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Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

1 • All properties can be found at

Evan R. Blish, Broker 575-776-8106

Greg Jaramillo, Associate Broker • (575) 770-1270 Jolie Jones, Qualifying Broker • (575) 741-0603 Website: E-mail:

Canon FoothiLLs

Located minutes from Taos Plaza, this home features remarkable views in a modern design, located in Canon Heights. This very tasteful and extremely well maintained home stands out above the rest. 3 bedroom, 3.5 bath with deluxe master suite and separate floor plan features the ultimate in gourmet kitchens, including 6 burner range and grill. Open floor plan features breakfast area overlooking Taos Mountain and attached family room/den. Large temperature and humidity controlled wine cellar and attached heated 3 car garage. Privacy and security! MLs # 93646 $1,095,000

taos Country CLub

Des Montes

Magnificent expansive home in primo condition overlooking the 16th fairway & Taos Mountain. Built & designed by Don Godsoe, exquisitely maintained, this home consists of 3 bedrooms & 4 baths, also a home office and family/entertainment room. Open floor plan with high ceilings & the highest attention to detail. Built in Pueblo Revival "style" with coved ceilings. Elegant & stylish, yet totally comfortable. Lots of room for entertaining & relaxing. Great outside patio with kiva. Landscaping all on drip. Tee it up. MLs #93241 $890,000

Remarkable 3/3 adobe home in Des Montes on 3 acres. Vishu Magee designed, G3 constructed. Energy efficient, green home, perfect for the environmentally sensitive. Acoustically perfect living room w/ 20' ceilings. Indoor lap pool. Vigas, split cedar latillas, coved ceilings. Solar, photo voltaic. Travertine marble floors. Spectacular stone and wood work throughout. Cozy outside patio spaces & gazebo. Peace and solitude. Expansive creative environment. Cool! MLs #89352 $1,353,400

taos ski vaLLey

Limited Time Offer for this amazing contemporary SKI-IN/ SKI-OUT lodge with state of the art systems. Luxury 3BR/4BA chalet is located at the base of Lift 4 (Kachina Chair) in Taos Ski Valley. Being offered turn-key with furnishings. Interior Design Magazine finalist for “Best New Boutique Hotel-2009” MLs 93769 $750,000

JOLIE JONES qualifying broker



letter from the editor Winter greetings!


Not only are the kitchens and bathrooms some of the most intricately designed spaces in homes, they are also the most tightly sealed. After all, we purposefully bring water into these rooms, so we must be able to control the moisture to avoid damage – all the while looking good! In this issue of Enchanted Homes, we take an expansive view of kitchens and bathrooms from many angles: design, structure, accessories and more. Most of us yearn to remodel these rooms in our homes; now may be the time to turn dreams into reality.

Photo by Tina Larkin

On Page 28, our featured home is a Des Montes adobe designed by Taos architect Bill Hoffman. A well-appointed kitchen and expansive bathroom anchor a relaxed and subtle lifetyle. Regular contributor Vishu Magee takes us on a closer look of what a bathroom is really about, beginning on Page 46. And, for the “accessorizor” in all of us, on Page 22, Enchanted Homes surveys local shops for ideas for the chef and host in all of us.

Wanda Lucero, Agent 211 Kit Carson Road 575-737-5433

Turn to Page 52 and you’ll find a profile of Red Arrow Emporium and how an important part of their business is designing and furnishing kitchens and bathrooms. Lisa Braselle, of Granite Concepts, goes Q&A to discuss the latest in countertops on Page 34, and woodworker-sculptor Dean Pulver chats about his cabinet stylings on Page 56. And, of course, we have our regular features: Realtor Harvey Blaustein’s “Market Share” column; Nine Questions posed to Christine Vargas, of Vargas Tile; Ted Dimond on the value of a mortgage payment plan; and, a profile on associate broker Rick Reeves at Taos Properties. I hope you enjoy thumbing through this issue of Enchanted Homes and dreaming about what you can do to make your kitchen and bathroom the best they can be.


Julie Osmanski, Editor Enchanted Homes

Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

3 • All properties can be found at




The best source for home financing in New Mexico… for purchases, refinance, land or construction

Ted Dimond

Vanessa Dimond

Donna Nelson

Larissa Schaetz • 575.758.5566 800.913.5306 524 Paseo del Pueblo Sur, Suite H, Taos, New Mexico NMLS# 190187

Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

4 • All properties can be found at

Contact us at:

575-758-5400 of Taos

Each Office Independently Owned & Operated

723 Paseo del Pueblo Sur Taos, New Mexico 87571

We feature all Taos County MLS listings on our website:


Call linda

575 770-2786



GREAT LOCATION IN CANON HEIGHTS, 2 bedrooms 2.5 bath adobe home with detached 2 car garage on 2 acres overlooking the city. Apprx 2765 sq ft, interior was just painted. Mountain, foothill, sunrise and sunset views from extensive flagstone patio. MLS 93450 Asking $469,000

SPECTACULAR MOUNTAIN VIEWS in all directions. 3 bedroom, 2 bath home with 2196 sq ft, Saltillo tile floors, kiva fireplace, vigas in the ceiling. Plus a large studio/guest house with apprx 936 sq ft, has 1 bedroom and 1 bath. Lots of garden areas with courtyards for enjoying the foothill, mountain, sunrise and sunset views. MLS 92666 Asking $549,000

GREAT LOCATION IN TOWN with 2042 sq feet on 1 acre. Beautiful setting with many trees and great mountain views.  2 bd, 2ba with cozy dining room, fp in living room, and sun room for passive solar heat gain and all your geraniums.  Large master suite is upstairs, apprx 700 sq feet with stunning mountain views. MLS 94387 Asking $259,900.




FABULOUS LOCATION AT QUAIL RIDGE Located 15 minutes to town and 20 minutes to Taos Ski area. 1 bedroom 2 baths with large great room. Located on 2nd floor with good mountain views, fire place in living room. Bank owned property. MLS 94384 Asking $107,900.

BEST VIEW IN TAOS COUNTY. Watch the seasons from the new spacious redwood deck surrounded by lush green landscaping. Insulated garage, concrete driveway, fencing, nat'l gas pipeline/ new furnace. AC, new HW heater. Kitchen has new range, granite counters and cabinets. New utility room cabinets & entertainment center. New window glass, light fixtures, New paint inside and out. On paved plowed rd. MLS 94187 Asking $229,000

GREAT VALUE 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, apprx 1070 sq ft with tile floors, viga ceilings and a kiva fireplace. Open floorplan, large fenced yard with mountain and foothill views. Close to schools, medical facilities, consumer services and recreation. MLS 93795  ASkING $159,500




SUPER CLEAN, well maintained 3 BD 1BA home with fenced back yard and mountain views. Convenient location in town, close to schools, medical facilities. Office space off master bedroom has 220 volt outlet. Studio/ workshop has electric, heating, and swamp cooler. New furnace in 2012, newer washer and dryer. New carpet in summer 2013. MLS 94343 Asking $170,000

LARGE 3 BEDROOM 2 bath home on 1 acre. Well maintained and in move-in condition. Oversized 2 car garage, with workshop space. Low maintenance, 1 acre with 360 degree views in all directions. Large covered portal for outdoor living space. MLS# 92335 Asking $180,000.

3 BEDROOM 2 BATH with 1798 sq ft on 3/4 acre. Large kitchen with lots of counter space, seperate dinging area, with fireplace in living room. Nicely landscaped courtyard in the front yard and back yard. Stunning mountain views. MLS 94467 ASkING $161,900




CUTE AND COzY CABIN with fantastic views. Lots of windows so the cabin is light and bright with apprx 900 sq ft with 2 bedrooms and l bath, large deck for bbqing, viewing the snow capped Jicarita mountains, or the elk herd in the meadow. MLS 92700 Asking $135,000

3 bd, 2 ba with an addition that could be a studio or office. 2000 sq ft, wtih forced air heating, covered porch for viewing the mountains. Natural gas with well and approved septic system. Located in town close to schools, employment, medical facilities, and recreation.  Mountain views and large fenced yard with detached 2 car carport. Manufactured home on permanent foundation. MLS 91470   Asking $175,000

3 BEDROOM 2.5 BATHS with elegant front entry, gourmet kitchen, sunken intimate living room with stone fireplace, 3067 sq feet on .75 acres. Lots of deck space with 1 car garage. Close to golfing, skiing, fishing, hiking and biking. MLS 93529 Asking $299,900

Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

5 • All properties can be found at


Because we know you want to live here.



Find all the Taos MLS real estate listings with one click

The best source for home financing in New Mexico… for purchases, refinance, land or construction Ted Dimond

Vanessa Dimond

Donna Nelson

Powered by Dreamcatcher Real Estate Company

Larissa Schaetz • 575.758.5566 800.913.5306 524 Paseo del Pueblo Sur, Suite H, Taos, New Mexico NMLS# 190187

Photo by Seth Bullington

It’s A Great Time To Purchase! Peoples is here to help turn your home buying dreams into reality We offer a wide variety of loan products to save you time and money: • Jumbo Loans • Construction Loans • Loans for Second Homes and Investment Properties • Conventional Loans • Portfolio Loans

• VA Loans • FHA Loans • Hero Program • First Time Homebuyer Programs • Condominiums

Our commitment to superior Guest service means your loan closes quicker!

Contact Tina Montoya or Adam Consiglio today! 575.737.3799 NMLS # 779942

NMLS # 455329 Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

Member FDIC

6 • All properties can be found at

There is a Difference…


#1 Boutique Real Estate Co. in Taos



caSa De LUZ

ic n at ctio m u a dr red e c i pr

A Historic Gentleman’s Ranch TAOS, NEW MEXICO

The only Taos area ranch on the market. 2300 spectacular acres with owner’s custom home, 2 guesthomes, vintage log cabin, horse facilities & more. MLS #91124 double-d-ranch/

159 PRiSTine acReS

Radiant space of light and movement from every perspective in this custom designed 3 bed/2.5 bath home plus guesthouse, by renowned architect Bill Hoffman with inspiring mountain views from every room. Orchard, gardens & over 100 trees on secluded 3.87 verdant acres, only minutes to Taos Plaza. MLS #93330 $2,695,000

This gem of contemporary architecture embodies both artistic vision and contemporary design. This “Modern Adobe” sits on 3 park-like acres in the heart of Taos, adjacent to Pueblo lands. MLS #93101 $1,497,000 modern-art

Scenic GeTaway

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Year-round stream, abundance of wildlife, majestic stands of Aspen & quiet solitude, located in the beautiful Amalia valley near Valle Vidal National Forest Area. MLS #92187

Meticulously remodeled century old adobe on 2 acres. Appointments in this 4 bed/4 bath home represent authentic New Mexican style, with local craftsman talent in every detail along with aweinspiring balcony panoramas. $649,900 MLS #91602

Located on the sunny side of Taos Canyon , this 2bed/1bath home has been empty for a couple of years, as part of an estate. The family is very motivated and this property now presents a great value and opportunity. Expansive, often Elk filled, views  from the spacious living room.  MLS #94450 $169,700




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Lovely & Comfortable 3,800 sq.ft. 3 bed/3 bath adobe home with splendid touches by ceramic artist in residence. Secluded 5 acres with solid 2,400 sq.ft. workshop. Solar powerback-up and cistern augment the property’s on-grid electric & well. MLS #93821 $439,000

A Taos original adobe which has evolved over 2 family generations. The 1900 sq ft 3 bed/2bath home offers not only one of the best in-town locations, but also a lot of potential. Remodel or update into your dream home. MLS #94315

AMAZING views of Taos Mountains and the Hondo Valley!! There is already a pond dug and some landscaping in place, plus a commercial size well. Seller is including a very livable RV and lots of building materials. One of a kind and beautiful!! MLS #94377 $129,000



o. 575.758.3606 c. 575.770.1116  e. Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

Pavel Lukeš


Licensed Realtor Since 1972

7 • All properties can be found at

welcome | enchanted homes Owner Robin Martin


Publisher Chris Baker Editor Joan Livingston Managing Editor/ Creative Director Julie Osmanski Advertising Manager Chris Wood Sales Manager Chad Lewis Graphic Design Sally Brooks Jennifer Taphorn Photography Tina Larkin Vishu Magee


in this issue 3

Enchanted Homes Feb./March 2014, Vol. XCV

From the Editor

44 Harvey Blaustein: Advice to buyers

18 9 Questions: Christine Vargas, co-owner of Vargas Tile

45 Inside Out: Creative elements and furnishings for your home

20 Realtor Profile: Rick Reeves, Taos Properties

46 Building Green: Time to take a bath

22 Five useful things that add charm to the kitchen 24 Here & There: Real Estate in Taos vs. Crested Butte, CO 26 Ted Dimond: Is a biweekly mortgage payment plan worth it? 28 A desirable dwelling: A high mesa compound offers a mix of comfort and luxury 34 A conversation with Lisa Braselle of Granite Concepts

Contributing Writers Harvey Blaustein Andy Dennison Ted Dimond Teresa Dovalpage Vishu Magee Yvonne Pesquera

52 Red Arrow Emporium: Transforming homes ‘from drab to fab’ 54 Enchanted Circle Area Map 56 Merging sculpture with cabinetry: Woodworker Dean Pulver seeks art that is functional 58 Taos County Community Profile 60 Taos Ski Valley Community Profile 61 Red River Community Profile 62 Angel Fire Community Profile

Cover Art By Art West "Evening Shadows on a Round Taos House” 30" x 40" oils, original sold Prints available at Art West Studio in Santa Fe 112 W. San Francisco Street, Suite 109 Email: Phone: 505.629.9438 Web:



Official Relocation Guide for the Taos County Chamber of Commerce, Angel Fire Chamber of Commerce and Red River Chamber of Commerce

Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

226 Albright St., Taos, NM 87571 575.758.2241 •

10 • All properties can be found at

Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

11 • All properties can be found at


Your Taos Ski Valley Specialist! : Keith Dowell, Qualifying Broker : Phone: (575) 776.0600 : #5 Ernie Blake Road, Taos Ski Valley, NM 87525

Land in Taos Ski Valley!


