrinking violet. The seat back and seat are clad in top grain black leather, while the back of the chair is covered in a luxurious black and white hide. Completing the look is a polished nickel finish metal frame. $1,980, Designer Warehouse,

Country Counter Stool With every piece made to order, this rustic classic by Ernest Thompson can be perfectly tailored to fit your home. Shown here in a dark finish with clear wax, it sits 44" high, with a 17" width. Box cushion and fabric (with additional options) are priced separately. $972, Ernest Thompson,

Design Studio

by Amy Gross

photographs by Lou Novick

old Mexico, meet New Mexico ShowHouse Santa Fe 2016


t was the ultimate remodel—a home transformation of staggering proportion and detail. After months of feverish planning, drawing, creating, ordering, and painting, the annual design phenomenon known as ShowHouse Santa Fe came together in a flurry of activity last October, thanks to some 30 interior and landscape designers and artists in residence exercising creative license around the theme “Everything Old Is New Again: Mexico!”

Even after spending several hours strolling through the expansive estate, visitors would find themselves marveling at yet another gorgeously designed space. No two rooms were even remotely similar—before or after the transformations—and the riot of color ensuing from the theme left the senses reeling. Even after spending several hours strolling through the expansive estate, visitors would find themselves marveling at yet another gorgeously designed space—a hacienda-style atrium, a grand dining room, a Frida Kahlo– inspired sitting room, or an artist’s secret loft. The historic residence, which is listed by Santa Fe Properties’ Bodelson-Spier Team, dates to 1926, though additions built on

Inspired by the colors of old Mexico, Wiseman & Gale & Duncan Interiors anchored the atrium with a massive painting by Jim Waid, upholstered the “New” Mexico metal chairs in bright Peruvian-style textiles by Robert Allen, and added whimsical “old” Mexican touches throughout the room and on the walls.


S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

“My whole room was about ‘Fanta Se’ sunsets,” says Marty Wilkinson of Metamorphosis. To create a sunset effect, Bekye Fargason painted the ombre walls of this sumptuous guest bedroom using a delicious fuchsia as the starting point. The massive bed, decorated with draperies, bedding, and pillows designed by Wilkinson with fabrics from Lee Jofa, is actually suspended from the ceiling, with a perfect view of a gorgeous chandelier the homeowners purchased in San Miguel de Allende. SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


In creating their elegant dining room, Patti Stivers and Virginia Smith of Stivers & Smith Interiors wanted to capture “the soul of the house.” Fabric-covered seating and stenciling by Mary McIntyre softened the dark wood furnishings, while a contemporary interpretation of the Madonna (by artist Gregory Lomayesva) above an old Spanish altar exemplified the ShowHouse theme.

Left: The guesthouse’s full kitchen received a makeover thanks to David Naylor of David Naylor Interiors and Edy Keeler of Core Value Interiors. The subtle use of primary colors in the cheery red cabinetry from Kitchens by Jeanné, the antiqued yellow walls, and the blue and white tile from Statements In Tile/Lighting/Kitchens/Flooring created a charming sense of old Mexico meeting New Mexico.

over the years had turned it into an 8,000-squarefoot property with plenty of spaces needing makeovers when the ShowHouse team discovered it in 2016. Its main house, guesthouse, numerous cubbies, lofts, outdoor spaces, portales, and fun niches clearly fired the imaginations of the designers and artists in residence. In its fourth year, attendance increased dramatically, anchoring ShowHouse as Santa Fe’s must-see annual design event. Since its beginnings, ShowHouse has proudly operated as a fundraiser for Dollars4Schools, a local nonprofit that helps fund programs for Santa Fe–area students. Funds raised at the 2016 event exceeded all expectations—as did the amazing, imaginative work of the designers themselves. Left: The living room, designed by Kendra Henning, Jeff Fenton, and Chris Martinez of Reside Home, was a mélange of materials and textures. Inspired by San Miguel de Allende (where, as Henning notes, “the houses are all color blocked”), Martinez designed the colorful Mondrian-esque wall. Pieces from POLaRT added color (the inverted grandfather clock) and whimsy (the white “tête à tête” chair). 28

S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

We welcome you to contact us for all your real estate needs.

Joan DiGiovanna (505) 907-6387

Mary Bader (505) 301-9216

John Brewer (505) 850.0460

Linda DeVlieg Helen Demott (505) 440-7200 (505) 610-8355

Kim Jensen (505) 948-1399

Lynn Johnson (505) 350-5966

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Annie OĘźConnell (505) 263-4141

Gary Peterson, CRS (505) 280-1952

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Meryl Manning Segel (505) 250-5988

Shirley Rich, CRS (505) 280-8811

Tracy Venturi & The Venturi Team (505) 263-2526

Keller Williams Realty Academy 6703 Academy Boulevard NE Albuquerque, NM 87109 505-271-8200

Keller Williams Realty Riverside 6240 Riverside Plaza NW, Suite 100 Albuquerque, NM 87120 505-897-1100

Keller Williams Realty Rio Grande 901 Rio Grande Blvd NE, Suite C-172 Albuquerque, NM 87102 505-271-8200

Enchanted Spaces

by Moll Anderson

there is something about color! discover the hues that will inspire your own color journey


ere we are in the dreary days of winter—the sunlight has dissipated, the skies are often gray and gloomy, and the luxurious landscape is now replaced with neutral tones of a world gone to sleep. There is no better time than right now to be bold and to transform your life from beige monotony to a world filled with beautiful, vibrant colors. transform your life with color I’ve just finished my new book Change Your Home, Change Your Life™ with Color: What’s Your Color Story? My excitement over the message is just welling up in me. I cannot wait for the book to be released in March! I believe I was meant to share my journey about color, and this book is all about the transforming power that color has on your home and your life. Whether you realize it or not, color rules—rules your home, your emotions, your life. Your emotional


Left: Colorful pillows, blankets, and throws can bring color to a neutral sofa or bedroom—plus the touch of warmth they add is always especially welcome in the winter months!

Left, inset: “This beautiful instagram pic of a bird in the middle of a blanket of snow proves that a pop of color can transform your energy,” says Moll. ”By pulling the colors directly from the picture you can create an amazing palette.” 30

S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017


response to color is based on your experiences and memories, and like any memory, color can evoke happy feelings—or not so happy ones. I was personally transformed emotionally and physically by finding out and understanding what my “color story” was all about. We all have one, and I hope that I will encourage you to begin your own colorful journey. what hue is truly for you? Color inspiration can come from almost anywhere. Consider the images and photos you have captured in your life, and use these to call attention to the colors that have surrounded you. What do your photo memories reveal? What colors and color combinations are you drawn to? Is there a common thread? Start capturing what speaks to you and use it later as inspiration to create something special. No longer are these photos just memories—now they are documented inspiration. I call it insta-inspiration! It’s not always about a full remodel of your space. Sometimes a little color comes to the rescue just when you need it.

Jeff Katz Photography

Editor’s Note: Don’t miss our exciting Q&A with Moll in the Spring 2017 issue of Su Casa Northern New Mexico, plus a peek into her beautiful new book, Change Your Home, Change Your Life™ with Color: What’s Your Color Story?

