You're looking for a resort that has mountains, perfect weather, plenty of activities to keep you busy, space to let you relax away from others, and a short drive from a major airport. Tough combination of requirements, right? Not really, if you head to the Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort and Spa outside Albuquerque, New Mexico!
The Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort is located approximately 30 minutes north of Albuquerque International Sunport and just to the northwest of the beautiful Cibola National Forest. The resort itself is in Santa Ana Pueblo and is 2.5 miles from the main highway. Given the distance from the highway, and the numerous restaurants, shops, and breweries in town, I recommend a rental car for your visit.
The Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort and Spa is a Category 3 Property, meaning it costs 12,000 Hyatt points per night. Standard suites are 20,000 per night, and premium suites are 24,000 per night. A points + cash booking costs 6,000 points and $75. To accumulate Hyatt points quickly, you can sign up for the World of Hyatt credit card, which currently offers up to 60,000 Hyatt points as a sign-up bonus ($95 annual fee), the World of Hyatt business credit card, which currently offers a 60,000 Hyatt points as a sign-up bonus ($199 annual fee) or the Chase Sapphire Preferred, the Chase Sapphire Reserve, or the Ink Business Preferred, Ink Business Cash, or Ink Business Unlimited.
Unlike most Hyatt Regency properties, this resort does not have an executive club. The agent that checked us in said the Club closed “about 6 years ago.” The resort has 5 restaurant options: the Santa Ana Grill, Rio Grande Lounge, Plaza Grill in the pool areas, Trading Post (the marketplace), and Atush Bar & Grille in the golf course clubhouse.
For activities, the resort has a championship golf course, 3 heated outdoor pools and a whirlpool, bicycles for adults and children, bike/walking paths, skiing, hot air balloon rides, horseback riding, a full-service spa, yoga classes, and a 24-hour gym.
In advance of arrival, the Hyatt app showed an upgrade to an executive suite. Once we arrived, we were told we were in a King Executive Mountainview Suite. The downside to this upgrade was that our room was not ready upon arrival (approximately 1:30 pm). We received keys to access the pool area and would receive a text when our room was ready. We ventured off in search of the pools and to wander the property.
Less than 2 hours later, our suite was ready and we were told our bags would arrive momentarily. Within 5 minutes of arrival, our bags arrived and the porter asked if we had any questions about our room. He was polite and very helpful, which was a theme for our quick stay.
Overall, our room was spectacular. Almost 800 square feet, with a full couch, kitchenette, large king bed, multiple flat screen TVs, and 2 private balconies with views of the nearly 11,000 foot mountains a few miles away. It was very peaceful and serene.
For our stay, cash prices were $360 (including taxes) for a standard room. As we used 12,000 Hyatt points, we got a 3.0 cents per point value. Our Executive Suite the following weekend (it was sold out for our dates) had a cash price of $850, so over 7 cents per point. Regardless of the cents per point (cpp) valuation, this Executive Suite (and any room at this resort) is definitely worth 12,000 Hyatt points per night.
As a Globalist, we received free valet parking, which was $18/night if not a Globalist. There was ample self parking located less than 150 yards from the front entrance and was free, so this did not seem like it was worth $18 per night if paying for it.
Also, thanks to Globalist status, we received free breakfast in the Santa Ana Cafe. There was an a la carte menu or a buffet. The buffet included coffee and juice. We opted for the buffet, which with tip totaled almost $55 for 2. Definitely not terrible for resort prices. We loved our breakfast. Along with the traditional breakfast fare, the buffet offered beans stewed with red and green chilies, fresh red salsa, roasted green chilies, and other traditional New Mexican fare. I highly recommend the buffet.
We did not have time to partake in many of the activities offered at the resort. We did spend time at the adults-only pool and explored the two other pools on property. The adults-only pool was crowded and has no shade whatsoever. Luckily, each chair comes with a foldable shade umbrella, so you can shield yourself a little bit. While the temperature was fairly mild for August (highs in the low 80s and lows in the upper 50s), the sun is brutal at over 5,200 feet in elevation.
During our stay, we watched folks play horseshoes and golf, run and walk on the trails and paths, and adults and children use the resort's bicycles on the various paths. The resort seemed busy, but there were plenty of bicycles for everyone and the paths did not seem crowded at all.
We also ate dinner at the Rio Grande Lounge, which has ample indoor and outdoor seating. We opted to sit outside and observe those gorgeous mountains. The menu had traditional “pub grub” and lots of New Mexican entrees as well. We opted to split brisket nachos with red and green chilies ($16) and it was more than enough food for two and quite delicious.
We used 12,000 Hyatt points per night to book a standard room and received an upgrade to an Executive Suite. We could have booked that Executive Suite directly for 20,000 Hyatt points per night. Honestly, if we return and don't have a Suite Upgrade Award to spare, I would use 20,000 Hyatt per night to book the Executive Suite directly. It is worth the extra points for 1) the extra space, 2) a mountain view, and 3) the two private balconies. As this was a points booking, we did not earn any points for our room.
Interestingly, we did earn Hyatt points on our food & beverage bill, which is calculated at 5x plus any elite bonuses (Globalist is a 30% bonus). While food & beverage charges are suppose to earn points, the Hyatt terms & conditions suggest this is not the case at all properties and alcohol purchases should never earn points. Earning points on these charges is always hit-or-miss.
At check out, we spotted various errors on our bill. First, the breakfast charges were not correctly subtracted from the final total, despite our Globalist status. Second, the bill showed that our stay was not an elite qualifying night and we were not receiving elite credit for it. While that is not important to some, it is very important for those chasing status or Hyatt's lucrative elite milestone rewards. Luckily, we resolved both issues quickly with an email to our Globalist concierge. If we did not have access to the Globalist concierge, we would have pointed these issues out during check out to get them fixed.
The Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort and Spa is a wonderful respite from real life. Hidden away from the main highway and the nearby town, you feel secluded and private. The weather in August was absolutely perfect, although the sun was intense, and the mountain views make for plentiful photo opportunities. We highly recommend this resort and cannot wait to return. It offers fantastic value for 12,000 Hyatt points per night in a regular room or 20,000 Hyatt points per night in an Executive Suite.
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