TAOS SKI VALLEY’S PREMIER SKI-IN / SKI-OUT CONDOMINIUMS. Luxurious one, two, or three bedroom units available. Turn-key condominiums with great rental history and on-site management. Property amenities include spa, exercise room, hot tub, dry sauna, boot lockers with dryers, owner storage, underground parking, game room, and cafe, bar, and restaurant. Solid HOA with healthy capital reserve. Located at the base of the lifts. MLS# 92692 ......Unit 201 ............. $300,000 .... 1BR / 1BA MLS# 92811 ......Unit 406/407 ..... $725,000 .... 3BR / 3BA MLS# 92812 ......Unit 409/410 ..... $550,000 .... 2BR / 2BA MLS# 93774 ......Unit 212 ............. $541,000 .... 2BR / 2BA


Elegant ski-in/ski-out condominiums, steps from the slopes. Granite counter tops, stone tile floors, travertine tiles in bath, gas log fireplaces. First class amenities include ski-valet, hot tub/sauna, locker/exercise and massage room, restaurant, bar, and package/convenience/deli store. On site management company with proven record and aggressive promotion make these condos convenient and a great investment. MLS# 89887 ........Unit 309 ....... $349,000 ......... 2BR / 2BA MLS# 92781 ........Unit 406 ....... $489,000 ......... 3BR / 3BA


Stunning views. Great building envelope. Compare to Pioneers Glade; twice the SUNLIGHT and HALF the price. Great location. Short walk or drive to skiing. All utilities at property line. MLS# 90054 ............................. SOLD



Upscale SKI IN - SKI OUT Condominium in TAOS SKI VALLEY. Featuring a Modern but Rustic Decor stimulated with OUTSTANDING VIEWS. This unit features a living/bedroom combination and an additional separate bedroom. LOW HOA DUES that Includes a hot tub, parking and shuttle. Established Rental Program already in place . Check out prices of other ski in-ski out condo’s. Enjoy Cool Mountain Summers! MLS# 93547 ........Chamonix #3........ $179,900 ....2BR/2BA

Upscale condominium’s in the heart of Taos Ski Valley. Perfectly positioned to benefit future development in the core of TSV. Awesome HOA package with affordable dues. Includes hot tub room, high-speed internet, owner’s locker, laundry facilities, snow removal and ALL UTILITIES!! Proven, on-site management and good rental history. Available units have good variety and price range. All units feature scenic balconies with slopeside views. MLS# 94640.........Unit 102 ........$199,000 ...............1BR/1BA MLS# 92472.........Unit 204 ........$181,000 .............. 1BR / 1BA MLS# 94641.........Unit 301 ........$229,000 ...............2BR/2BA


Modern and well built. Designed by architect Rich Wilson. Open great room with high vaulted, aspen tongue and groove ceiling. Efficient radiant heat, and antique round oak wood stove. Jacuzzi tub in guest bathroom. Stream runs through lot. Open space next door. Two covered decks and patio enhance outstanding scenery. Exceptional roof snowmelt system. MLS# 92486 .. $649,000 Reduced to $549,000.... 2BR / 2BA Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

One-of-a-kind, unbelievable residence is located in the foot hills of the Rockies. This exceptional home sits on a 20-acre lot. Another 20-acre parcel is available making the price $3,650,000. You will be impressed with the quality and craftsmanship of the home. The scenery and views are STUNNING. The outdoor furnishings includes the pool, sauna and hot tub. This home is a true gem in a great location. MLS# 93505........................ $2,975,000


Commercial and residential lots available in all prices and sizes. Located on the highway or tucked away from the road. A variety of opportunities available! MLS# 79481 $195,000 .88 acre MLS# 83330 $125,000 .56 acre MLS# 83331 $309,000 1.44 acre MLS# 87732 $780,000 2 acres MLS# 89431 .............................. SOLD MLS# 89432 .............................. SOLD MLS# 89433 .............................. SOLD MLS# 89434 .............................. SOLD MLS# 92135 $79,000 .4 acre MLS# 92137 $169,000 .98 acre MLS# 92139 $169,000 1.01 acres MLS# 92140 $219,000 1.41 acres

12 • All properties can be found at


Your Taos Ski Valley Specialist! : Keith Dowell, Qualifying Broker : Phone: (575) 776.0600 : #5 Ernie Blake Road, Taos Ski Valley, NM 87525


Upscale SKI IN / SKI OUT condo! On the Rio Hondo. Great views of the river and slopes. Lots ofsun light. Great ploor plan. Affordable dues. NEW roof, Jacuzzi bathtub, wood stove, storage closet, steam shower, COVERED PARKING! Good Rental history. MLS# 94152 .........Unit #9 ..............$349,000


LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION!! Nice and roomy threebedroom condominium at Sierra del Sol. HIGH ceilings. Scenic balcony with OUTSTANDING MOUNTAIN VIEWS of the slopes and the Rio Hondo River. World-class location just steps from the ski lift. Good rental history and management. MLS# 92682 .....$279,000 Reduced to $249,000 .....................UNDER CONTRACT


SKI IN / SKI OUT! Top floor unit with HIGH vaulted ceilings! Great views of RIVER and SLOPES. Lots of sun light. Deck is right above River!! UPSCALE turn-key unit. Affordable dues, NEW Roof, Jacuzzi bathtub, wood stove, steam shower, large storage closet. COVERED PARKING! Owner/Broker MLS# 94072 .........Unit #5 ..............$439,000


Deluxe Mountain Condominium in the Heart of the Rockies directly on the Rio Hondo River. Great 1BR unit exuding a rustic, casual elegance feel. Well appointed with new appliances and decor. Enjoy the ambiance of the river and the Alpine Scenery. Established rental program in place. Only 4BR condo in TSV! MLS# 92911 .......$319,000 $259,000 .........4BR / 2BA MLS# 93759 .......$99,000 $85,000..............1BR / 1BA


Ski Chalet in prime location at Taos Ski Valley! Up stairs and Sturdy, two-story rustic home with good bones. Decks with unbelievable views! Downstairs on first floor is a separate care taker studio. Small unit but has kitchen & bathroom as well. Access to ski trail a short walk! Comes with separate lot next door. MLS# 94092 ................$479,000 .............3BR / 2BA Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •


Quality custom home designed by the late architect Gary Embler. A great location just a mile from world-class Taos Ski Valley. The two decks and oversized windows enhance the STUNNING ROCKY MOUNTAIN VIEWS. This house exudes quality craftmanship. MLS# 93596 .......$699,000 Reduced to $649,000


Well built home in Taos Ski Valley. Located just a mile from the ski area, this home gives you great access to all the mountain brings. Skiing, hiking, bike riding and much more are just out the door. A contemporary, rustic design that gives this home the mountain feel. MLS# 93558.... $459,000 Reduced to $439,000 ..........3BR / 2BA


Beautiful 3 bedroom / 2 bathroom with high tongue and groove ceilings and vigas. Luxurious home features saltillo tiles, french doors, and two great living areas. Excellent scenery. Attractive wood fence surrounds a large, one acre lot. New 900 square feet, two car garage adds value to this outstanding property. HOT TUB INCLUDED! MLS# 92631 ...... $289,000 Reduced to $275,000 ..........................SOLD

13 • All properties can be found at

Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

14 • All properties can be found at

Page Sullivan GROUP Page Sullivan

Pumice Home in Llano Quemado

Peaceful, Easy Feeling

Wonderful Light-filled Home

3BR/3BA/2496sf home with attached 2CG on one tranquil, park-like acre. Excellent passive solar gain, beautiful landscaping, custom woodwork, ideal for entertaining.

3BR/2BA/2498sf home with contemporary style, 925sf of deck & patio, & a 797sf workshop, all on two acres. Landscaping includes drip irrigation, lush grassy lawn, 100+ trees.

2BR/2BA/1138sf home on 0.63 acres has lots of lovely details, including large living/dining area & nice kitchen. Sound-insulated, private setting, drip irrigation, water rights.

MLS 90864

MLS 92988

MLS 92928




Land and Acreage Sanctuary Minutes from Town

Upscale In-town Condo

Spacious Contemporary Home

This 2BR/2.5BA/1850sf two-story condo feels like a single-family home. High-end finishes, granite counters, stained concrete floors, open floor plan. Walk to shopping, dining, Plaza!

3BR/2.5BA/2695sf with heated attached 2CG on 0.78 acres. Perfect blend of contemporary style & traditional Southwest features. Spectacular views from indoors & out, covered portal.

MLS 82293

MLS 91401



Looking for the perfect land on which to build the perfect home? Look no further! 2.2 beautiful, forested acres less than 10 minutes to Taos Plaza. Spectacular building sites. MLS 89983 $280,000

Taos Ski Valley Land Lot 18 in the Kachina Subdivision is 0.78 acres of pure mountain splendor. Gently rolling land, multiple building spots. Adjoins Lot 19 (MLS 93057). Buy one or both & construct the retreat of your dreams. MLS 89709

Valle Escondido Lakeview

Three for One!

3BR/2BA/1700sf getaway with detached 1CG on 0.34 acres in our own beautiful hidden valley is move-in ready! High ceilings, custom cabinets, large deck. Exceptional lot & setting.

Three independent homes: 3BR/2BA/1654sf main house, 2BR/2BA/880sf two-story guesthouse, & 2BR/1BA/1208sf studio on 0.78 acres. Each home is appropriate for rental. Landscaping, privacy, views!

MLS 92306

MLS 92315



Kachina Subdivision


Lot 19 in Taos Ski Valley's Kachina Subdivision, 0.8 acres with favorable CC&Rs and the bluest skies in New Mexico. Adjoins Lot 18 (MLS 89709). Put them together & build your own mini-resort. MLS 93057


Well, Well, Well!

Bent St. Garden District

Architectural Appeal & Big Views

This lovely, pristine 1575sf adobe on 0.11 acres is on the National Register of Historic Places. Currently a gallery, with past lives as a home, a restaurant, office space, & retail store.

3BR/2BA/2212sf home with attached 2CG on 1.21 acres in Vista Linda. Gourmet kitchen, open floor plan, luxurious baths, pristine condition. Check out the golf course from your back portal!

MLS 90815

MLS 92460


Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •


This 10-acre parcel of land on the West Rim Road offers amazing views, with a functioning well on a well share and electricity at the lot—rare assets west of the Gorge! MLS 89997



15 • All properties can be found at

View All Taos MLS Listings at LoTA ReALTy, INC.