Moll Anderson Life stylist, inspirational interior designer, and philanthropist Moll Anderson is an Emmy Award–winning television personality and the best-selling author of five books, including Change Your Home, Change Your Life™ with Color, arriving March 2017.

this one’s for us

Shane Woods’s Santa Fe home is remodeled by his family, for his family

Through custom double doors, a graceful entry greets visitors to Shane and Deborah Woods’s award-winning home in Wilderness Gate.


S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

by Frances Madeson photographs by Chris Corrie


hane and Deb Woods and their sons Ashton, 5, and Braden, 2 ½, are the kind of loving, tight-knit young family who’d probably be happy anywhere—in a bungalow, a cabin, or even a yurt—as long as they were together. But for the last half year, their familial coziness has enjoyed the luxury of sprawl in a splendid home with acreage bordering on Atalaya Mountain in Santa Fe. And that has its pleasures, too. “Every morning I wake up and have my coffee watching the sun rise on the Jemez Mountains, and I pinch myself that I really live here,” says Shane, whose family-run business, Woods Design Builders, has been building and remodeling high-end homes in Santa Fe since the 1970s. “In such a short time this place has become a comfortable safe haven for our family.” Despite their prowess at building new homes, Shane, brother Rob (who runs the business side of the company), and mom and designer Sharon, who founded the company, admit their preference for taking existing homes and renovating them to their own personal taste. Such was the case here. “The previous owners had no children, but we could see the house’s potential immediately,” Shane explains. “We bought it the day it came on the market, paid full price, no contingencies.” And then they gutted it.

“In such a short time this place has become a comfortable safe haven for our family.”—Shane Woods The comprehensive remodel, which included the addition of 2,500 square feet of space in all directions—including up—took about a year, during which time the family lived in their old house and an interim rental. According to Shane, Deb and Sharon took “an extra passion” in expanding the contours of this home. “It’s very proportionalized, and it’s very warm,” he says with a measure of pride at the lustrous results that earned Woods Design Builders a Best Craftsmanship Award in the 2016 Santa Fe Parade of Homes. Both he and Deb marvel at the extra effort made by every Woods employee, especially when it came to the woodwork. “The wood flooring is a white oak with a custom finish,” Shane says. “We wanted to go very light with the cabinets; Deb likes things neutral, more gray tones.” Deb, an anesthesiologist, agrees she finds the monochromatic palette soothing, especially after a stressful and grueling 70-hour work week. Coming home to soft, mother-of-pearl tones, high ceilings, airy rooms, and of course her healthy family safely ensconced inside their clamshell is Deb’s daily joy and a boon to her spirit. “You can’t help but lose yourself in the beauty of the place. Some days I just want to lock myself in and never leave,” she only half-jokes.

Above: Every detail in the home is carefully considered. The house is incredibly livable and accessible—except for perhaps the formal living room, known to the kiddos as the “No-No Room.”

The 5,500-square-foot, multilevel residence is sited on about five acres to capture the Jemez Mountains, thanks to well-placed new windows throughout. Shane points out the fun places where the family cuddles to watch a movie in a big pile-on or spreads out on the floor to play a board game. “We come together, and then we go our separate ways and have our own space,” he says. The children’s suite, for example, is located on the top floor and comprises a playroom, the boys’ bedroom suites, and a nanny nook—a design element often found in Woods homes—perfect for reading or napping in the afternoon sun. Before joining the family business Shane was a partner in two restaurants in California where he received a lot of wine training. Thus the custom, well-stocked wine room is “his” space—though he’s quick to note that “wine is about sharing.” The entry of the house was repositioned to make it more emphatically the entry. The formal living room (known as the “No-No Room” to the kids) was a new addition entirely. The new house evolved organically around the old house, making use of antique and reclaimed materials: a hearth room with an antique European mantel, the dining room with reclaimed SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM



S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

Serene and uncluttered, the formal living room puts the focus on a fireplace with an antique limestone surround. A massive picture window brings mountain views into the room by day and Santa Fe city light views by night.

The Woodses’ home offers flexibility in design that can accommodate the family in the future. Deb and Ashton color on the kitchen island, which will soon become a prime spot for doing homework.

The breakfast nook is perfect for daily, informal dining, and even comes with its own gorgeous view.

terra-cotta from Spain and France, and a lovely antique French fountain, purchased at a local consignment shop, that marks the front door. Though currently claimed by Deb, an office was designed for when the kids start bringing homework home and everyone can work in the same space together. The expansive kitchen, too, with yards of counter space, is as functional as it is exquisitely crafted. Tucked into niches and frames throughout the home are antique doors from Mexico, which Shane says are harder and harder to come by. Much of their art collection was bought at charitable events benefiting the National Dance Institute and the Cancer Foundation. (Deb’s mom is a two-time breast cancer survivor, and Shane’s sister-in-law, who lost her brother to leukemia, spearheads the annual fundraising event.)

In the expansive kitchen, ample cabinets and drawers mean everything has a place—out of sight. Topped with gleaming Taj Mahal granite, the counters offer tons of prep and buffet space. Deb and Shane say they use every bit of it when they’re entertaining, which is often.



The master suite, located a few steps down a curving stairwell, is spacious and private. A romantic Romeo and Juliet balcony off the master bedroom captures breathtaking vistas, while the expansive bathroom features hand-stenciled Tabarka tile and a deep porcelain soaking tub.

The new house evolved organically around the old house, making use of antique and reclaimed materials.

Beams, diamond-plaster walls, and hardwood floors are the hallmarks of stately Santa Fe style. Extended Woods family fits easily in the elegant formal dining room.

Above: The kids have their own wing of the house, but the climate-controlled custom wine room off the dining room is Mom and Dad’s special space. 36

S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

Shane purchased several sets of beautiful old Mexican doors from a Santa Fe antiques shop before it closed. The doors, with original pulls, lock sets, and decorative clavos (below), add plenty of authentic charm to the home; turn almost any corner and you’ll run into a set covering a niche or closet.

Outside there are portales and gardens, a trampoline area, and a sizable lawn of faux grass (“it’s high-end synthetic grass, not Astroturf!” Shane and Deb joke) where Shane, who coaches his son’s soccer team, and Ashton can practice their drills, and the kids can run around with abandon with their big floppy dog. After a year of constant decision-making, living in temporary housing, worrying about the thousands of little details that go into a home renovation of this scope, and even enduring two long weekends of hosting thousands of visitors during the Parade of Homes, the Woods family is finally settled in. Though the move was personal, Shane notes that, as a builder, the entire process was eye-opening. “Going through a big remodel like this makes me feel more empathy for my clients,” he says. “Everybody has a budget, no matter what. You’re reminded about keeping to the construction schedule, how important that is. And then there’s job cleanliness; I wouldn’t want to come

In the children’s suite, the inviting “nanny nook”—a Woods signature feature—is ideal for stealing a nap.

Left: To keep pace with the family’s love of entertaining, a comfortable seating area beneath the deep, wraparound rear portal easily accommodates gatherings.

Below: Shane and Deborah Woods, with sons Braden and Ashton, enjoying their Santa Fe home.

Below: Divided light windows show off the eminently touchable beeswaxfinished walls of an airy stairwell.

Despite their prowess at building new homes, most members of the Woods family admit their preference for renovating existing homes to their own personal taste.

