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Drury Plaza Hotel in Santa Fe Opens in August, 2014

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The first new hotel to receive guests in Santa Fe in 18 years is set to debut in August, 2014 when the Drury Plaza Hotel is scheduled to open its doors.

Santa Fe has very restrictive zoning regulations. The reason is John Gaw Meem -- a noted southwest architect who developed the Pueblo Revival Style so popular throughout New Mexico, and particularly Santa Fe and Albuquerque. But he was concerned that the distinctive charm of Santa Fe would be diluted, altered, perhaps even destroyed by newer designs. The result is that only two styles are permitted in Santa Fe -- Spanish-Pueblo, and Territorial. Even new buildings must be consistent in terms of materials, color, proportion, and overall detail.

Drury's solution is to renovate existing buildings.

According to their press material, five acres of dormant space the intersection of Palace Avenue and Paseo de Peralta will be transformed with pedestrian walkways and gardens. The former St. Vincent Hospital is being transformed into a full-service hotel with 182 rooms, a restaurant, a year-round, heated rooftop bar and pool with "stupendous views of the Sangre de Christo Mountains."

The site is adjacent to the beautiful St. Francis Cathedral, built by Archbishop Jean Baptiste Lamy between 1869 and 1886. The primary façade is from the 1950s St. Vincent’s Hospital and is an excellent example of late Territorial Revival style.

“Our intention is to preserve as much as history as possible,” says Tauseen Malik, General Manager, “including the beautiful mosaic flooring in the old cafeteria of Marian Hall, which opened in 1910.”

And yes, John Gaw Meem has a hand in designing that building -- it's also where he died in 1983.

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