JAN RADER, CRS, GRI 575-770-2012


VALDEZ – (94323) Spacious 2 BR/3 BA condominium in the Valdez foothills, easy access to Taos Ski Valley. Ceilings feature vigas and beams, there are 3 kiva fireplaces. Main floor has a large living area, kitchen, dining area and full bath. Upstairs has two bedrooms, each with private bath. This well maintained end unit is offered fully furnished and equipped--just in time for ski season! $150,000 CALL JAN RADER

ARROYO HONDO – (93717) This inviting true adobe 2BR/1BA home sits on 1.27 acres high on a ridge in Arroyo Hondo. Open floor plan, numerous south facing windows provide great solar gain and spectacular panoramic views. Viga ceilings and a wood burning stove add warmth and charm. Easy access from SR 522. Wonderful full time residence or vacation getaway. $249,000 CALL JAN RADER

TOWN OF TAOS – (94099) Lovely in-town patio home, great southwestern features. 2BR/2BA open living area, lots of storage. Attached heated garage. No HOA fees! Convenient to everything. $299,000 CALL JAN RADER


BLUEBERRY HILL – (94101) Classic pueblo style 2 BR/2BA home in desirable area of Blueberry Hill. Light & bright with great passive solar gain. Vigas throughout, beautifully remodeled kitchen with custom cherry cabinets and tasteful tile countertops. Two kiva fireplaces. brick floors, panoramic views. Perfect for full time or vacation residence. $300,000 CALL JAN RADER

COUNTRY CLUB – (93397) This beautiful, spacious 3BR/3BA adobe home at Taos Country Club has been immaculately maintained. The thoughtful floor plan features 2 master suites; open living and dining areas are ideal for entertaining. Extensive landscaping flower beds, native plantings and fruit trees. There are too many special features to describe…you must see for yourself! $795,000 CALL JAN RADER

TOWN OF TAOS – (94325) Lovely in-town property with mountain views...a rare find. Spacious home on a beautiful green lot with trees, on a quiet side street. Ground floor features family room, laundry, powder room, two guest suites. Upstairs is light and bright, many windows, great views, high ceilings. Large master suite has a private office. Kitchen is huge, open to great room with many built-ins, kiva fireplace. 3 car heated garage. $695,000 CALL JAN RADER

Corner of Paseo del Pueblo Norte & Civic Plaza Drive 800-829-8673

DES MONTES – (94392) This oversized lot, 14.4 acres, in beautiful Mariposa Ranch offers panoramic views. Underground utilities and shared well are in place. It’s an ideal site for your future dream home. Intelligent covenants protect your investment and privacy. Easy access to town and Taos Ski Valley. $255,000 CALL JAN RADER

JUDY BUCK 575-758-8673

corner of Paseo del Pueblo norte & civic Plaza Drive 800-829-8673

Lota ReaLty, Inc.

HISTORIC ADOBE COSTILLA – (94608) Historic 1850’s home, lovingly restored with several original architectural details intact. This 2 bedroom house has huge trees, orchard, room for horses and it borders the Rio Costilla! Old adobe on one of the lots can be restored or expanded with plans available. A unique opportunity to own a part of historic northern New Mexico. $160,000 CALL JUDY BUCK BEAUTIFULLY RENOVATED, CIRCA 1850. TOWN OF TAOS – (91300) Walk to the Plaza with easy access to restaurants, galleries, Kit Carson Park and all the shops from this lovingly restored historic property. On one of the prettiest streets in Taos, the main house features 3BR/2BA and spacious rooms for dining and entertaining. The separate guest house preserves everyone’s privacy and has a wonderful, magical wine cellar. The grounds are professionally designed and provide the perfect outside space with huge trees, lush gardens and a walled courtyard. $1,250,000 CALL JUDY BUCK

TAOS CANYON – (94353) Great escape to the trees with frontage on the Rio Fernando, this lot has lots of outstanding features and it’s very affordable. $35,000 CALL JUDY BUCK VALDEZ – (94255) An interesting piece of history and a great building site at a reasonable price. views out over the valley! Surrounds old morada ruin with lots of room left to build on creating views out over the Valdez Valley!! $110,000 CALL JUDY BUCK CARSON – (92970) Stunning 360 degree views from 79 acres parcel with lots of room to roam! It is full of interesting geological terrain including a major petaca with utilities nearby and several access roads. $197,500 CALL JUDY BUCK

corner of Paseo del Pueblo norte & civic Plaza Drive 800-829-8673

View All Taos MLS Listings at

PETE FRENCH Associate Broker

575.770.4322 Lota ReaLty, Inc.

DES MONTES – (94128) This two acre parcel has verdant pastures with views and water rights. Prime location convenient to Arroyo Seco and Taos Ski Valley. $200,000 CALL PETE FRENCH

TOWN OF TAOS - (94055) A very spacious four bedroom, 3 bath home with exquisite landscaping and views. Tile floors, hickory floor in the master suite. An covered patio, two large water features in the back yard. $849,000 CALL PETE FRENCH

UPPER COLONIAS – (93820) Big mountain views capture sunrises and sunsets. Gourmet kitchen features granite counter tops, large pantry. Master suite, walk in closet, glass enclosed shower, separate soaking tub with mountain view. Perfect floor plan with its separate master suite and 2 guest bedrooms and bath. Large outdoor stone patio. $499,000 CALL PETE FRENCH

CANON – (93248) A wonderful piece of property with 360 views, water rights, minutes from town but very rural feeling. $249,000 CALL PETE FRENCH

TAOS SKI VALLEY – (81550) Snakedance Condos & Spa granite tile kitchen countertops, travertine in baths, gas log fireplaces. Ski-in/ski-out, superior amenities: valet, ski valet, hot-tub, sauna, locker/exercise & massage rooms, on-site management company with proven track record. $379,000 CALL PETE FRENCH

LOWER LAS COLONIAS – (94235) Views above Lower Las Colonias, 3BR/2BA with a lovely covered patio to enjoy the mountain views. $379,000 CALL PETE FRENCH

corner of Paseo del Pueblo norte & civic Plaza Drive 800-829-8673

View All Taos MLS Listings at

Christine Vargas | Co-owner of Vargas Tile


1 Vargas Tile Company was established in 1961. How has the business evolved over fifty years? My parents started the company with just $700 that my uncle loaned them. At first they only sold paint. The store, located then in the main drag, was called The Paint Pot. Later they began selling Wellborn Paint and eventually expanded to Mexican tiles and carpets so they changed the name again to Vargas Paint and Tile. The business increased as Taos started to grow. By 1974, the building and everything else was paid off. In 2003 we moved here, to Ranchos de Taos, because we needed a bigger store. We sold the paint business on 2006 and have kept only tile, which is probably the most reasonably priced that you can find in Taos.

2 How do you create successful, long-term client relationships? My sister Viviana and I do more than just sell tile. We sit with our clients and help them with the design and layout of their projects, sometimes for several hours, until we are sure that the final result will be what they like. Our goal is that they leave the store happy.

3 What was the best thing you ever did for growing your business? Installing a show window in our first store, in 1994. We put sinks and tile displays there and the business grew, in a few months, like 400 percent. People would come and say, “We didn’t know that you sold tile,” even though we had been selling it for years. We also started getting orders from tourists. We have shipped Mexican tiles to Japan, Europe and Australia. We learned a lesson — you need to let people know what you have. 4 What makes your store unique? Our great customer service, in the first place. And the beautiful colors we have here, all these bright Mexican shades. We have learned a lot from our clients, many of whom are artists, about color and design, and we apply this knowledge to the store decoration. Third, our prices are lower than most stores in town and we can even be competitive with big companies like Lowe’s and Home Depot. Finally, the presence of Tiny Marie Vargas, our nine-pound calico cat — she has been a store fixture for almost 20 years.

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5 When a business has been around for so long, there must be many memorable experiences associated with it. Is there one in particular that you would like to share? My dad was always around, ready to greet patrons. One day, Julia Roberts came in and introduced herself, “Hi, I’m Julia Roberts.” My dad shook her hand and said, calmly, “Hi, I’m Bob Vargas.” When she left, we told him, “Dad, she is a famous actress! Everybody knows her!” He looked at my sisters and me and replied, “Ah, ustedes son más bonitas.” (You are prettier). Talk about family loyalty! 6 He must have been quite a character. Did he have a business motto? As a matter of fact, he did. He used to say, “I like to pay my employees the most I can.” That’s why the business flourished. When employees are happy, sales go up. 7 How have you managed to stay in business during economic downturns? We all have a strong faith. After several days with no sales at all, we began praying together every morning and suddenly, things got better. Besides, we are somewhat oldfashioned. We still have a ledger like the one my dad used 50 years ago and I can tell you right away what the state of our finances was in 1998. We don’t fear a computer virus or a hacker’s attack. 8 What advice would you give to someone wanting to start a business? Know your products well, pay your suppliers in time so you build up good credit and don’t hire managers at first. Find out by yourself how your business works. As my father would say, “El que tiene tienda, que la atienda. Y si no, que la venda.” (He who has a store must take care of it, or just sell it.) 9 After devoting so many years to a family business, what does it mean to you? Vargas Tile has been good to us. It has given the family a livelihood and respect in the community.

Vargas Tile is located at 4114 New Mexico 68, Ranchos de Taos Phone: (575) 758-5986

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corner of Paseo del Pueblo norte & civic Plaza Drive 800-829-8673

Lota ReaLty, Inc.

FRANK DAILEY 575-770-2256

GREAT HORSE PROPERTY Beautiful Ranch with Territorial home and Guest House. Lots of Pasture land and artesian well. Organic gardens. A must see area and property. Great view of Taos from a few miles away. $349,000 MLS#93287 CALL FRANK DAILEY


UPGRADED IN TOWN CONDO Tastefully decorated and upgraded in-town 2B, 2BA condo. Pergo wood floors, vigas, etc. Great patio and living area. Extensive upgrades in kitchen, living area and bath rooms. Vigas and tongue & groove ceilings. Large, beautifully landscaped common area. Park-like setting. Furnishings negotiable. REDUCED TO $219,900 MLS#93422 CALL FRANK DAILEY

IN TOWN NATIONAL HISTORIC LANDMARK Historic Landmark with luxury standards. 100 yards to the plaza, thick adobe walls, modern appliances. Homes come partially furnished. Kiva fireplaces, guest house for guests or rental income. Behind RC Gorman Gallery. Great location and it’s quiet. $395,000 MLS#92929 CALL FRANK DAILEY

corner of Paseo del Pueblo norte & civic Plaza Drive 800-829-8673

View All Taos MLS Listings at

Interested in seeing your Taos photo published in the next issue of Enchanted Homes? I am. Submit your photos today! Call 758-2241 x113 or e-mail for details.

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realtor profile | Rick Reeves

From wineries to real estate by teResa doVaLPage PHoto by tina LaRkin

Rick Reeves, an associate broker at Taos Properties, and his wife moved to Taos in 2010, but the mountains had been calling them for a long time. They came to ski and hike, then bought a lot in town, built a house and finally settled here for good. Reeves started his Taos life by managing some rental properties he had bought. He also enjoyed the great outdoors as a co-director of the local hiking group, The Lost Boys, “which also includes ladies,” he points out. “But I found out that skiing and hiking, while fun, still didn’t take up all of my time,” he said. “My interest was sparked in real estate. I took some classes and then the exam. After receiving my license, I went to work for Taos Properties, which I already knew since I have bought my investment properties through them.” Reeves’ background includes a career of almost 30 years in the wine industry. “Owning and managing my own wine store meant working with many of the same customers for several years,” he said. “I was able to establish good working relationships. My customers would come back to me repeatedly to purchase specialty wines. They came to rely on me.” He has transferred these skills to his real estate business. “Of course, purchasing a home is a bigger commitment than buying a bottle or a case of wine,” he said, “but I believe that the skills involved in gaining the clients’ trust and fulfilling their needs are very similar.” Listening, not dictating

“For Reeves, being able to listen to what people want and doing his best to find what they’re looking for in a home are key elements in his business. “I’d say listening to instead of dictating to people is what defines my style,” he said. “I also try to maintain a high degree of responsibility when dealing with my clients.” He tries to keep up to date with technology. During his first year as a Realtor, Reeves has relied mainly on the Taos Property website, but he is planning to develop his own in the future. “I have to confess I’ve been slow to use much of social media,” he admits, “but I’m forcing myself every day to start using sites like Facebook to a greater degree.” Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

His biggest challenge is staying focused on a day-to-day basis. “There are so many fun activities like skiing and hiking in Taos that it takes greater effort to set short-term goals and get them done,” he said. But still, Reeves sets goals for himself. For 2014 he is determined to increase his use of social media for marketing and establishing client relationships as the primary way of growing his business over the next 12 months. a ReaLtoR in taos