In classic Woods style, the master suite is dreamy and romantic. A balcony off the bedroom (far left) brings beautiful vistas straight into the room, while natural light suffusing the master bath (left) shows off the creamy cabinets, clawfoot tub, and Tabarka tile to gorgeous effect.



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S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

Simple landscaping allows the beauty of the surrounding hills to come forward, while a patch of kidand dog-friendly faux lawn is perfect for soccer practice.


HOME La Puerta Originals. Artisans of your hand-crafted dream door.


home and find trash on the job site.” Deb is currently transitioning to a part-time schedule so she can spend more time with her family while the kids are growing up. Everyone is very pleased about that. It’s not lost on her that after spending so much time planning and building her new residence, she’s finally able to spend more time enjoying the home she wishes she could lock herself in and never leave. Who could blame her?



of HAVING an



Photo: Bob Brazell

resources Builder/Remodeler Woods Design Builders

Appliances Builders Source Appliance Gallery


Cabinetry & Wine Room Santa Fe Custom Works

N  L A W D • B

Kitchen & Bath Sinks, Fixtures, Tub Santa Fe By Design Landscaping Chamisa Landscaping Lighting Allbright & Lockwood Violante & Rochford Interiors ©corrie photography

Kitchen & Bath Tile & Bathroom Counters Statements In Tile/Lighting/ Kitchens/Flooring

Homes & Remodels

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performance art an award-winning Las Campanas residence is many colors, including green


S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

by Amy Gross

photographs by Chris Corrie

Steven Yazzie’s Road to Nowhere is visible from the moment you enter the house. The painting’s fuchsias and golds inspired much of the home’s palette.


f there’s anything Brian Johnson and Marsha Hunter have learned over the years, it’s to keep an open mind and go where the road leads them. Trained to be professional opera singers and performers, Brian and Marsha figured their lives would be spent on the stage, always in front of an audience. They were half-right. Today they still spend a great deal of time at podiums, but as highly sought-out teachers of presentation and communication skills to attorneys. “We still get the performance buzz we used to get onstage, and we get to apply all those years we spent in private voice lessons, plus that skill and enthusiasm,” says Brian. “And we love our job!” his wife adds. “The people who attend our courses are interesting, they’re curious, and they’re motivated.” That sounds a lot like Brian and Marsha themselves. Having bought a lot in Santa Fe’s Las Campanas a few years back, the couple finally decided it was time to build their dream home. After conducting extensive interviews, they settled on Tierra Concepts Inc., to build it and Stephen Beili of Studio Dionisi Incorporated to design it. Beili in turn introduced them to Annie O’Carroll of Annie

Left: “We wanted to build a living room that was a beautiful musical instrument,” says Brian. Designed as a performance space, the room was built to an acoustician’s specifications, with acoustic ceiling panels, strategically placed interior adobe walls, and massive sliding doors that help manage sound. SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


A slab of magenta solid surface countertop material inspired more color throughout the home. To keep it in check, the team opted for calming walnut cabinetry and flooring. A sliding pocket door opens away in front of the waterfall island, offering a unique indoor-outdoor cooking perspective. 42

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Brian and Marsha started collecting midcentury Danish modern furniture years ago when it was out of fashion. All the rage today, it looks perfect in this contemporary hacienda. A niche in the kitchen (above) was specially designed to fit a beloved buffet and mirror set. “From the midcentury dining room table or the magenta counter, you can see the Sangres reflected in that mirror,” Marsha notes.

O’Carroll Interior Design, and Kenneth Francis of Surroundings was brought on to create the landscaping and outdoor living areas. It was clear from the get-go that Brian and Marsha’s would be as custom a home as one could get—and their team was on board. “We were trying to explain to Stephen [Beili] what were wanting to do,” Marsha recalls with a laugh. “He looked at us and said, ‘So I gather you’re looking for something between a circus and a concert hall.’”

“Stephen looked at us and said, ‘So I gather you’re looking for something between a circus and a concert hall.’”—Marsha Hunter After siting the home to capture gorgeous views of the Sangre de Cristos, “the main thing was they wanted their living room to be a performance space,” says Beili. “There would be a grand piano in the space, and they knew it would be an opportunity for them and their friends to perform for each other.” Through the Curtis Institute of Music where she attended school, Marsha was referred to an acoustician, Felicia Doggett, at Metropolitan Acoustics in Philadelphia. “We sent Felicia the dimensions of the living room and told her that the doors would open on both ends,” Marsha recalls. “She did a computer model for us, we met via Skype several times, and she told us what materials to use, how

thick the floors should be—even how thick the drapes needed to be and the weight of the lining.” Music wants mass, Brian and Marsha were told, so they added 12 premade acoustic panels to the ceiling, had two 600-pound sliding panel doors built that close off two of three spaces along one wall, and incorporated thick adobe walls covered by mud plaster that are not only functional, but beautiful in a rich ocher hue. Both ends of the living room do indeed open, via sliding glass pocket doors, with the piano end leading to a portal and the south-facing end opening to a “roofless room,” an enclosed courtyard-like area inspired by Georgia O’Keeffe’s house in Abiquiú. “It was as much about extending the performance space (and audience seating) as anything else,” says Tierra’s Kurt Faust. “And then the ephemeral pool water feature was one idea to make that space have even more meaning.” The ephemeral pool, the brainchild of Surroundings, is a rock-lined area that fills with water when it rains, then slowly drains, its look changing all the while. The water that does drain, according to Francis, is funneled to a cistern that irrigates the all-native plants that make up the landscaping. SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


With so much big color going on in the public spaces, other finishes were deliberately kept quiet— but still fun, as in the light-filled master bathroom.

Having never built a house before, Brian and Marsha were determined to enjoy the process and sidestep the horror stories that often accompany such projects. “Part of our goal was to have fun, and to trust our team,” says Brian. To that end, when O’Carroll and Beili—who both love color—came across a sample of solid surface countertop in a vivid fuchsia and then excitedly pitched it to their clients, Brian and Marsha went for it. “Then we found out it was discontinued,” O’Carroll remembers. “We were able to get one slab of it, so it made us commit to that color up front. Then it became a color we wove through the project.” A la Luis Barragán, magenta is prominent in one wall of the kitchen, in the living room/performance area drapes, in the custom Robin Gray rug in the living room, and even in some of the artwork. Coupled with the ocher walls, this is one colorful house, as many people who toured it during the 2016 Haciendas—A Parade of Homes delightedly discovered. But of all the colors this one-of-a-kind residence can boast, none has proven to be more gratifying to all involved than green. Thanks to a host of green building materials and systems—rooftop solar panels, healthy finishes, windows made from sustainably harvested wood, energy-efficient appliances and mechanical systems, a 6,000-gallon cistern for landscaping, and many other features—Brian and Marsha’s home was recently certified LEED Gold, plus won awards for Tierra Concepts for Best Energy Efficiency and Best Water Efficiency on the Parade of Homes. Add to that awards for Best Design and Best Outdoor Living, and you can bet its owners and design team were mighty proud of their efforts. And a little blown away.


S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

“We drove our design team a little crazy, because we kept saying, ’We’re building this house for four people: us, and really old us,’” says Brian. Elegant aging in place accommodations, such as a wheelchair-accessible vanity (left), were implemented at every opportunity.

