Why Retire to Santa Fe, NM?

What makes Santa Fe one of the country's most popular places to retire? Is it the warm climate with its crystalline blue skies, magical high desert light and four gorgeous, easy-to-live-with seasons? Or the attractions of a cosmopolitan cultural life, including world class museums and galleries, the renowned Santa Fe Opera and other musical delights, over 200 restaurants and a year-round calendar chock-full of exhilarating cultural events like Indian and Spanish Markets? Perhaps it's the genuine diversity of people here, a fascinating mix of Native American, traditional Hispanic and "Anglo" cultural traditions.

There are probably as many reasons as people who choose the exquisite natural beauty and cultural vibrancy of Santa Fe as their retirement destination city. Plenty of locals will tell you that sometimes it's just plain impossible to resist the spell created by your very first visit to the celebrated Land of Enchantment. Their stories share a common happy ending of traveling through Santa Fe on their way to somewhere else and never leaving.

If we have to age, we night as well do it in a place that supports healthy living. To begin with, the air in Santa Fe is a great antioxidant. Simply breathing here improves your quality of your life. Men's Health and Organic Style among many others have ranked Santa Fe one of the healthiest cities and best places to live. Get a cardio workout by riding your bike to the ski area or becoming a member at the numerous public and private health clubs around town. The Dale Ball Trails wind around the periphery of Santa Fe--one of the most popular among locals is Atalaya Trail above St. John's College.

As the city enters a yearlong celebration of its 400th anniversary, it continues a long tradition of charming newcomers from all over the world. From CNN's Money Magazine's "Best Places to Live" in 2008 to AARP Magazine's "One of the 15 Best Places in the Country to Re-Invent Yourself", Santa Fe routinely captures a spot on the lists of most desirable places to live.

Whether you're an artist or art aficionado, love to ride, hike, golf, ski or enjoy other outdoor pursuits, or prefer to simply putter around your own cozy hacienda, you'll soon discover why Santa Fe always lives up to its moniker, "The City Different." It's also the perfect location for those who seek a more holistic approach to wellness, with a first-rate regional medical center and an unrivalled range of modern facilities offering both traditional and alternative therapies. Retiring to Santa Fe is not 'switching off' or 'checking out' - it's reconnecting, with family, with self, with your surroundings. The diversity of opportunities in and around Santa Fe bring everything from golf to snowshoeing to pottery to the healing arts right to your doorstep.

A short diversion on golf, because it comes as a surprise to many that we have some fine courses within a 20 miles radius of Santa Fe. Here's a description of the Black Mesa course, just north of Santa Fe:

"Black Mesa is located on the Santa Clara Pueblo just north of Santa Fe, New Mexico, and the Native American roots of its land carries a unique history. This 18-hole course plays through dramatic sandstone ridges with Black Mesa visible from several locations. Offering a wide variety of holes, each with its own memorable features, the site showcases distinctive bunkering, native arroyos as hazards, and green contouring in keeping with the scale of the natural landforms."

Santa Feans both old and new agree that life--of the mind, body and spirit-- is indeed much sweeter here. It's a dream town that may just help you finally fulfill some of those long-held dreams of your own.

Whatever their original draw, people find that when they make the move here, they soon realize it was the best decision they ever made.

Frank O'Mahony is managing broker with Evolve Santa Fe Real Estate in Santa Fe, and formerly director of marketing for the State Economic Development Department. Evolve Santa Fe Real Estate 505.699.3985 frank@omahony.com
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