The best thing about being a Realtor here is “meeting all of the new interesting people that are moving to Taos.” “There tend to be many well-traveled people with unique occupations that want to come here,” Reeves said. “It’s fun learning their stories and what has brought them to Taos.” Reeves is confident about the state of the Taos housing market. “It’s up again this year,” he said. “Residential volume is going to be up more than 10 percent over last year for Taos County, with approximately the same number of transactions. The average sales price has increased significantly by 15 percent to over $270,000. Even more interesting, land transactions are up over $5 million this year versus last with a gross volume over $13 million.” This is good news for those that have been trying to sell their land over the last few years. Reeves believes that Taos is still a buyer’s market with less expensive homes selling faster, but the trend in sales is up. “My advice to buyers is to get in the game now and to sellers, to be patient as the market picks up,” he said. so you want to be a ReaLtoR

His best advice to prospective Realtors is to talk with some experienced people in the industry and figure out if this is right for them. “Being a Realtor takes a lot of self-motivation and discipline, so look within yourself and decide for sure if you’re ready for the ups and downs,” he said. “Also, ask yourself if you’re ready for a lot of paperwork!” To contact Reeves visit the website Or call (575) 758-9500 (office) and (575) 770-4502 (cell)

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Lota ReaLty, Inc.

corner of Paseo del Pueblo norte & civic Plaza Drive 800-829-8673


teaM MeIeR

Brigid Meier & Mike Birdsong Modeled after the iconic Ranchos Church, this 2 story adobe was designed by Dennis Holloway, Architect for the late, beloved Taos artist, Charlie Strong for his personal residence and studio. There are attached guest quarters which could be rented out and the large, high ceilinged room upstairs could be YOUR studio. There are many unique architectural details, 3 kiva fireplaces and a great deck with another fireplace upstairs from which to enjoy the expansive, spectacular views of Taos. Priced well below its value at $659,000, this qualifies as a killer deal. An adjacent 3 acres is also available. Call 1-800-347-1794, ext 1519  for free, 24-hour information on this property or call Mike Birdsong 741-9351 for an appointment for a showing.

mLS #94477

Unique Artist’s Home Los Pandos Lane Condominiums • High Performance • Energy Efficient Free-Standing 3 Bedroom, 2 Bath Courtyard Homes With 2 Private Walled Patios And Attached Garage. • One of six currently under construction, Completion scheduled for end of March • There is still time to pick your finishes • Photo of existing occupied units across the driveway PRE-SALES/SITES/CUSTOm HOmES/ UPgRADES On UnfInISHED HOmES

Call mike Birdsong 575-741-9351 Free 24 hr. Recorded Information

1-800-347-1794 ext. 9991

PURE TAOS PARADISE! From $449,000. mLS #94291

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price comparison | here & there

Living in Season Enjoy seasonal living any time of the year. Compare these ideal properties where summer, winter, spring and fall each have their own unique appeal. Taos, NM

Crested Butte, CO



3 BD/2 BA, 3,522 sq. ft. 0.35 acres MLS #91300

5 BD/5.5 BA, 4,906 sq.ft. 0.4 acres

Elegant Oasis

Sunny Log Home

Walk to the Plaza with easy access to restaurants, galleries, Kit Carson Park and all the shops from this lovingly restored historic property. The main house is 3,522 sqare feet with a 1,200-square-foot guest house on 0.35 acres with a three-car garage, winde cellar, and two fireplaces. On one of the prettiest streets in Taos, the main house features three bedrooms and three baths and spacious rooms for dining and entertaining. The separate guest house with one bedroom and one bath preserves everyone’s privacy and has a wonderful, magical wine cellar. The grounds are professionally designed and provide the perfect outside space with huge trees, lush gardens and a walled courtyard. Annual property taxes are $2024. Contact: Judy Buck Coldwell Banker LOTA Realty, Inc. Telephone: (575) 758-8673

Artistically designed to take advantage of the views, this attractive home steps down the hillside and unfolds into a spectacular mountain retreat. Meticulously maintained, this 5 bedroom, 5.5 bath residence is perfect for entertaining extended family and friends. Totally remodeled in 2011, the kitchen is complete with granite & top of the line stainless appliances – it is a chef’s dream! The great room with vaulted ceilings, a massive fireplace & wet bar is spacious and opens onto a beautiful deck. The master suite wing creates a sense of privacy - just steps down from the main living area with convenient access to the hot tub & sauna. The next level hosts two junior master suites which open out onto a beautiful stone terrace nestled in the trees. And that’s not all - as you step down into the bottom level of this mountain home you’ll be surrounded by tastefully painted mountain murals that adorn the walls of 2 more bedrooms or walk upstairs to the loft den with another full bathroom that could be used as a 6th bedroom. Outdoor living on the extensive deck, patios and large bar/BBQ area is enhanced by the mature evergreen and aspen trees, as well as the colorful wildflower gardens that surround this home. Annual property taxes are $6819 Contact: Molly Eldridge Red Lady Realty 15 Elk Avenue, Crested Butte, CO 81224 (970) 209-4234

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225 Kit Carson Road


FOOTHILLS OASIS - Two energy-efficient homes on 1.0 landscaped acre. 2BR/1BA 1800 sq.ft. pumice-crete main house + 1BR/1BA 1100 sq.ft guest house. Extensive trees, terraced gardens, stone walls, flagstone walkways, lawn, drip irrigation, garden beds w/ rich soil. Privacy & fabulous views overlooking the valley. $525,000 MLS #94146

CLASSIC ADOBE - Original home built around 1860, renovated in 2005. 3BR/2BA, 1800 sq. ft. Flexible floor  plan. Currently an artist’s residence and studio.  Large living room faces south, with valley views. Fruit trees, pleasant enclosed front courtyard. If you’re looking for an authentic Taos home, put this on your list! $225,000  MLS #94036.

LUXURY CONDO IN TOWN - Free-standing 2BR/2 BA w/ attached 1-car garage, less than a mile from Plaza. Open floor plan, high ceilings, fireplace. Vibrant colors, high-end finishes. In-floor radiant heat, granite counter tops, brick paver floors. Spacious private grounds with large patio, wildflowers, trees, hot tub and great views. $395,000 MLS #93832

CREATIVE & COMFORTABLE – Artistic 3BR/1.5BA adobe w/ attached studio. Excellent passive solar gain + wood stove for low energy bills!  Gardens & trees, lovely outdoor living spaces.  On 0.97 pastoral acres, with fine views, about 12 minutes south of Town center. $269,000  MLS #93742 

COzY AND CUTE - 3BR/2BA 1,475 sq.ft. southwestern style home. Wood stoves for added warmth and low heating bills. Fully-fenced 1-acre lot with trees and wide views. Attached greenhouse. Peaceful, tranquil setting on a quiet dead-end street just 7 minutes (4 miles) from Town center, near shopping, hospital. $249,000 MLS #95442

HOME WITH SPIRIT - Sunny 2BR/1BA adobe on 1.1 acres w/ great views. Cozy SW style, 2 FP’s, vigas, saltillo tile, nichos. In-floor radiant heat + good passive solar.  Fenced yard w trees, large deck, ramada.  Sweet home! $215,000  MLS #92045

FABULOUS VIEWS - Beautiful 3BR/3BA w/ 2,800 sq. ft. of casual elegance. Gorgeous master suite w/ huge bath, private deck. Four FP’s, two patios, hot tub.  On a ridge overlooking scenic valley.  Sublime mtn. views.  Wonderful home and/or vacation rental. $569,000   MLS #93550

ECO-FRIENDLY - Energy-efficient strawbale construction. Beautifully-detailed 1,700 sq.ft. 3BR/1BA rich in natural character artisitic touches. Off-the-grid. Great outdoor living areas, fenced gardens, detached studio/workshop + storage barn. On 9.76 irrigated acres w/panoramic views in all directions. Add’l land available. $250,000 MLS #90652

PRIME COMMERCIAL - In heart of Central Business District, near entrance to Taos Plaza. Over 5,000 sq. ft. street-level + 2,450 s.f. very good basement space. Perfect retail location! Excellent foot traffic & visibility.  Currently divided into two galleries. Seller financing! $889,000  MLS #91408

STUNNING IN-TOWN CONDO - Large 2-BR/2.5-BA only 0.6 mile from Taos Plaza. Vibrant colors, high ceilings, private walled patio, upstairs deck w/ hot tub, high-end kitchen. Beautifully landscaped grounds. Walk to galleries, shops, restaurants. Fully furnished.  One of Taos’ very best condo projects. $419,000 MLS #94654

VISTA GRANDE - The views are indeed grand on this 4.4-acre lot in a high-quality subdivision. Underground utilities.  Shared well in place. Sensible restrictions.  Preferred north side location, with easy access to Town and Ski Valley.  Buy to build your home or just as a good investment! $159,000   MLS #90598 

LIkE THE ART BUSINESS? - One of Taos’ best galleries is available! In business for 25 years, excellent reputation & client list. Terrific opportunity to step into the beautiful world of northern NM art. Solid income.  Seller financing available. Favorable lease terms. Details available to qualified buyers. Visit $210,000 MLS 94461

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real estate finance | Ted Dimond

Is a biweekly mortgage payment plan worth it? by tED DIMOND

Shortly after securing a new mortgage loan a borrower is likely to receive an offer from the lender to establish a biweekly payment plan with promises that by doing so the borrower will save tens of thousands of dollars in interest payments by reducing the amortization period of their loan by many years. While these claims are true, a borrower should consider the following. Most lenders charge a fee of $300 to $500 to set up the plan and often a small transaction fee for each payment without disclosing that to a borrower. Borrowers can accomplish the same on their own without any additional fees by making one extra payment each year. Most loans are amortized (or reviewed) once a month independent of whether or not a borrower pays once a month or every two weeks. In other words, paying every two weeks doesn’t create any more advantage to the borrower than making 13 monthly payments per year. It doesn’t matter whether that 13th payment is made in one lump sum once a year or by adding 1/12th of the monthly payment onto each monthly payment. Even if you pay every two weeks, nothing is credited to your account until the monthly due date. In most cases the only advantage gleaned by borrowers in making half payments every two weeks is that they are making 26 half payments or 13 full payments. Most importantly one needn’t pay a lender to create such a strategy but rather could accomplish the same benefit by disciplining one’s self to consistently make that extra payment regularly on time either online, by check or an automatic withdrawal from one’s bank. It is true many borrowers are inconsistent with their payments and sometimes don’t pay until later in the month or decide not always to make the extra payment. In that case the benefit of setting up such a plan with the lender eliminates that variable. But with the benefits of online technology it’s easier than ever to make regular payments on time. The borrower is misled to believe the biweekly plan creates additional benefits. Instead one can simply write a half monthly check every two weeks and put it in an envelope. Then mail two checks to the lender each month. At the end of the year they will have two checks left

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which they can then mail to the lender and create the same benefit for themselves. Another element rarely disclosed by the lender is that the amount of benefit, i.e., the interest savings and reduction in term of the loan depends entirely on the interest rate. For example at 7 percent on a 30year fixed loan (an outrageously high rate at this time) the borrower will pay off the loan in 23.9 years and save $33,555 in interest on each $100,000 — if the borrower begins the plan at the outset of the loan and doesn’t deviate from this approach. The same loan at 4.5 percent interest would be paid off in 25.7 years and save just $13,619 per $100,000. It is true some banks review loans more than once a month. In that case there would be additional benefit to paying every two weeks. But those plans are far and away the exception. If contemplating the biweekly option, check with your bank to see how often that loan is amortized, or reviewed. On Dec. 18 at Ben Bernanke’s last meeting as the head of the Federal Reserve, the reserve said it “would gradually end it’s bond-buying program during 2014 calling it a modest first step toward unwinding the central bank’s broader stimulus campaign as its officials gain confidence that the economy is growing steadily,” according to the New York Times. This bond-buying program has kept long-term interest rates low and in many people’s opinion was one of the factors that kept the economy afloat. By the time you read this article we will have seen the impact on rates for the following 60 days. On Dec. 18, the day the Federal Reserve made this announcement, the stock market rose and rates remained the same. Rates for a 30-year fixed were roughly 4.5-4.75 on the last day of 2013. What are they now?

Ted Dimond has lived in Taos since 1976. He has been a residential mortgage broker since 1994 and has owned and operated Dimond Mortgage with his wife Vanessa since 2003. Ted can be reached via email

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“This home’s kitchen is noteworthy for the harmonious way it blends into the home.”


vernight guests will appreciate the comfort and privacy of the one-bedroom/one-bathroom guesthouse (casita). Traditional fireplaces (kivas) are prominent in the main house and casita.