“It’s so fun working with a smart team of people who have been building and designing houses together for years,” says Marsha. “They know how beautiful it’s going to be, and how a wonderful design element will make your life just beautiful. It’s such a privilege to be able to do a house like this.”

Below: Designed around a freestanding wall that houses closet space, the serene and calming master bedroom gets its own jolt of color from a patterned rug.



The larger of two “roofless rooms” is enclosed and private, but easily converts to extended audience space during private concerts. The ephemeral pool (at right) is a changing water feature that fills with rainwater, then irrigates the landscaping as it drains.

Even though Marsha and Brian, as they say, “hung up their vocal cords” years ago, the two former opera and folk singers still love to perform with and for each other. They look forward to inviting other talented musicians to their home to perform in small, private concerts.

“I was thinking recently that the wonderful team that helped us build this place ended up giving us a house we had no idea we wanted,” Brian marvels. “That was the fun of the creative process; they really guided us to a place we never even knew existed.”

resources Builder Tierra Concepts Inc. Cabinetry Kitchen Dimensions Countertops Counter Intelligence Designer Stephen Beili, Studio Dionisi Incorporated Gates, Metal Fabrication & Sliding Doors Rippel Metal Fabrication Interior Designer Annie O’Carroll Interior Design Landscaping Kenneth Francis, Surroundings Sliding Window Walls Architectural Windows & Doors Tile Statements In Tile/Lighting/Kitchens/Flooring Windows Sierra Pacific Windows


S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

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less is just enough


S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

by Jessa Cast photographs by Chris Corrie

a partial remodel invigorates an Albuquerque home and sets the stage for years of comfort and enjoyment


or many, remodeling a home is on the list of things to do “someday.” This was true for homeowners Dick and Susan Perry until they realized that “someday” is whenever you make it. Dick, a retired military pilot, and Susan, purchased their 3,600-square-foot North Albuquerque home in 1998 when it was already a few years old. Fifteen years later, their 1980s-era abode, while at the height of style when it was built, needed a makeover. Remodeling the entire house wasn’t an option budget-wise, or even really necessary; the owners just wanted to make a smattering of key improvements and needed expert guidance.

Remodeling the entire house wasn’t an option budget-wise, or even really necessary; the owners just wanted to make a smattering of key improvements.

Leaving the ‘80s firmly behind, the Perrys updated their mostly Formica kitchen with warm honeycolored custom cabinetry, rich Volcano granite, and stainless steel appliances. They also moved the sink over from an awkward corner and added a window (at left), which affords a beautiful view of their newly landscaped backyard.

By way of some trusted neighbors, the Perrys found Janet and Bain Cochran of Bain Cochran Construction LLC, a woman-owned and family-run company with over 30 years of experience building and remodeling custom homes. They take pride in their hands-on experience. “You can be a contractor on paper if you pass the test, but it doesn’t mean you’ve ever swung a hammer,” notes Janet, who has personally done much of the work in those years. The Cochrans listened carefully to Dick and Susan’s desires, noting Susan’s recent difficulty in the house after knee-replacement surgery, when she was forced to navigate thresholds and narrow doorways with a post-surgery walker. Janet made a suggestion. Instead of just bringing the décor into the 21st century, why not also incorporate adaptations for aging in place? A light came on. With the Cochrans’ expertise, Dick and Susan identified all the areas to undergo cosmetic and/or functional improvements, then quickly realized that living in the home during remodeling would simply not work. They opted to move out, thus beginning two-and-a-half months of a life-changing adventure. “It was ‘down to the concrete, up to the rafters, and out to the studs,’” says Dick of the comprehensive renovation. SUCASAMAGAZINE.COM


Ovens were moved to gain more counter space, and now there’s even room to handily store a few bottles of wine and mementos. Rich and warm, the cabinetry is unfussy but ultra-functional.

For aging-in-place enhancements, the floors in several rooms were raised to threshold level, making them wheelchair-accessible. The now-curbless master shower gained a second showerhead and control, reachable from a seated position. Similarly, the guest and master bathroom doors were altered to allow space for wheelchairs to enter and comfortably turn around, and grab bars were added in the wet areas. Seldom used, the master tub and sauna were easily discarded in favor of more cabinet and closet space in the master bathroom. Functionally, there were lots of wins. The Perrys said goodbye to baseboard heaters and hello to floor space gained from their removal. Refrigerated air replaced less-effective swamp coolers, and additional ducts now cool rooms previously too stuffy to enjoy. Another largely utilitarian change took place in the kitchen. Of the corner-bound kitchen sink Dick says, “There was only space for one person.” Two, and it was a traffic jam. The solution, it turned out, was to move the sink (and over-sink window) and add a second sink to the island. Migrating the oven stack outward to replace former cabinetry created more counter space, and an appliance garage replaced the lost storage. All kitchen and bathroom cabinetry was replaced with tailored wood cabinets, and granite replaced the old Formica counters. The very appropriately named Aphrodite granite (Dick promptly fell in love with it) was chosen for the master bathroom. “Our last visit to the stone yard, Dick wandered off again to the Aphrodite,” Susan recalls with a grin. “I said, ‘Janet, we’re going to have to get that.’” Iridescent blue flecks certainly make it

Above: Dick and Susan Perry in their updated new kitchen. Right: Though no major renovations were made to the spacious living room, the owners replaced their old batteryoperated blinds in the clerestory windows with wired electric blinds. No more ladders! 50

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Above: With aging in place firmly in mind, the master bathroom was significantly redesigned for mobility and storage. A tub and dry sauna were removed to increase the size of the nowcurbless walk-in (or wheel-in) shower, while granite and subtle tile patterns have modernized the space.

Right: A lovely pane of swirled glass separates the shower and the sink area and softens the hard materials.



Possibly the most dramatic transformation of the remodel was the conversion of the empty backyard into an inviting place for dining, relaxing, and enjoying the outdoors. In close proximity to banco seating, stone monoliths offer privacy and showcase one of three water features on the property by artist Joshua Gannon.

worthy of the name. New matching Hubbardton Forge light fixtures tie the dining room, living room, and kitchen together and bring the spaces forward in time. Indoor improvements well in hand, it was time to extend the living area a bit farther. An enormous rock garden now stands at the end of the optimized patio, while a water feature— one of three on the premises sculpted by artist Joshua Gannon—softly bubbles under the slatted portico. A curved banco offers extra seating space by the new outdoor fireplace, so kids and grandkids have room to spread out while Susan and Dick grill something yummy in their outdoor kitchen. The outdoor spaces are as inviting as those indoors, and all are beautifully modernized for this retired couple. They love the finished product, but when asked whether there’s another remodel in their future, the Perrys firmly shake their heads no. In remodeling only, and exactly, what they needed to, they are enjoying even more of the home they’ve loved for 15 years, but now with custom-tailored improvements. 52

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Right: There are now multiple seating areas outside, including one with a cozy fire pit for enjoying the landscaping and views in cooler weather.

resources Remodeler/Contractor Bain Cochran Construction

Landscaping Design: Judith Phillips, Design Oasis

Appliances Builders Source Appliance Gallery

Maintenance: Heads Up Landscaping

Cabinets Marc Coan Designs

Lighting Kiva Lighting Alchemy Lights

Custom Metal Work Going Custom Granite United Stoneworks

Tile Stonewood Flooring

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Su Cocina

by Amy Gross

Douglas Merriam

A huge, two-sided bar with seating now accommodates more visitors eager to sample Gruet’s wines. A drop panel and champagnecolored pendants make the space more cozy, as do family portraits and an art installation (on wall at right) that shows the winemakers’ move from France to New Mexico.

pouring with panache Gruet uncorks new and revamped tasting rooms

Beneath dramatic groin arches, the events room offers an unobstructed view of casks of Gruet pinot noir through glass walls. A large Southwestern-style table is appropriate for intimate dinner gatherings.


