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The Five-Point Weekend Escape Plan

Pedal Your Way Through Albuquerque

With miles of trails, food-focused cycling tours, and breweries and wineries accessible by bike, the best way to explore New Mexico’s biggest city is on two wheels.

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1. Where to Stay

The serene rooms at Los Poblanos come with free bikes to explore the on-premises farm and local vineyards.  

Wander amid fields of lavender and veggies at Los Poblanos (from $180), a 1932 Spanish-style inn surrounded by a 25-acre organic garden. Opt to stay in one of 20 rooms at the main building, appointed with New Mexico antiques, original artwork (including WPA New Mexican pieces and R.C. Gorman lithographs), carved ceiling beams, and kiva fireplaces. Or choose one of the airy rooms in what’s known as the Farm—a row of wooden cottages with pitched tin roofs that made up the 1930s dairy. The property’s bounty goes into house-made lavender salve and other products sold in the on-site Farm Shop, and onto the menu at La Merienda, the hotel's terrific under-the-radar restaurant. Borrow a free cruiser bike for a jaunt past nearby wineries in the afternoon; then try out chef Jonathan Perno’s “Rio Grande Valley cuisine” for dinner—think spinach tagliatelle with red chiles and New Mexico piñon ($20) and a Rio Grande fritto misto with green chile pepper jelly, El Trigal Manchego, and local chevre ($15).

Head downtown to the 107-room Hotel Andaluz (from $149), debuted by New Mexico native Conrad Hilton in 1939. It reopened in 2009 with a $30 million boutique update and Moorish-inflected makeover, like the lobby’s courtyard fountain with “casbahs” underneath archways on each side. Even if you don’t stay in the Penthouse suite, where Hilton and Zsa Zsa Gabor checked in on their wedding night, your room will have Moulton Brown toiletries, Northern Canadian goose-down comforters, and a pillow menu with seven different options. To re-create some of that couple’s romance, grab a glass of sherry ($6-$14) at rooftop bar Ibiza, where private booths are sheltered by strands of vines. For dinner, nibble on Iberian bites at Mas, the hotel’s new tapas bar, where Spanish favorites include morcilla (blood sausage) with peppers ($12) and boquerones (white anchovies; $10).

Stay within a quick bike ride to Albuquerque’s Old Town at the 188-room Hotel Albuquerque (from $83). Decorated in Spanish colonial style (think tiles and iron chandeliers in the lobby) with a few Southwestern adobe touches, the property boasts a landscaped outdoor pool area surrounded by lounge chairs with views of the Sandia mountains. Grab a seat on the patio of the hotel’s outlet of local New-Mex favorite Garduños for lunch—try the margarita flight with flavors like strawberry-basil and green chile ($14), and the carne adovada (pork simmered with red chilies, $15.45). After a day cycling around the city, kick up your heels at Casa Esencia, a 1783 home that has been transformed into one of the city’s swankiest nightclubs, and is located right on the grounds (i.e., stumbling distance from your room).

Published on Jul 17, 2014 as a web exclusive.

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