And staying in shape couldn’t be any easier or more relaxing than with the modern gym facility for exercise and the pool pavilion for swimming laps. The Ancient Romans had a vast and varied territory in which foods and spices from all over the Empire poured into the food stalls in Rome. Therefore, Ancient Romans were gourmets and prided themselves with intimate family dinners and more jovial dinner parties. This home’s kitchen is noteworthy for the harmonious way it blends into the home. It has a Viking range with six burners and two ovens, making it easy to prepare large and diverse amounts of food. The granite countertops, tiled backsplash, and stainless steel appliances give the kitchen a sleek yet country ranch feel. There is plenty of cabinet space for food and gadget storage. The kitchen table is located in front of the sink island making it easy for uninterrupted conversation.

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“All of the bathrooms in this home are well appointed”


uxuriating in a hot spring has been a human calling since the beginning of time. But the Romans really perfected the art of a warm bath at home. While all of the bathrooms in this home are well appointed, the main master bathroom measures 12 by 15 feet with travertine tile floors. It has a large Waterworks soaking tub and a walk-in steam shower. There is a huge dressing area with walk-in closets.

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a conversation with Lisa Braselle of Granite Concepts

Solid surfaces for the bath and kitchen By Andy denniSon photo By tinA lArkin

Hugh and Lisa Braselle


n a bathroom or kitchen, more often than not it’s the countertop that first catches the eye. It also is the element in either room that gets the most wear and tear, so the material used must hold up to the abuse that surface will invariably take. In Taos, the appeal of a natural-looking countertop suits the rustic, outdoors types who call this mountain town their home. In this Kitchen and Bath issue of Enchanted Homes, we sat down with Lisa Braselle, of Granite Concepts, to talk about the business of bringing sturdy yet stunning surfaces to kitchens and bathrooms in the Taos area. Taos News: Tell us a bit about the history of your business. Lisa BraseLLe: My husband Hugh was a stone contractor for many years, and he traveled all over the country. He had a partner, Bob Loveless, who lived in Taos. I had always wanted to move out of the hustle and bustle of Southern California so, in 1994, we moved to Valle Escondido. Quite a change! But I loved it as an off-the-grid mom. After about 10 years, one of Hugh’s goals was to stop traveling, and the chance came after he worked with Bob at El Monte Sagrado. We settled in Taos and opened Granite Concepts in 2004. TN: What was the 2004 market like and how did you get the business going? LB: It was booming here, lots of contractors building spec homes. Lots of custom homes and remodeling going on. I’m good at marketing and I knew the contractors’ lingo because my family had been in contracting. So, I’d walk on to the job site, ask the general if I could bid the countertops and, since there wasn’t another fabricator in town, we found a niche. TN: What has been your business plan, your philosophy? LB: We are a husband-and-wife business, and we always wanted to keep things small. We’ve had four people working for us since the beginning. Hugh’s role is running that crew, directing fabrication and installation. I’m the one out front, the marketer. As for our philosophy, we come to work every day knowing we have a huge responsibility to create perfect products for our customers. TN: Talk about fabricating and the materials you use. LB: We specialize in solid surfaces, meaning either natural or

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manmade granite, marble, soapstone, those sorts of materials. We’re a bit more “old world” than the production shops because we have a small staff and we do a lot of handwork with our power tools. It’s a lost art to do the cutting by hand, not by laser, but it’s something we’re proud of and obviously our customers like it. TN: Tell us about how you help customers come to a decision about their countertops. LB: I love to help people design and plan, so much so that it’s a free service. I found I was good at helping them make a decision. People come in here with kind of an idea of what they want, but not specifically. Like the colors they like, or the textures, or something they saw in another house. After talking for a bit, I get the idea of where to lead them, because I know the products so well. TN: What are the trends in the industry these days? LB: Solid surfaces of any kind are in. Most people have moved away from tile; they don’t want grout on their work surfaces, so it’s the solid surfaces. On top of that, this is an industry that keeps changing, so what ever is new is often what people want. In Taos, it’s natural stone rather than manmade stone because of where we live – in the Rocky Mountains. And, these stones are coming from all over the world these days. TN: How’s the Taos market these days? LB: We’re scheduled out through March, so it’s great. In Angel Fire, there are a bunch of large custom homes going up. We work with four of the premier builders in Angel Fire. In Red River, those Texans still seem to have money and want to remodel, especially in the Upper Valley area. For Taos, the second-home owners have come back and want to remodel, either to use their house more or put it on the market. There are so many older homes in town, so we have plenty of customers right here. TN: And the future? LB: I think the sale of Taos Ski Valley (to billionaire conservationist Louis Bacon) will infuse lots of new money into town. We’ve found new people moving to town who can make their living from anywhere. They are diverse, smart people who know what they want. I believe Taos will grow, and that’ll be good for us.

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EL SALTO HOME WITH ACEQUIA MADRE! Lush land w/surface water rights! Trees! Pasture! Amazing El Salto views! 1.79 acres. 2135 sq ft, 2 bdrm, 2 bath house PLUS bonus rooms with many possibilities. Wrap around portal. Lovely setting! Carport. Shed. Quality, carved wood doors. Open great room concept. MLS 94290 $595,000

ICONIC BUILDING IN ARROYO SECO Sweet! Front portal. 656 sq ft., .05 acres. Spacious entry. Full bath. Small kitchenette. Upstairs bedroom with a large deck facing the main village and smaller deck facing the lush, treed, back yard. Property goes to the Seco Stream. Exterior staircase to second floor. MLS 94313 $175,000

THE CONDO THAT LIVES LIKE A HOUSE! The in-town, walk-to-the-Plaza, freestanding condo that looks, feels and lives like a house! Beautifully appointed throughout. Kiva fireplace. Dramatic windows. Open kitchen with granite counter tops. Dining area. Breakfast counter. 2 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. 2 courtyards. Garage. MLS 93179 $449,000

PASSIVE SOLAR PUEBLO STYLE HOME Located at the end of a quiet little street! Easy access to town and the Taos Ski Valley. Passive solar design Winter warmth and lots of light. .75 acres, 1440 sq ft, 3 bdrms, 2 baths. Kiva fireplace. Extra room. Two courtyards. Attached oversized one car garage. MLS 94454 $242,500

GREATER WORLD HOME WITH STYLE! A perfect peaceful get away! Open kitchen dining room. Concrete floors. Laundry. Soaking tub. Huge bedroom w/ kiva fireplace. Simplicity and clean lines evoke a feeling of calm. 1.41 acres. 1380 sq ft. Endless views! Bright, sunny and open! MLS 93842 $195,000

CREATIVE SPACES! REFURBISHED ADOBE! 2.27 Acres. Fantastic views! Be your best creative self in this lovingly refurbished adobe home with a stylish, contemporary flair. 1760 sq ft. 1 bdrm, 2 bath. Newer kitchen. Beautiful bath. Vigas. 3 fireplaces. Walk in closet! Wood floors. Garage. MLS 94630 $385,000


2.5 acres. 2159 sq ft, 3 bdrms and 2.5 baths PLUS a 1 bdrm, 1 bath guest casita! Pumice construction with excellent passive solar design giving the house plenty of warmth and light. This home has a wonderful feel! Welcoming entry hall. Beautiful open kitchen with dramatic concrete counter tops and ample storage. Rich, stained concrete floors. Large dining room and living room with efficient wood burning fireplace. Spacious bedrooms (3rd bedroom would make a great studio or office, no closet). Fantastic baths. Wood ceilings with beams. Rich, chocolate color walls which display artwork beautifully. Wonderful outdoor spaces! MLS 94634 $475,000


Incredible solar adobe home. Great room floor plan. High, exposed beam ceilings. Long bank of windows that capture the stunning mountain views. 4444 square feet, 4 bedrooms, 5 baths on 8.4 acres. Lovely east facing patio with built in BBQ and hot tub. Energy efficient with active solar. Gourmet kitchen with top of the line appliances, breakfast counter, flagstone countertop and mahogany cabinets. Second floor office/ guest suite. Steam room. Media room. 3 car garage. Amazing storage building. Extensive landscaping with drip irrigation system. MLS 91012 $1,850, 000

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Convenient to town and ski valley! 2.27 acre lot. 2983 sq ft. 4 bdrms, 4 baths plus office/studio. Quality construction. Walled and gated entry courtyard. Dramatic fireplace. High wood ceilings with vigas. A cook’s kitchen which features a work island, stainless appliances and functional planning desk. Master suite has a kiva fireplace, walk in closet, access to a courtyard and a sumptuous 5 piece bath. 3 additional bedrooms PLUS a wonderful spacious office/studio! Attached, heated three car garage. Walled and gated back yard. Mountain views. Deep portal. Storage. MLS 94269 $675,000

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TOP OF THE WORLD VIEWS! RastraBlock construction. Magnificent mountain views. 1.97 acres. Trees! Walled front courtyard. Versatile, open floor plan. Kiva fireplace. Open kitchen with breakfast nook. 2 bdrms, 2 full baths PLUS a cozy loft/library and bonus room. 2 car garage. MLS 94163 $269,000

WONDERFUL WEIMER LOCATION! 1 acre parcel in Weimer. Sunrise to sunset light. Professional easy care landscape. Fenced yard. Front courtyard. Great room floor plan. 2 kiva fireplaces. Open kitchen w/work island. 2170 sq ft. 3 bdrms, 2 baths. Close to town and hospital! Security system. MLS 93094 $420,000

TWO GREAT HOUSES ~ ONE GREAT LOCATION 2 houses on beautiful tree lined Burch Street! A 2 bdrm, 1 bath, 1086 sq ft main house that is filled with classic Taos character, and a newer, fabulous 1 bdrm, 1 bath 768 sq ft guest house! Live in one, rent out the other? Or, live in one and use the other as a studio? Endless possibilities! MLS 94453 $449,000

HOUSE AND WORSHOP W/RV PARKING 1.79 acres. 3 bdrms, 2 baths. Portal. Gracious entry. Great room. Picture windows. 2 Kivas. Vigas. Open kitchen. Laundry w/ storage. Large master w/5 piece bath and walk in closet. Attached 2 car garage PLUS a detached 2 car garage w/ workshop and office! MLS 94664 $322,000

STYLISH IN-TOWN FREESTANDING CONDO Professional landscaping. Private courtyards. Hot tub. Great room. High ceilings. Open kitchen w/granite. 2 large bdrms, 2 baths. 1641 sq ft. Quality finishes. Brick floors. Close to town. Low utility bills especially with the new gas fireplace insert! Attached garage! MLS 94660 $389,000

LIGHT UP YOUR LIFE! VISTA LINDA 2085 sq ft 3 bdrm, 2 bath. Great room concept. Kiva. Vigas. Walled and gated backyard. Cheerful open kitchen. Large master bedroom with sumptuous bath and private balcony. Attached garage. Great views too! MLS 94470 $399,000

GREAT WEIMER BUILDING SITE! Can’t find the right house? Build your own! Fantastic views of Taos Mountain, the east foothills and the valley. Sunrise to sunset! Easy access to utilities. Good road. Close to town. Great walking! MLS 89708 $85,000

MARIPOSA RANCH LAND Gorgeous 10 acre lot in beautiful Des Montes. Smart building covenants to protect your views! 360 degree views sunrise to sunset. Borders 2000 acre ranch. Underground utilities in place! Shared well. MLS 93764 $259,000

Lost a pet? Found a pet? Call 751-8282

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Lost and Found pet information is announced on KTAO 101.9 twice daily. For six years, this community service has been brought to you by Lisa Davis at Prudential Taos Real Estate. Hear the daily report @

EL SALTO HOME IN PASTORAL SETTING Located on a quiet, level, private road. 1.5 acres. Water rights. Amazing views! 1964 sq ft. Adobe construction. 3 bdrms 2 baths. Great room floor plan with HUGE picture windows. Concrete floors. Kiva Vigas. Nichos. Skylights. Window seat. Deep portal. Walled courtyard. MLS 94364 $479,500

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OPPORTUNITY Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

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Market share | Harvey Blaustein

Advice to buyers by Harvey blaustein

OK, you’re a buyer in this market and you want one of those great deals you hear others are getting. How do you go about cashing in while it lasts? As a buyer there are many things you need to prepare before jumping into the pool. First, consider whether you are able to buy with cash or you need financing. Frankly, cash is king these days so gather your assets to see what you have available. There are at least two good reasons to use cash. First, you can eliminate the need for an appraisal, which saves you money and can be a great negotiating tool. With the lack of liquidity we find in our market today, it is hard to know what anything is worth. A good broker will give you a sense of relative value and if you trust your judgment and your broker, you may not need a third opinion — especially if you have to pay $500 for it. The other reason is points. They are a percentage of the money borrowed that conventional lenders generally charge for borrowing — yes, before they charge you interest. If you borrow $100,000, you pay a point. For those who pay cash, that is another $1,000 of potential savings. The actual number can vary but 1 percent is rather common. If you need to borrow, or choose to, get pre-qualified. I have found it helpful although some of those letters aren’t worth the paper they are written on. I actually had a local mortgage broker — no longer in business for reasons like this — issue one despite the fact the buyer had tax liens and no job. Those problems didn’t surface until much later in the process and after a lot of unnecessary work was done. Nonetheless, sellers want to know if a deal is going anywhere and this piece of paper might help. A bank will require an appraisal, which might work to your advantage. Maybe you get lucky and the appraisal comes in under the contract price. That could lead to a new negotiation at a lower price point, and you didn’t have to do the dirty work. Someone else did it for you and that might be worth the $500 fee.