S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

Douglas Merriam


ou’ll find bubbles everywhere at Gruet Winery in Albuquerque—but not just in the casks and bottles where the vintner’s award-winning sparkling wines are produced. A recent renovation of Gruet’s main facility on Pan American Freeway is a subtle but joyful homage to the delightful effervescent refreshment that has put the French-turned-New Mexican winemakers on the oenological map. From the spherical drop chandelier and circular tiles marking the entryway to round holes punched into metal accent walls and clavos hammered into doors, Gruet’s revamped tasting room spaces are now as subtly bubbly and light as their wines. And they’ve been a long time coming.

“Our old space was intimate and served its purpose at the time,” says Regina Wilson, who has been Gruet’s tasting room manager for 12 years. “But I think the expansion at this time was perfect. It’s our 25th anniversary, and it’s sort of catapulting us to that next stage. The new spaces make such a statement.” Indeed they do. The comprehensive renovation, courtesy of veteran designers HVL Interiors of Santa Fe and Tanglewood Construction of Rio Rancho, includes a chic, stylish new tasting room, a dramatic events room, and a private VIP room, among other areas. “It’s a little bit French, a little bit modern industrial, and a little New Mexico,” says project leader Steffany Hollingsworth of

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“I think the expansion at this time was perfect. . . . The new spaces make such a statement.” —Regina Wilson Family—and history—are important at Gruet. Woven throughout the various spaces are family photographs and artistic reminders of the company’s trajectory. A 3-D string art composition by installation artist Sarah Voglewede connects the founding of the winery in Bethon, France, in 1952, to its relocation to New Mexico in 1984. Pieces of 56

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old winemaking equipment hold places of honor in cases throughout the facility. Ultimately, however, the goal of the renovation was to highlight the company’s stellar wines, from stills to sparklings, and to encourage visitors to unhurriedly sample a few in a modern, sexy space. Where the previous tasting room was dark and rather cramped, the new version is light, bright, and airy, with minimal décor and sleek, industrial furnishings and tables. Between the two-sided bar, the center tables, the wall bar, and the warehouse—a tiny part of which was used as the temporary tasting room during the renovation and which is still used, with massive vats as a backdrop, for tastings—there is ample space for oenophiles eager to taste, gather, and linger over conversation. For anything bigger, the rentable event room is jaw-dropping, its glass wall showcasing casks of pinot noir. A major redo of the landscaping and patio area by Surroundings is the next phase of the renovation and will offer even more seating. In addition to the Albuquerque renovation, Gruet also recently opened a gleaming new tasting room in downtown Santa Fe at the Hotel St. Francis. Likewise designed by HVL Interiors, the compact space is marked by

A tempting array of Gruet’s sparkling offerings.

Gabriella Marks

HVL. Because the Gruet family hails from France, the design initially played more to the European, but as Hollingsworth notes, “They were clear that Gruet is a New Mexico winery, so we ended up incorporating many Southwestern elements.” Elements like the dark wood twosided bar and wall-length back bar; the gorgeous, scrolled metal door at the entrance to the events room; and ranch-style furnishings and sliding barn doors in the VIP room.

Douglas Merriam

Douglas Merriam

HVL Interiors designed the cozy VIP room with rich textiles, mocha-colored walls, soft lighting, and New Mexico–flavored décor.

Douglas Merriam

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Above: Industrial modern seating and a clever wall-length bar offer plenty of space to enjoy a glass of bubbly in the Albuquerque tasting room.


8am - 5pm Saturdays

natural light, a long bar, and seating for a couple dozen dedicated samplers. The tasting room was put to the test in October, when a large (and rowdy) bunch of revelers inaugurated it during its grand opening. With spirits high, Gruet family members toasted their guests, to much enthusiastic raising of glasses in return. Ah, those tiny bubbles. Released from the bottle, they race upward, an irresistible call to celebration. With their new and renovated tasting spaces, Gruet is doing the same: elevating spirits while simultaneously raising the bar—quite literally—on design.

8am - 12pm

3700 Rutledge Road Ne : Albuquerque : NM 87109 505.938.3125

Light and bright, the Gruet tasting room at Hotel St. Francis in Santa Fe offers bar seating and standing space, bistro seating, and even mini “wall bars” for resting drinks over conversation.



Vida Buena

by Donna Schillinger

Taos, New Mexico the junction of ancient and eclectic

Taos Pueblo has been continuously lived in for over 1,000 years.


Debbie Lujan

mong New Mexico’s many gems, Taos is not to be missed. Between the millennium-old, continually inhabited Pueblo settlement and the nearby town only just incorporated in 1933, Taos offers remarkable hospitality, scenic beauty, and recreational and cultural encounters for history buffs, creative types, and adrenaline junkies.

for the amateur anthropologist

A UNESCO World Heritage Site and a National Historical Landmark, Taos Pueblo, an ancestral home of the Tiwa-speaking people who live there today, is a tiered adobe complex that rises to five stories. It is a remarkable structure exemplary of the pre-Hispanic Americas, and unique to our country in that its people have successfully retained much of their traditional way of life. Respectful visitors are welcome daily, with some exceptions for religious ceremonies and community events. Start here when you visit, and subsequent Taos history will start to fall into place. 58

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Coronado’s expedition made the first European contact with the Taos Native Americans in 1540; five centuries later, the town’s architecture as well as its occupants are a fascinating amalgam of Native American, Spanish, Hispanic, and eccentric Anglo-American that creates a distinctive vibe. Experience all of these cultural elements at the Millicent Rogers Museum, home to a large collection of prehistoric and modern ceramics, jewelry, and textiles, as well as Zuni and Hopi kachina dolls. More recent historical artifacts are on exhibit at the Kit Carson Home and Museum, which offers a summer lecture series and living history weekend replete with re-enactors.


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for the adventurer

A short drive northeast of Taos, options for the outdoorsy abound. The beautiful Taos Ski Valley is the main draw for skiers, snowshoers, and even inner tubers. Off the slopes you can trek with llamas with Wild Earth Llama Adventures—you lead, the Above: It’s a toss-up as to what’s more breathtaking: llama totes your gear and lunch—or take a hot air balloon ride through the dizzying standing on the bridge atop Rio Grande Gorge or gliding Rio Grande Gorge, which drops 800 feet from the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge. through it via hot air balloon.

for the artist


Taos is a little over an hour’s drive from Santa Fe and two hours from Albuquerque. If you fly into either city, you’ll want to rent a car or otherwise motor in to Taos, as you’ll need wheels to explore this place of unconventional allure. Taos Tourism,

Courtesy MarkeTaos

Right: A roaring fire and a cold margarita await at Doc Martin’s at the Historic Taos Inn.

time to relax

When it’s time to slow down, restaurant and lodging options abound in Taos. Try the varied breakfast menu all day at Michael’s Kitchen, a Taos locals’ favorite. Gutiz, a daytime only eatery, features a Latin-French menu. In the Taos Plaza, Lambert’s of Taos is an elegant spot for dinner. Cap the night with a killer margarita at Doc Martin’s at The Historic Taos Inn— 60

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conveniently equipped with 44 guest rooms should one margarita roll into one too many. Other lodging in Taos runs from the low-key B&B (Adobe & Pines Inn, Old Taos Guesthouse) to the luxurious resort (El Monte Sagrado). Close to the slopes are Bavarian Lodge and the new, 80-room alpine retreat The Blake, where you can package discounted lift tickets with your stay.