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Assuming you find a property that you like, there are strategies to be employed that might help you get what you want. Space does not allow me to explore all of them in detail but such strategies as takeit-or-leave-it, offering cash and a quick close, or working one seller against another, can be employed. But each case is fact-sensitive and not one strategy will work all the time. One thing is for sure: you almost can’t insult a seller these days and you are bound to get a counter offer. The operative word here is almost. If a property is really fairly listed, accept and acknowledge that, or you aren’t being fair to yourself and your goals. Which leads me to the key question I always ask my client at about this time. What is your goal? Wanting to own a property is a very different idea than wanting a property if you can get it for your price. And knowing what you are comfortable with is so important. Spend some time being intellectually honest with yourself. It will be well worth the effort. I am a firm believer in the old saying “do unto others as you would have others do unto you.” And I also believe that if one side kills the other in a transaction it isn’t a good one. Sometimes that happens despite good will and good faith. And there is nothing wrong with that if circumstances lead in that direction. But do know that no one likes to feel they are being taken advantage of or have a knee on their neck. The best deals are where both sides walk away happy. The best advice I can give is to find a good broker — a student of the market — someone you think gets it, and then put your heads together to get this transaction done. I am of the belief two good heads are better then one.

Harvey Blaustein lives in Taos, is a real estate broker and used to be a practicing attorney.

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Time TO TaKe a baTh STORY, phOTOS and hOme deSign bY ViShu magee

if beauty, sensuality and a sense of well-being are important to you, then it’s time to take a bath. Magazines love to feature fantasy baths that look a lot like full-on spas. But before you rush to buy a roomful of fancy fixtures, take a closer look at what the bath is really about.

beautiful Let’s face it: all of us want to make the most of our physical appearance – and for this the bathroom definitely takes center stage. This is where we deploy countless products to enhance teeth, skin and hair. We spend an hour or more a day performing our morning ablutions and bedtime ritual. We make pit stops all day long, and we tune up before social engagements. Feeling beautiful is every bit as important as looking beautiful — so it’s important to pay attention to the space itself. Lighting is a good example: no amount of make-up or hair styling is going to look good under bad light. Mirrors are equally powerful — and not just because they can make us look trim. They reflect light in ways that inject a touch of glamour and make the room feel bigger than it actually is. There’s a good deal of smoke and mirrors in bath design! Color is important, too: we’ll feel more attractive in a room where the tile, the towels and the plaster complement our skin, hair color and clothing.

healthy Feeling beautiful is just half a step from feeling healthy — and in fact most home “health care” takes place in the bathroom. A simple trick is to emphasize the upbeat aspects of health — being fit, trim, and vibrant — while attending quietly to the more dreary aspects of body maintenance. That’s why health and beauty products are designed to be seen while packs of toilet paper are not.

Top Left: The tub was selected for comfort and placed for a view of Taos Mountain, while the plaster was tinted to the owner’s favorite color. Top Right: This walk-in shower has natural light and plenty of room for a bench and a personal shower system. Bottom Left: A simple candle in the nicho of this natural stone shower sets a special tone. Bottom Right: The arch to this Sag Harbor shower frames the elegant Ming tilework and conceals the shower curtain rod. A window provides fresh air, natural light, and a view of the adjacent cove.

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Bathing is fundamentally about rejuvenation — and there’s nothing quite as refreshing as water. Water has to be pure, it has to run at a steady temperature, and there has to be plenty of it. It’s well worth investing extra time and money to find the perfect shower valve and head, and to complement them with beautiful tile work. A lot of bathroom activity is considerably less appealing: medications, Band-Aids and very personal accessories are best stashed behind cabinet doors while still being readily accessible. Yet we have to use these items effectively, and well-placed mirrors, task lighting and a bench or two can make all the difference for shaving, nail clipping and close-up work.

activities in our day, and they should be as pleasurable as possible. A simple candle in front of a mirror can ignite a romantic or spiritual experience.

the sensory experience. Improved window glazing and Solatubes for overhead light have brought natural lighting in line with heating and cooling needs.

Soft surfaces are the obvious complement to relaxing water — but ambient temperature and radiant heat in the floors are what make for real comfort. Faucets, hardware and towels should be selected for touch just as much as for the visuals — and, as always, mirrors and lighting complete the magic. Most overlooked is the sense of smell: ventilation to remove odors, soaps and oils to perfume the air, and flowers, plants and candles to achieve both.

What’s New

The Green Bath

At the same time, walk-in showers are spa-like spaces that may include benches, multiple showerheads, skylights and windows — a far cry from the dank 3-by3-foot shower stall with its weak light and dingy door.


Guilt-free pleasure is a wonderful thing, and energy-or water-saving devices can actually enhance your bathroom experience. It begins with whole house carbon filtration that delivers pure water without salt softening, it continues with solar water heating or EnergyStar water heaters, and it ends with showerheads that make the most of lower flow rates so that you can consume less and luxuriate more.

Sex may end in the bedroom, but it often begins in the bath. Washing, shaving, grooming, dressing, and applying makeup — these are some of the most sensual

Natural stone tiles have exploded onto the market in recent years, competing costeffectively with conventional materials and contributing to both indoor air quality and

The humble toilet deserves its due. The last fixture to have found its way indoors, it’s still best when tucked away in a separate room or masked behind a half-height partition. Be sure to add good lighting, fresh air, and easy access — here it’s all about function, and a good flush counts for a lot more than flashy design.

Two innovations have changed the form and function of many bathrooms in the last 20 years. The hot tub takes the experience of luxuriating in hot water outdoors, creating a more sensual inflection to the bath. This has also created a little more space for the second lav that’s become standard in most master bathrooms.

There’s no end to the bells-and-whistles sold in showrooms and catalogs. Some of them are worth buying – but even these will perform better if you pay attention to the underlying principles that make the bath really zing. Vishu Magee has designed homes in Taos since 1973 and may be reached at

Top: Everything about this bath is playful: a two-way fireplace to the bedroom, an island soaking tub, and contemporary styling take it beyond what we think of as “bathroom.” A walk-in closet is off to the side behind double pocket doors.

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575-751-0013 Office 575-770-0655 Cell EXIT ENCHANTED REALTY 7276 Highway 518 Ranchos de Taos, NM 87557

751-0275 Fax

Ted Terry Associate Broker

New Listing. Gorgeous 3bed/3bath home on 3.87 acres with unparalelled frontage on the Rio Pueblo. You’ ll love living in this awesome adobe built by Cadillac Builders. This home is graced with Saltillo tile throughout its open airy floor plan. Located in a quiet neighborhood with Taos Pueblo as the western border. 2246 square feet and a two car attached garage. Enjoy our beautiful sunsets this summer from this one of a kind home in a one of a place location. Home furnishings and additional land available. $650,000.


Lower Des Montes - 2.00 acres on Hondo Seco Road. Ready for your new home and priced to sell. MLS# 92118/$108,000.00

Dona Ana Drive - Reserved development rights for up to 6 condominiums. Next to the southside spa. MLS# 87103 Price reduced to $150,000.00. Only $25,000 per site.Owner/Broker


New Listing Los Cordovas Road - 1.00 acre, buyer’s choice of the top or bottom of this 2.76 acre tract. All utilities except water in the road. Residential or commercial with a SUP. #MLS 94166, 94167 and 92576. From $27,000


Lower Des Montes - 4.08 acres with over the top views Vista Miguel Lot 1 - 2.01 acres. Contiguous to the golf Country Club Lot 63 - 3.00 acres on Baird Drive. Still course, electric, phone and well share included. the lowest priced country club lot. and vey secluded building sites in the pinon and juniper. MLS#87241/$65,000.00 MLS# 81675/$79,000.00 Owner/Broker This tract may be divided and there is more acreage available. MLS # 92122/$135,000.00

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Bino Martinez 575-770-5600

Now is the time to list your home! Give us a call Today!

EXIT ENCHANTED REALTY 7276 Highway 518 Ranchos de Taos, NM 87557 Office (575) 751-0013 Fax (575) 751-0275 STAKEOUT AREA


Spacious two story, 3bd/3.5ba home on 4.0 Acres. Huge kitchen/dining area. Great views from all areas of home. Lots of extra room and amenities to enjoy. Sets your sites on this one for only $397,500.

$397,500 QUESTA


Sold “As Is”- 3bd/2ba with open kitchen/living room area, large bedrooms, and an oversized garage. Situated in the Village of Questa.

Offered for $129,000 CIMMARON

MLS# 92693

The circa 1910-era commercial building is wood-heated, made of stone, has ample city parking with private parking in back. 2600 sf of retail/gallery space w/same size studio area. Renovated upstairs apartment.

Offered for $895,000 MORA Taos Custom Adobe


MLS# 94340

Great office space with highway frontage! Approx. 4116 sq.ft. Plenty of options for any necessary conversions. Large lobby with ample office space and cubicles.

Offered for $487,300

MLS# 93173

Spacious 2828-sq ft 3-bed/2-bath adobe home with custom features thoughout, including hand-crafted cabinets and granite countertops. Large RV parking area in back. 1.41-ac property includes irrigation water rights.


Offered for $549,500


Perfect Home Office Location


Large home with many extras. 4bds/2.5ba, 5 car carport, with upstairs currently being used as beauty salon. Lots of room for the price.

Only $258,300

MLS# 91886

Great location for a live-in Home Office. 3-bed/2-bath with1675-sq ft on busy 0.45-ac corner lot near center of town. One bedroom with separate entrance would make a perfect office for meeting clients.


Des Montes

Quaint And Affordable

MLS# 94169

Spacious 3-bed/2-bath 2000+ sq ft home with spectacular wraparound porch and outdoor living area in prestigious Taos community of Des Montes near Arroyo Seco. Includes a large workshop, 3-room exterior shed/pantry, and a small barn.


MLS# 91887

Wide open views welcome you at this 3-bed/2-bath cozy 1346-sq ft home. 1-acre lot is on paved County road for easy year round access. Large windows let lots of natural light and warmth in.


Lots and Land Parcels Perfect building lots with most utilities nearby: • MLS# 82853 – 1.83-ac in Taos Canyon $49,900 • MLS# 91581 – 1.24-ac in Vista Linda $59,000 • MLS# 93078 – 2.44-ac on Camino Mondragon $125,000 • MLS# 94577, #94576 – two 1.25 ac in Vista Linda ea. $50,000 • MLS# 91852, #91853 – two 1.0 ac in Talpa ea. $48,000 Manufactured homes okay on these lots:

MLS# 94038

Older territorial style 3bd/1.5ba home in a country setting. Pasture land surrounds the area with a quaint in town setting.

Offered for $128,280

Brian Stenum 575-779-1498

• MLS# 94275 – 0.85-ac off Hwy 68 in Ranchos de Taos $47,500 • MLS# 94276 – 0.85-ac off Hwy 68 in Ranchos de Taos $47,500 Angel Fire multi-family lot near the ski area: • MLS# 93002 – 1.24-ac in Angel Fire $79,000

Red Arrow Emporium: Transforming homes ‘from drab to fab’ by ANDy DENNISON PHOTOS cOurTESy Of DAlTIlE


alk into Red Arrow Emporium for the first time and be overwhelmed. There’s hardly a spot among the store’s 3,500 square feet that isn’t filled with furnishings, artwork and accessories for every corner of the home.