A mecca for creatives, Taos is home—or occasional haven—to many contemporary artists, no doubt drawn to the same architecture, landscape, and natural light that made it an artists’ colony; the Taos Society of Artists was founded here in 1915. Make the obligatory pilgrimage to the Mabel Dodge Luhan House where, even before the city of Taos existed, East Coast heiress Mabel Dodge and her Taos Indian husband Tony Luhan were offering retreat to the preeminent authors, artists, and thinkers of their time, among them Ansel Adams, Carl Jung, Willa Cather, D. H. Lawrence, and Georgia O’Keeffe. After a short stint as a hippie hangout in the 1970s under the ownership of actor Dennis Hopper, the house is today a B&B. New Mexico’s second oldest art museum, the Harwood Museum of Art boasts a permanent collection of more than 1,700 Native American, Hispanic, and contemporary works of art, as well as 17,000 photographs from the 19th century to the present. Additionally, the Nicolai Fechin House, the home of Russian-born, 20th-century portrait painter and wood carver, houses the Taos Art Museum. For the kind of art you can take home, there are dozens of galleries to browse.

Courtesy MarkeTaos

Courtesy Wild Earth Llama

Below: Trek into the Gorge with a team of friendly, gear-carrying llamas for a scenic, guided excursion you’ll remember for years to come.

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Vida Buena

by Amanda Jackson

Eduardo Rubiano

At Santa Fe Thrive, spin class participants work at their own pace, enjoy music, and engage in an intense cycling session—all in a darkened, nightclub-style room.

spinning into control spend the winter cycling inside so you can enjoy the spring outdoors


ndoor cycling, colloquially referred to as spinning, has become a popular way to lose weight, increase fitness, and prepare for outdoor adventures. This engaging, low-impact sport is perfect for all ages. Harvard Health Publications Harvard Health Letter from September 2016 highlights five significant health benefits of cycling: it’s easy on the joints; pushing pedals provides an aerobic workout; it builds muscle; it builds bone; and it helps with other everyday activities (including balance, endurance, and stair climbing). One of the advantages to spinning is that it can be enjoyed in any season. While there is still snow on the ground, now is the perfect time to invest in a pair of cycling shorts (or pants!) and try a cycling class or two, perhaps from one of these two fantastic local studios. Santa Fe Thrive ( prides itself on being the only gym in Santa Fe to specialize in hot yoga and indoor cycling classes. Thrive’s cycling classes are truly one of a kind: A disco ball hangs from the center of the room, and specialty 62

S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

mood lighting creates a dance-like atmosphere, complete with a professional-grade sound system. With only 20 bikes and highly trained instructors, classes fill up fast, especially with options like Hip House Cycle, PowerThrive, and $5 community cycle. Instructors encourage beginners and challenge advanced cyclists, and offer plenty of options for students to go at their own pace. “The way we teach cycling is intentionally designed to make everyone feel capable, empowered, and inspired,” says Thrive owner Mira Rubiano. “We pedal to the beat of the music in a dark, nightclub-style room. Everyone is in control of their own resistance, and thus in control of their level of effort, but because we’re all on beat together, it becomes a collective, noncompetitive experience.” In Albuquerque, P2M Cycling Studio ( is geared (pun intended) toward those who are slightly more advanced cyclists, or have specific goals in mind for training, riding, and racing. P2M offers individual classes such

Indoor cycling offers numerous health benefits and provides an exciting, low-impact, and heart-healthy way to get fit this winter. as Winter Cadence Speed and Efficiency, and Get Faster on Hills, as well as series like the Q.T.S. Power & Strength Cycling Program and Cyclocross Crush Series. Classes are held on students’ own personal bikes, and all are designed to improve every level of cyclist and help those more advanced reach their peak potential. P2M also offers pedal stoke analysis, performance testing, and bike fitting. If those options don’t fit your goals, design a custom program with one of the studio’s highly knowledgeable instructors. “I’ve been going to P2M for over four years and love the workouts,” says Mike Godwin, owner of Ernest Thompson Furniture. “More than a spin class, P2M is different in that you’re using your own bike. The computers compensate for different fitness levels, so I could be riding next to Lance Armstrong but still have the same perceived effort he’s experiencing.” Whether you are a novice or are accustomed to the bike, indoor cycling offers numerous benefits and provides an exciting, low-impact, and heart-healthy way to get fit this winter. Come spring, you’ll be itching— and physically prepared—to jump on a road or mountain bike and explore Northern New Mexico’s scenic trails and pathways.

Andy Drescher

At P2M Cycling Studio in Albuquerque, cyclists plug in to high-tech systems to track their progress and work toward new goals on their own bikes.

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Benny Vigil’s 1972 Buick Riviera with Mural in Rear Window, 2015

¡Órale! Lowrider: Custom Made in New Mexico, by Don J. Usner, The Museum of New Mexico Press, hardcover, $40


ew things are as iconic to Northern New Mexico as red and green chile, adobe Pueblo architecture, and lowriders. In his stunning new coffee table book ¡Órale! Lowrider: Custom Made in New Mexico, author Don J. Usner provides thoughtful insight, detailed history, and snippets of conversations with the interesting characters behind these distinctive vehicles, and further explores the influence of the lowrider P andRitsI N T

cultural tradition. The book is published in conjunction with the New Mexico Museum of Art’s exhibition Con Cariño: Artists Inspired by Lowriders, and the New Mexico History Museum’s Lowriders, Hoppers, and Hot Rods: Car Culture of Northern New Mexico exhibit, on view until March 5. Filled with 120 striking images in color and black and white, this book is sure to bring joy to car enthusiasts and photography lovers alike. From detailed shots of hubcaps, hoods, and interiors to rich black and white portraits of the cars and their owners, the gorgeous images give a glimpse into the cultural and community pride of those immersed in lowriding. Curated by Daniel Kosharek, photo curator at the New Mexico History Museum, and Katherine Ware, curator of photography at the New Mexico Museum of Art (who also contributed an interview with lowrider artist Meridel Rubenstein to the book), the selected photographs span 40 years and showcase four main types of vehicles: bombs (large, rotund American cars circa 1930–1955); originals (old cars restored to original condition); hoppers (cars with hydraulic lifters that allow them to bounce and jump); and hot rods (classic American cars with modified engines). So what exactly is a lowrider? Usner defers to the renowned Fred Rael: “If it isn’t low, doesn’t have small-spoke rims, whitewall tires, and a nice paint job, it isn’t a lowrider.” The term also refers to the car enthusiast; thus, Rael himself is a lowrider. This book highlights the lowrider as a OU T LofIart NinEits own right, while delving work