But, more behind the scenes and tucked into a small room off the main showroom, is another comprehensive business — a full design center — that can create the platform onto which many of Red Arrow Emporium’s offerings can reside. “We started in south Florida installing flooring and carpeting,” said Phyllis Tutor Molineux, who runs the store at 1302 Paseo del Pueblo Norte with husband David and daughter Myca Waterson. “Over time we evolved with antiques and furnishings to remodeling and full-service design.” For kitchens and baths, the Molineuxes like to start from scratch — and that means figuring out what a customer wants and needs. They go into a house and begin from the ground up —“from drab to fab” is one way they like to put it. “Often, customers come in with no idea of what they want, besides a picture of something or a sense or feel of what they want their room to be,” Phyllis said. “It’s our job to guide people to what their taste is, get them to discover their own style, rather than putting our own taste upon them.” Center to their ability to “guide” customers is the family’s knowledge of the products they carry. Every kitchen and bath relies upon flooring, walls and countertops to anchor its design, and the family stays on top of what’s new and trending in those industries. “Somehow, all our lives, we’ve known what the next big thing is going to be,” said Phyllis. “For instance, we figured that magenta and fuchsia would the be colors for 2014, and they are.” Perhaps it’s because their two families have a total of 14 working artists in the clan. David’s father painted a portrait of Gen. Douglas MacArthur and, for much of her adult life, Phyllis has been a fulltime glass artist. Son Skye operates six imported furniture stores in Florida and the Bahamas, and the family regularly attends the top furnishing shows in the nation. “It typically takes a new product about a year to hit the market, but we get it early because of our instincts and connections,” Phyllis said. So what does Phyllis see as new in materials that you find in contemporary kitchens and baths?

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• Ceramics and porcelain flooring now come looking just as authentic as laminate wood, yet remains highly durable and easy to clean. • More people want carpet in their bedroom for the comfort underfoot. • Barn wood siding, particularly popular around fireplaces, now comes with information on its source. • The “industrial chic” look, such as Chesterfield sofas, is found more and more to blend a factory look with a contemporary or classic setting. • Cultured (manufactured) stone have moved inside to become popular for walls, splashguards and other accents. • Grout that is the same color as the tile is making a move into many kitchens and baths. Of course, some designs don’t go out of style, Phyllis said, such as granite or marble countertops. “It’s surprising how much design sticks around and never seems to go out of style,” she said. In Taos since 1998, the Tutor Molineux family has developed a sensibility for what fits in Northern New Mexico. As with the cultural mix around Taos, the styles that find their way into homes is a mixture. “Taos defines its own blend,” Phyllis said. “It’s a combination of old, contemporary, Southwest, natural, earthy. In a way, it’s quality in a classic sense. Cabins, adobes, terrestrial — we adapt to the style of the location.” Key to thriving in the Taos market is pricing, she said, because the market isn’t as high end as Florida or California. That means searching out quality that can be priced for everyone, Phyllis said. Phyllis believes the Taos home design market is turning around, especially the stalwart second-home market that has bulwarked real estate in this area for a long time. “The pulse feels like it’s changing,” she said, “and that’s good for everyone.” Red Arrow Emporium 1302 Paseo del Pueblo Norte (575) 758-0540; search, Red Arrow Emporium

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“Ceramics and porcelain flooring now come looking just as authentic as laminate wood”

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To Costilla & Colorado

El Norte




To Tres Piedras & Chama








Taos Pueblo


Taos Municipal Airport








Kit Carson Park



Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial
















Taos RANCHOS DE TAOS Country Club

Taos Visitors Center


STAKEOUT AREA To Santa Fé & Albuquerque

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To Pot Creek & Las Vegas

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Get to Know the enchanted circle

The Enchanted Circle encompasses Taos, Angel Fire, Eagle Nest, Red River and Questa. Known for its magnificent scenery and outdoor activities, the Enchanted Circle makes an outstanding day trip. Drive time is approximately 3 1/2 hours, but make plans for frequent stops along the way. It’s worth the extra time to discover the hidden treasures of Northern New Mexico.

Town of Taos

Taos CounTry CluB, sTakeouT area

Taos Plaza rests at the heart of the historic district, surrounded by shops, galleries and restaurants within easy walking distance, in the midst of quiet residential areas. It has a relatively flat landscape filled with cottonwood trees. Average home sale price: $233,704

BlueBerry Hill

A relatively new area of development with broad expanses of land affording unbroken mountain views, as well as the piñon-and-juniper covered “Outlaw Hill,” where Old West outlaws hid out from the law. Average home sale price: $413,250

ranCHos de Taos, Talpa, llano QueMado

An area of sagebrush mesas which is becoming an increasingly popular area for houses. Average home sale price: $308,477

upper las Colonias A varied area of sagebrush and juniper, with easy access to the town of Taos and affordable home options. Average home sale price: $207,807

arroyo Hondo, Hondo Mesa A village of old adobes and other dwellings along the Río Hondo, with a rolling high desert mesa stretching toward the Río Grande Gorge. Includes popular fishing spots, as well as the historic John Dunn Bridge. Arroyo Hondo average home sale price: $112,000 Hondo Mesa average home sale price: $167,000

arroyo seCo, el salTo, des MonTes Arroyo Seco is a picturesque village of galleries, shops and cafes, surrounded by the beautiful landscape and gorgeous views of the mountains. El Salto and Des Montes have rolling terrain with orchards and ranches. Arroyo Seco average home sale price: $318,100 El Salto average home sale price: $468,500 Des Montes average home sale price: $378,213

Taos ski Valley, Valdez Taos Ski Valley is world-renowned with both national and international clientele. Most of the businesses are open yearround for outdoor enthusiasts of every season. Valdez sits at the foot of the canyon accessing Taos Ski Valley, providing high-altitude living amidst woodlands and valleys along the Río Hondo. TSV average home sale price: $293,910 Valdez average home sale price: $435,000

Taos Canyon, Cañón This area is replete with hiking trails and campgrounds. Picturesque views of the mountainsides and the Rio Fernando combine to form a lush, green landscape. Taos Canyon average home sale price: $216,667 Cañón average home sale price: $424,333

Home of the most photographed church in the country (San Francisco de Asís), Ranchos de Taos is accented with quaint adobe structures, galleries and shops. High terrain and ridges afford views of the Río Grande Gorge and mountains. Ranchos de Taos average home sale price: $150,683 Talpa average home sale price: $241,083 Llano Quemado average home sale price: $213,800

weiMer fooTHills An upscale neighborhood of rolling hills which is growing in popularity. It is close to schools, Holy Cross Hospital and the Taos Youth and Family Center. Building restrictions keep mountain and foothill views relatively unbroken. Average home sale price: $406,694

el prado, ranCHiTos, CórdoVas El Prado is comprised of meadows and ranch lands with small shops, cafes and other businesses along the highway. Ranchitos and Los Córdovas are similar but more residential. All have excellent views of Taos Mountain. El Prado average home sale price: $325,173 Lower Ranchitos average home sale price: $340,000 Upper Ranchitos Average home sale price: N/A Córdovas average home sale price: $310,000

angel fire Cradled in the beautiful Moreno Valley, Angel Fire is a favorite destination for skiers in the winter and golfers, hikers and music lovers in the summer. Angel Fire is the fastest growing municipality in New Mexico. Average home sale price: $292,632

red riVer This historic ski town invites visitors to explore its wild west history along with their many shops and restaurants. Surrounded by the Carson National Forest, the village rests in a valley, with the Red River running through it. Average home sale price: $251,4967

Information was provided by Jim Kimmons of Gallery Realty ( and DISCLAIMER: Statistics are based on MLS information for the period January 1, 2012 through December 31, 2012. Neither the REALTORS® Association of New Mexico nor the Taos County Association of REALTORS® guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy. Data is maintained by the Taos County Association of REALTORS® and may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.

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Merging sculpture with Woodworker Dean Pulver seeks cabinetry art that is functional


sk Dean Pulver to describe his cabinetry, and the answer might mistaken him for a sculptor rather than a woodworker.

He talks of “flow,” “curved faces” and “texturing.” A cruise through his website reveals seats, tables and cases that could stand as easy in an art gallery, as much as in a kitchen or living room. He speaks of types of wood in terms of their “warmth” or “image.” “My style? I guess primitive is one description,” said Pulver, who lives with ceramic artist and printmaker Abby Salsbury a couple of miles north on Tune Road. “With a contemporary sculpture background, there’s always art history in there, of African art and modern sculpture.” As an example, Pulver explained that he sees furniture and cabinetry as a sign of status, as it is in Africa. Therefore, he uses solid hardwoods for a cabinet’s innards rather than plywood, because it’s a sign of social standing. “I like to build my chairs as if they’re for the chief of the tribe,” he said. A Minnesota native, he comes from a family of artists who made a living at it so, Pulver, 50, considers himself as much a sculptor of

wood as a fabricator of furniture and cabinetry. “I’m always trying to invent new ways to build things,” he said. “With cabinets, I see them as boxes on the inside that look interesting on the outside. That’s the non-traditional layout of my work, the curved faces and poles. Things flow.” Early on in life, Pulver thought he might be a computer guy, what with his head for math and engineering. But, somewhere along the way, Pulver became intrigued with a challenge: How could you make something functional with a fine art design? After graduating in sculpture from Philadelphia College of Art in the 1980s, he and Salsbury moved to Western Massachusetts – a mecca of fine woodworkers. There, he found his medium. “Wood was a medium with which people could interact,” Pulver said. “You should touch it, feel its texture and grain, as opposed to no-touch sculpture of other materials. I liked that.” Immersed among other craftsman, Pulver built a “cultural toolbox” and skill set that has guided his work ever since. He learned Asian, African, Shaker, Arts and Crafts styles. He began to construct his own creative voice and style. Working in wood “brought the outdoors indoors,” he said,

Town of Taos Community Profile The 5.4 square miles of the incorporated town of Taos spreads beneath the shadow of Pueblo Peak (12,305 feet), bounded roughly by the Río Lucero on the north and Río Grande de Ranchos on the south. At 7,000 feet in elevation, Taos experiences winter lows in the single digits and summer highs in the low-90s. Long isolated from the outside world, Taos began to grow in the 1960s with an influx of hippies to nearby communes, and continues to this day with young ski bums, rafters and older retirees. Commercial activity centers on the plaza area and along north and south ends of Paseo del Pueblo, the main thoroughfare. A popular home for Southwest artists, Taos boasts dozens of galleries, boutiques and craft shops — plus renowned studio tours, and art and crafts festivals. Dozens of restaurants serve up all variety of cuisine; the Northern New Mexico red-sauce dishes are renowned. Just south of town sits St. Francis de Asís Catholic Church, reputed to be the most-photographed church in America. The Catholic influence can be seen in the cemeteries, roadside descansos, and neighborhood churches. Taos is home to the county government and district

courts. The U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management have a strong presence in town. On the outskirts of town, pastures, fields and gardens are irrigated by ancestral acequias extending from the rivers and streams.

North Central Regional Transit District: regional service, (505) 629-4725, Taos Regional Airport: general aviation (575) 758-4995,

HealtH serviCes


Holy Cross Hospital (575) 758-8883,

Estimated Taos 2011: 5,713 Source: UNM Bureau of Business and Economic Research

Taos Urgent Care (575) 751-1006

PubliC reCreation faCilities General: Taos Youth and Family Center, www., (575) 758-4160, with game room, video games, swimming pool, ice rink; Fred Baca Park, Kit Carson Park

Taos VA Clinic (575) 751-0328

Hiking/Biking: Carson National Forest, www., (575) 758-6200; Bureau of Land Management, Taos Field Office, (575) 7588851; Ute Mountain and Rio Grande del Norte National Conservation Area; popular trails include Devisadero Loop, South Boundary Trail, Rim Trail.

Tri-County Community Services (mental health) (575) 758-1125

Athletics: Taos Eco-Park (soccer, lacrosse)

Santa Fe: 70 miles Albuquerque: 131 miles Denver: 287 miles Dallas: 674 miles Phoenix: 595 miles

Mountain Home Health Care (575) 758-4786,

Taos Women’s Health Institute (575) 751-0334,

Driving DistanCes

PubliC transPortation Chile Line: local and area service, (575) 751-4459,

Current Happenings in Taos Real Estate

of Taos

RE/MAX sells 1 home every 42 seconds!