Bob Eckert

a new book for those who take pride in their ride

into the who, the what, and the why behind it all. As a companion piece to the two lowrider exhibits, ¡Órale! Lowrider is deeply satisfying, especially for those who truly love cars. “I’m convinced there are two kinds of people in the world—those who drive for the purpose of getting from point A to point B . . . and people like me who drive cars to, well, drive cars,” explains Kosharek. “This exhibit is about the latter: people who express themselves through pride in their ride.”—Amanda Jackson

Blue Bel Air at Julian’s Barbers Shop, Pojoaque, 2012


5 0 5 . 9 1 8 . 8 476 CO N S U LT 64

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Bob Eckert


continued from page 16


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Albuquerque, NM

Lou Novick

“People were really inspired as to how they would use this space; they really reacted personally to it,” he says. “People kept saying: ‘Oh, I would have a cocktail down there. I would come down here and read. Or, this could be a hookah room.” Matt chuckles delightedly. “Actually I got that one a lot!” On a trip to Morocco last year, Matt and Heather purchased the cactus fiber rug, which, along with an abstract painting by Madrid artist Lori Swartz, anchored the design. “Interestingly it had some Native and Navajo shapes to it, and that was really the foundation of the ‘old Mexico to New Mexico,’ going back to North Africa,” Matt explains. “I really jumped out of those two for color and scale of patterns.” Nearly every inch of the wall space was adorned with artwork that had special meaning to the designer and his wife, from the monolithic outdoor sculpture by local artist Jarrett West, to paintings of the Frenches’ pets by J. Penry, an old friend from Brooklyn, to pieces by Alabama folk artists Mose T. and Howard Finster. Colorful textiles—pillows and banco cushions—added to the hodgepodge of color, and yet, the room still managed to inspire relaxation, peace, and a sense of wanting to hang out—for a good long time. “I was really happy that I was able to pull off something so bold and colorful and graphic, yet everybody said it was so calm in there,” Matt says. “That was the real trick—to play with a pattern and a bowl of colors, and create a space that didn’t feel too chaotic. That’s what I like the most about how it came out.”—Amy Gross French & French Interiors



by Steve Thomas

call me afflicted


his winter is the first in many that I haven’t had a major renovation project underway. Our current home, Sea Cove Cottage, which I’ve written about in this column, is at last complete. My wife, Evy, and I are almost done downsizing. We wanted to live in one small, well-designed, and perfectly renovated house. We just have to downsize our stuff, a lot of which is in storage up the road. So my spare time is suddenly truly “spare,” and my free time is actually “free.” What a concept! My beloved tools lie quietly on their shelves in my storeroom and work trailer, their power cords coiled up like the tails of sleeping cats. All of this inactivity had me thinking for several weeks that I might actually be cured of “Renovator’s Disease”—the inability to stop fixing up your house long after it makes economic sense to do so—and I was pretty pleased with myself. Then some older friends invited us over to their 1800s-built home for a drink. Their house is lovely and quirky, but suffers from some benign neglect. The plumbing and electrical need upgrading or replacement; the furnace failed last year and hasn’t been replaced; and the kitchen


S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

and bathrooms are all nearing the end of their service life. The yard and garden, too, could use a vigorous application of chainsaw and spade. But the house has that funky, old-pair-of-jeans comfort, and the haphazard arrangement of rooms added on over time has an organically pleasing flow. As Evy and I strolled through the home, the fire in the fireplace crackled, and the ancient chimney (another warning light!) let just enough smoke into the room to give it atmosphere. The early evening sunlight slanted through the windows and made the whitecaps sparkle out in the distant harbor. The tall grass in the fields had turned a mellow gold, before the first snow. And then our host said, “I suppose you’d want to tear it down.” “No, no, never!” I blurted out. “I’d renovate it! Oh, I might redo the kitchen and baths, and do some clearing out in the yard, but it’s a wonderful house!” And then it struck me what was going on. Our friends have owned this home for decades and they love it dearly. But they’re getting on in years and are preparing to turn the house over to its next set of stewards. Their daughter lives out West, and there’s no one else in the family to take it over. I don’t think it was premeditated, but were they testing me? Would I tear it down? Never. That’s what they wanted to find out. It is said that houses find people rather than the other way around. That sounds a bit “woo-woo,” but after all these years of working on old houses I’m thinking it might be true. What happened that evening was totally unexpected and the magic of it is still with me. It was as if the house itself was looking for its next caretaker—someone blissfully, unapologetically, afflicted with Renovator’s Disease. Steve Thomas is a home renovation expert and the former host of This Old House and Renovation Nation.

What happened that evening was totally unexpected, and the magic of it is still with me. It was as if the house itself was looking for its next caretaker.

Even as he brings one home remodeling project to a close, serial renovator Steve Thomas usually has his eye—at least subconsciously—on another. Can’t let that tool collection get rusty.

Douglas Merriam

Steve Thomas

Douglas Merriam

Renovator’s Disease affects the seriously home-inspired

on the market

on the market

ranch living

Antoine Predock

in New Mexico

This stunning ranch-style adobe home delivers the best of New Mexico style. From the tin roof to the wraparound porch and plantation shutters, this home exudes Southern charm. Completely remodeled and updated throughout, the five-bedroom, three-bath, 5,200-square-foot home flaunts a gourmet kitchen with a Sub-Zero refrigerator and sixburner Sub-Zero cooktop. An office, a bonus room, and a large storage room are also part of the deal. Exquisite, stylish finishes throughout the home add an extra touch of elegance. The extra large, park-like backyard comes with a John Deere riding mower and includes a pool, patios, and a play area, as well as an area for sitting, sunning, and perhaps sipping a cocktail. List price: $995,000, Jeannine DiLorenco, Keller Williams Realty, 505-235-5840,


Located in Sandia Heights North, this architectural masterpiece designed by internationally known architect Antoine Predock is truly one of a kind. Sited on 2.3 acres, with numerous hiking trails mere steps from the front door, the home allows for quiet privacy even as it captures stunning views of the Sandia Mountains. Indoors, the beautiful kitchen is appointed for the home chef and wine lover, with granite countertops, a large island, and top of the line appliances, including a Miele dishwasher, a six-burner Wolf stove and oven, a Sub-Zero built-in refrigerator, and an 85-bottle Thermador built-in wine cabinet. This four-bedroom, four-bath, 4,746-square-foot residence is complete with brick floors on the main level and hardwood floors on the second. Entertaining is a breeze thanks to an outdoor patio and kitchen, complemented by a crystal clear Gunite pool. List price: $1.3 million, Marsha Adams, Sotheby’s International Realty, 505-988-2533,

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Just Winging Through

Mark L. Watson

by Tom Smylie

my little

chickadee nature’s adorable acrobat


Mark L. Watson

f you’re not immediately able to identify one by sight, a chickadee will gladly help you out by constantly repeating its name: chick-a-dee-dee. Tiny, plump, and adorable, chickadees are gray and white birds with a black crown and throat. They’re fearless and friendly, and easy to spot flitting about, swinging and hanging upside down on tree trunks and branches in search of insects. In New Mexico we have three species of chickadees: the mountain, Mexican, and black-capped—the mountain chickadee being the most common and abundant of the three species as well as the most distinctive, with a white streak above each eye. Walking in the conifer mountain forests, you’ll often hear the chickadee’s light whisper call (fee-bee, fee-bee) as he goes about the trees. Chickadees nest in tree cavities, which they’ll line with animal fur or moss in early summer above 7,500 feet in preparation for laying eggs. They’re very protective Always moving and feeding, of their cavity nest; females are chickadees are seen yearround in New Mexico. known to emit a snake-like A prominent eye stripe hiss to keep squirrels away. Chickadees will boldly attack distinguishes the mountain chickadee (above) from the larger woodpeckers in order black-capped (top). to use their holes for nesting. They will also use nesting boxes when placed on trees in their mountain habitats. In the winter, chickadees come down to lower elevations in search of food. Although insects are a large part of their diet, they will also eat seeds and will come to feeders. These friendly and bold little birds will sometimes even feed on seed from your outstretched hand. Though small in size, chickadees are big in personality, enlivening our surroundings with their acrobatic skills and endearing, familiar presence.