Each Office Independently Owned & Operated

723 Paseo del Pueblo Sur Taos, New Mexico 87571 575-758-5400 866-737-5400

Linda Valaika, Owner/Broker

COMPARISON OF 2012 - 2013 REAL ESTATE ACTIVITY January 1, 2013 - December 31, 2013 2013 2012 % of change Residential Sold Properties Average Sold Price Volume Sold Land Sold Properties Average Sold Price Volume Sold Multi-Family Sold Properties Average Sold Price Volume Sold Commercial Sold Properties Average Sold Price Volume Sold

CURRENT REAL ESTATE ACTIVITY 233 $486,754 $113,413,898

195 312,500 60,952,257

172 268,727 46,221,105

13% 16% 32%

Current Residential Properties Average Listed Price Volume

63 118,855 7,487,895

40 109,487 4,379,500

58% .09% 71%

Current Land Listings Average Listed Price Volume

3 178,466 535,400

2 428,750 857,500


Current Multi-Family Listing Average Listed Price Volume

6 $480,333 $2,882,000

8 417,250 3,338,000

7 517,728 3,624,100

-14% -19% -8%

Current Commercial Listings Average Listed Price Volume

38 $631,268 $23,998,200

291 $174,423 $50,757,356

RATES ARE GOING UP. TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THESE RATES WHILE YOU STILL CAN Fixed Interest Rates Monthly Payment* $100,000 $506.69 30 year Fixed Rate 4.5% $100,000 $727.23 15 year Fixed Rate 3.75% Adjustable Interest Rates 7 year ARM




*Rates quoted represent average rates without points and vary depending on credit score, loan size, and loan to value.

These statistics were obtained through data available from Taos County Board of Realtors. Rates provided courtesy of Wells Fargo Mortgage.

Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

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Your Taos Ski Valley Specialist!

TAOS SKI VALLEY Community Profile

Residential Property Tax: 17.875 mills

Taos Ski Valley sits at the head of the Río Hondo Canyon, surrounded by Carson National Forest in what is known as the La Cal Basin. The state’s highest peak, Wheeler Peak (13,167), rises to the east, and the ridge off Kachina Peak (12,481) sets the western boundary. The climate is montane and alpine, with winter lows below zero and summer highs in the 70s.

Sources: UNM Bureau of Business & Economic Research; Taos County Assessor’s Office

The economy of the area is dominated by Taos Ski Valley, a world-class winter sports mountain that is known for its steep trails and an average of 300 inches of snowfall. The basin first attracted settlement when gold and copper were discovered in the early 1900s. Ski valley founder Ernie Blake put up the first ski lift in 1956 and, to this day, the resort is owned by the Blake family. The base area, at 9,200 feet elevation, includes day and overnight facilities. The mountain has 14 lifts and 110 trails, with a vertical drop of 2,612 feet. Typically, about 250,000 skiers and snowboarders (admitted in 2010) hit the slopes every year. Other winter activities include snowmobiling, snowshoeing, cross-country and back-country skiing, and tubing. In the summer, the main chairlift takes hikers, mountain bikers and sightseers to midmountain. The Village of Taos Ski Valley, incorporated in 1996, encompasses 2.3 square miles in the valley and administers municipal services, such as water, sewer and police.

PoPulation Estimated Taos Ski Valley 2011: 69 year-round; up to 4,000 seasonal (winter) Source: Village of Taos Ski Valley Master Plan

taxes Gross Receipts Tax Rate: 8.6875% Lodgers Tax Rate: 5%

PubliC reCreation faCilities Hiking/Mountain Biking/X-C: Carson National Forest,, (575) 758-6200; popular trails include Williams Lake Trail, Bull ‘O The Woods Trail, Gold Hill Trail, Yerba Canyon Trail, Gavilan Canyon Trail Fishing: Río Hondo, Lake Fork

form of Government Mayor and four-member village council, staggered four-year terms; village administrator

PubliC transPortation Taos Chile Line (Winter Only) (575) 751-4459 Taos Express (Winter Only) (575) 751-4459

st. moritz condominiums

Luxurious nEW condos in taos ski vaLLEy! Beautiful architecture featuring scenic balconies with OUTSTANDING VIEWS. Most attractive building in neighborhood that makes the neighbors property look better. GREAT LOCATION! Just two minutes from the slopes, shops, restaurants and other establishments; but also TUCKED AWAY from the hustle and bustle. Quality construction with granite counter tops, travertine tiles, beautiful stone work, custom cabinets and gas fireplaces. Low HOA dues makes this new project very attractive. Special pricing on two units. MLS# 91263..........Unit 101 ............$349,000 .................1Br MLS# 91264..........Unit 102 ............$349,000 .................1Br MLS# 91266..........Unit 201 ............$449,000 .................2Br MLS# 91267..........Unit 202 ............$419,000 .................2Br MLS# 91269..........Unit 301 ............$449,000 .................2Br MLS# 91268..........Unit 302 ............$439,000 .................2Br MLS# 91270..........Unit 402 ............$409,000 .................1Br MLS# 91271..........Unit 401 ............$399,000 .................1Br

TSV daily shuttle to Santa Fe and Albuquerque airports, (800) 776-1111 (Winter Only)

HealtH serviCes Mogul Medical Urgent Care Open during ski season only, (575) 776-8421

DrivinG DistanCes Taos: 19 miles Santa Fe: 87 miles Albuquerque: 149 miles Denver: 297 miles Oklahoma City: 543 miles Dallas: 693 miles

Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV • Keith Dowell, Qualifying Broker (575) 776.0600

60 • All properties can be found at

Red RiveR Community Profile

riding on horses is a popular summer activity.

The town of Red River nestles along the Red River, a mountain tributary to the Río Grande. The settlement sits at 8,750 feet elevation, surrounded by Carson National Forest and the Sangre de Cristo mountains. The climate is montane and alpine, with winter lows below zero and summer highs in the 70s. Thunderstorms often roll through on summer afternoons.

The town of Red River administers municipal services for residents, visitors and nearly 200 businesses in the community. The town hosts a number of popular summertime events, beginning with the Memorial Day Motorcycle Rally that typically attracts more than 20,000 motorcyclists for the long weekend.

Gold miners in the mid-1800s first settled the area. These days, the local economy relies upon winter tourists who come to ski and snowboard, and summer tourists who come to hike, mountain bike, drive ATVs and relax in the cool temperatures. Some 1,200 seasonal homes house many of these visitors. Red River Ski Area rises to the south of town with a vertical drop of 1,600 feet. The mountain includes 58 trails and six lifts on 290 acres, and typically attracts more than 120,000 ticketbuyers in a winter season. In the summer, lifts run for mountain bikers, hikers and sightseers.

Estimated 2011: 477 year-round; approx. 4,000 seasonal

For a fee, wintertime enthusiasts can explore the 21 miles of groomed skiing and snowshoeing trails at Enchanted Forest Cross Country and Snowshoe Area, located three miles east of town. In town, private rental services lease out snowmobiles, ATVs, Jeeps and trail Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

PoPulation Sources: UNM Bureau of Business and Economic Research; Red River Comprehensive Plan

PubliC transPortation Red River Miner’s Transit: free year-round service, with door-to-door service,, (575) 770-5959; town-operated heliport

Driving DistanCes Taos: 36 miles Santa Fe: 106 miles Albuquerque: 165 miles Denver: 275 miles Dallas: 648 miles Oklahoma City: 511 miles

61 • All properties can be found at

Put your homeownership goals in experienced hands Contact your local home mortgage consultant today!

Stacy Joel Hunsaker 575-751-1874 NMLSR ID 442526

Wells Fargo Home Mortgage is a division of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. © 2012 Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. All rights reserved. NMLSR ID 399801. AS998474 Expires 12/2013

Angel Fire Community Profile

Angel Fire is located at an elevation of 8,382 feet above sea level in the high Moreno Valley of Colfax County. The climate mirrors the Rocky Mountain setting that includes some of the highest peaks in New Mexico. About 210 inches of snow typically fall on Angel Fire in the winter, and average temperatures range between zero and 30 degrees F. Summertime highs rarely exceed 80 degrees F., with frequent afternoon thunderstorms that cool off midday temperatures. Surrounded by U.S. National Forest and private ranches, the incorporated Village of Angel Fire covers 18,450 acres. The village includes the general aviation Colfax County Airport and the Angel Fire Ski & Golf Resort, a private membership community overseen by the Association of Angel Fire Property Owners. The resort includes more than a thousand private homes, a 500-acre ski and snowboard mountain, a championship golf course, country club, fishing lake and other amenities for member-landowners. Non-members can pay to use most resort facilities. A favored hunting ground for the Utes, the Moreno Valley grew in the 1860s with the discovery of gold. Ranching dominated the local scene until the 1960s, when the first ski runs of Angel Fire

Resort were cut on Aqua Fria Peak. Tourism fuels the local economy, although several large working ranches still operate in the area.

Courtesy Angel Fire Resot/Ryan Heffernan

Angel Fire

Melissa J. Naylor 575-751-4208 NMLSR ID 424842

Trails; Oeste Vista; Lake and Lady Slipper Trails


Fishing: Eagle Nest Lake State Park, (575) 377-1594; Cimarrón State Park, (575) 377-6271; Valle Vidal

Estimated 2011: 1,204 year-round; approx. 2,000 summer

Athletics: Angel Fire Sports Complex – soccer, softball, rugby

Source: UNM Bureau of Business & Economic Research; local Realtors

form of Government

taxes Gross Receipts Tax: 7.4375% Lodger’s Tax: 5% Sports & Recreation Fee: 2.4% Average Colfax County Property Tax: 7.69 mills Source: N.M. Dept. of Revenue

sChools Cimarrón Municipal School District: Cimarrón Elementary/Middle School; Eagle Nest Elementary/Middle School; Cimarrón High School; Moreno Valley High School

PubliC reCreation faCilities Hiking/Biking/Snowmobiling: Carson National Forest,, (575) 758-6200; Cimarrón State Park, (575) 377-6271; Valle Vidal; popular trails including Sendoro and Bobcat Trails; Elliott Barker Trail Complex; Greenbelt

Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

Village Council with four members and mayor, four-year, staggered terms:

PubliC transPortation None

health serviCes Moreno Valley Health Care Clinic 11 Elliott Barker Road No. A (575) 377-3301 UltiMed Clinic Ski Patrol Building Angel Fire Ski Resort (open in winter only) (575) 377-1805

DrivinG DistanCes Santa Fe: 92 miles Albuquerque: 154 miles Denver: 295 miles Dallas: 659 miles

62 • All properties can be found at

Harvey Blaustein 575-770-2220

603 Camino de la Placita Taos, NM 87571 575.737.5678

Magnificent Ski In Ski Out Condo… We proudly offer a custom designed condo in the Edelweiss Lodge and Spa in the Taos Ski Valley, featuring a spacious, 3 bedroom, 3 bath, 3rdfloor condo on the mountain with incredible views and a lock off feature. Turn key. $900,000 mls 93863

Prime Commercial…

On the main drag thru town, on the south side where the traffic count is high, we proudly offer a commercial property with highway frontage. Set on .65 acres, there are 3 free standing buildings in a condominium ownership structure. Options in business are a good thing. $599,000 mls 93993

A Turn Key Business…

We proudly offer Poco Loco, the only grocery store in Carson, a turn key operation and a business that makes money. Situated directly across the road from the post office, everyone passes by Poco Loco. Buy land, building and business for $279K plus inventory. $279,000 mls 93978

Prime Development Property…

Just three short blocks from the plaza, we proudly offer one of the best remaining undeveloped parcels of land in town, 4.89 acres, with great options and even better opportunity. Zoned CBD and R-4, this has location, location, location. $499,000 mls 93851

Great Condo Site with Final Approvals…

Within the Town of Taos, we proudly offer this 4.69 acre site zoned R-14, ready to go. Final approval for a 78-unit PUD project of condos, from studios to 3 bedrooms, is in place and is ready for the new owner. The location is stellar, the time is right, and the project grounded in the market. $529,000 mls 93146

“We get things done on time every time. It’s important to us.” Harvey Blaustein, Qualifying Broker Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

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Enchanted Homes Vol. XCV •

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Enchanted Homes Feb/March 2014  

In this issue of Enchanted Homes, we take an expansive view of kitchens and bathrooms from many angles: design, structure, accessories and m...