Tom Smylie, from Edgewood, New Mexico, is a retired wildlife biologist affiliated with the World Center for Birds of Prey. 68

S U C A S A W I N T E R 2017

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Albuquerque Home & Garden Show........................................68 Albuquerque Home Remodeling & Lifestyle Show..............72 Bright Ideas dba The Lamp Shop..............................................61 Budget Blinds...................................................................................63 Building Materials Distributors/Marvin Windows..............23 California Closets............................................................................55 Custom Homes by Marie...............................inside front cover Diamond Tail Ranch........................................................................9 Diego Handcrafted Homes..........................................................39 ECOTerra LLC...............................................................................64 Ethan Allen Home Furnishings...................................................53 Fabu-WALL-ous Solutions..........................................................61 Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery...........................67 First Mortgage Company..............................................................10 General Electric..................................................................................7 Greater Albuquerque Association of Realtors.....................69 Heads Up Landscaping..................................................................65 Hermanson Construction, Inc....................................................12 Home Construction Doctor, LLC.............................................71 Jeebs & ZuZu....................................................................................38 Homes by Joe Boyden....................................................................47 Joseph Custom Homes..................................................................55 Keller Williams Realty...................................................................29 Kirtland Federal Credit Union...................................................17 La Puerta Originals.........................................................................39 Las Ventanas Homes........................................................................3 Lee-Sure Pools, Inc.........................................................................38 Mariposa....................................................................................2 Mountain West Sales......................................................................14 New Mexico Home Remodeling & Landscape Show..........63 New Mexico Gas Company..........................................................69 Osuna Nursery.................................................................................69 Palo Duro Homes............................................................................59 Panorama Homes.............................................................back cover Pella Window & Door........................................................................1 Piñon Window and Door, Inc......................................................31 Quality Stone & Marble LLC.......................................................71 Renaissance Man Construction...................................................71 Riccobene........................................................................................65 Rocky Mountain Stone..................................................................47 Sandia Area Federal Credit Union.............................................13 Sierra Pacific Windows..................................................................15 Slide-a-Shelf...................................................................................71 Southwest Chocolate & Coffee Fest.........................................68 Statements in Tile/Lighting/Kitchens/Flooring....................53 Stonewood Flooring, LLC............................................................57 Strahle Tile & Granite...................................................................69 Sukhmani Home..............................................................................59 TC Building & Realty Inc..............................................................25 Tierra Concepts...............................................................................19 U.S. Eagle...............................................................inside back cover Villanueva Granite, Inc.................................................................70 Western Building Supply............................................................. 18 Wholesale Timber & Viga.............................................................57 Woods Design Builders..............................................................4–5 Xfinity / Comcast...............................................................................11

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what’s happening?

January through March ROALD DAHL’S MATILDA—THE MUSICAL January 12–15 Popejoy Hall at UNM, ABQ $40–$85 Based on the novel by Roald Dahl, Matilda is the story of a young girl who takes a stand to change her destiny. TIME Magazine’s #1 show of the year and winner of 50 international awards, including four Tony Awards, comes to Albuquerque for one weekend only. SOUPER BOWL January 28, 11 am–2 pm 5840 Office Blvd NE, ABQ $45 at the door The Roadrunner Food Bank of New Mexico hosts the annual Souper Bowl the weekend before the NFL’s big game. A fundraiser for the food bank (with cookbooks available for purchase), this soup and dessert sampling event features more than 40 local restaurants and chefs, live music, and prizes. TAOS WINTER WINE FESTIVAL February 1–5, times vary Taos Ski Valley, Taos, various locations

Individual events vary; Grand and Reserve Tasting, $75 Head to the beautiful Taos Ski Valley to enjoy a 21 and older event with great food and wine, seminars, tastings, and wine dinners. All tickets are electronic and must be purchased in advance. RUSSIAN NATIONAL BALLET—CINDERELLA February 2, 7:30 pm Popejoy Hall at UNM, ABQ $20–$65 The Russian National Ballet brings classical Russian ballet to the Popejoy stage for one night only. With choreography by Rostislav Zakharov and score by Sergei Prokofiev, this ballet captures the delight, fantasy, and drama of the Cinderella story. FRIENDS AND LOVERS BALLOON RALLY February 11–12, 7 am Balloon Fiesta Parkway, ABQ Free A close-knit group of 135+ local balloon pilots will launch with the sunrise on the mornings of the 11th and 12th. Bring your friends, family, and some coffee or hot chocolate to witness this breathtaking ascension. THE ALBUQUERQUE HOME REMODELING & LIFESTYLE SHOW February 25–26, times vary Expo New Mexico, Lujan Building, ABQ $7 general admission; free for ages 11 and under Over 150 vendors will be available to chat and discuss

ideas for your home renovation, remodel, or other home improvement project. NATIONAL FIERY FOODS AND BARBECUE SHOW March 3–5, times vary Sandia Resort & Casino, ABQ $5–$15, free for ages 6 and under The 29th annual National Fiery Foods and Barbecue Show allows visitors to satisfy their cravings for both flavor and spice. Sample hot BBQ, blazing salsas, “sweet heat” desserts, and everything in between. RIO GRANDE ARTS & CRAFTS FESTIVAL March 10–12, times vary Expo New Mexico, Lujan Building, ABQ One day pass, $7; festival pass, $10; $1 off coupon available for parking The 29th annual Spring Show will host more than 185 artists and craftsmen from all over the country. Marking the state’s first major art event for the year, this juried indoor festival showcases fine arts and crafts as well as music, artist demos, and other family-friendly fun. PIANO BATTLE March 24, 8 pm Popejoy Hall at UNM, ABQ - $20–$49 The brainchild of two internationally accomplished pianists, Piano Battle is a (friendly!) head-to-head duel between Andreas Kern and Paul Cibis. Performing on twin grand pianos, the artists offer their take on Chopin, Liszt, and Debussy, while also improvising from audience requests. At the end of the night, the audience crowns a winner.

Remodeling? Landscaping? Upgrading Your Lifestyle? We’ve Got It All! THE


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OUR NEXT SHOW February 25-26, 2017 EXPO NM

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Su Casa North Winter 2017 | Digital Edition  
Su Casa North Winter 2017 | Digital Edition