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“A wonderful experience”
Review of Touchstone Inn

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Touchstone Inn
Ranked #21 of 23 Taos B&B and Inns
Reviewed 29 June 2013

I have a very limited travel budget and don't get to take many trips, so choosing a place to spend my money on a rare opportunity to treat myself to a solo "retreat" to recharge and renew was a big decision for me. I stayed at Touchstone Inn for two nights and I'm SO glad I chose them out of the many B & Bs in Taos. I truly felt nourished and pampered while I was there. My room was cozy and clean, breakfast was absolutely DELICIOUS, and Amber and Brad are wonderful people - the real deal. They have an authenticity and kindness about them that can't be faked. I felt truly cared for by them, less like I was a guest at a business than reconnecting with long-lost family. The property itself is also inspiring and incredibly peaceful, with an outdoor walking labyrinth, a beautiful breakfast room, and a tangible sense of history and culture. Highly recommended for anyone who wants a genuine Taos experience and the sense of comfort, peace, and intimacy that a great B & B can offer.

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled solo
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1  Thank Mandy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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28 - 34 of 120 reviews

Reviewed 25 June 2013

I stayed five nights at Inn taking a workshop. My room had the trash taken out once during my visit per my request. My bedsheets were never changed nor room straightened. I bought paper towels for room because only paper available was toilet paper. The room had no AC and screen door could not be locked. The hosts were not only unwelcoming but downright hostile especially Brad. The size of room was adequate for two and closet space was generous. I see many favorable ratings for this Inn and am astounded. I rarely write reviews and this is my FIRST negative review. I would have ignored any problems with this place had the hosts been halfway pleasant. I think being nice takes care of a lot of inconsequential problems--too bad Brad and Amber haven't learned this lesson.

Room Tip: Request upper balcony
  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled with friends
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4  Thank suzis75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
worldwatchingwoman, Owner at Touchstone Inn, responded to this reviewResponded 31 January 2014

In a workshop environment the protocols set up between the presenter and the inn prevail - daily housekeeping, in the case of a workshop is an extra charge, of which this guest chose not to take advantage. Participants of workshops stay at a reduced room rate with the option to have housekeeping or not. It is unfortunate that this was not communicated by the presenter and I am sorry for the inconvenience this guest experienced. Clash of personalities often get in the way of a good inn experience and we apologize for any bad behavior experienced by you. .As owner, I assure you that we strive to make our guests welcome and well served; to that end, we now have new innkeepers and plans for new workshops on the horizon.

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Reviewed 17 June 2013

We just returned from a week long trip to Santa Fe and Taos, New Mexico. We spent four lovely nights at a B&B (Casa Cuma) in Santa Fe and then drove to Taos for the last three nights.

For the last three evenings of our trip we stayed at the Touchstone Inn in the D.H. Lawrence room. We have stayed at 16 B&B’s from Maine to Vancouver to Hawaii and have a lot of experience staying in different bed and breakfasts. There are 3 factors that make a B&B a wonderful place to stay on vacation. Those factors include the 1. beauty of the property/room; 2. friendliness/helpfulness of the hosts; 3. the quality of the breakfast. The Touchstone Inn failed to deliver on all three levels as I will describe below.

After reading the glowing reviews on TripAdvisor and looking at the website, the inn seemed to have several things going for it: the professional chef owners, the view of the mountains and the spa.

Quote from the website:
“The Taos spa offers massage, yoga, facials, and therapeutic baths and wraps. Guests enjoy choice vistas of Taos Mountain looking out upon Taos Pueblo lands and walking the Labyrinth in meditation where one stops in contemplation gazing upon Taos Pueblo mountain tops.”

We were not offered to purchase any spa services while there and learned that the owners call someone from an outside service to deliver any of these advertised treatments. Therefore, they should NOT call themselves a “spa.”

There is NO VIEW of the Taos mountains from the back of the property. The mountains are TOTALLY obscured from view by trees and foliage. The mountain view is listed as selling point for this inn which is very misleading. At the entrance to the property the grounds are weed covered, dusty, and neglected. There is no effort made at landscaping this property. The “Labyrinth” meditation circle is overgrown with weeds as well.

The breakfasts, were a big disappointment, considering that both hosts are professionally trained chefs. For breakfast there was coffee, tea, orange juice(good),and cranberry juice available. There was no fresh fruit served. The breakfasts were one course and not very tasty.

Quote from the website:
“Our breakfasts are two course meals that will pamper you and get you ready for your day in Taos.”

Day 1 – very dry blueberry pancakes w/two small sausages and lemon sauce. We had to ask for butter and maple syrup to make them edible.
Day 2 – an egg dish with raspberry sauce and dry toast (no bacon or sausage)
Day 3 – 2 slices of pumpkin bread (I think homemade) very dry with a cranberry sauce and cranberries (no bacon or sausage)

The D.H. Lawrence room is on the ground floor of the hotel and has a sliding glass door entrance which also serves as the only window in the room. Once in the room it was apparent that it had not been updated in a very long time. The room was in serious need of a paint job, had black lacquer lion’s head bed frame and old sheep skin rug draped across the chair. In addition there were two rugs hung on the walls which themselves were fine; however, one rug to the right of the fireplace obscured a door that had a large piece of white cardboard stapled to the lower half of the door. The door opened onto a small bedroom. The other rug was hung in an alcove and hid a pink mattress that was tied to hide a set of double doors. When it fell down two days into our stay we found that its purpose was to muffle the noise from the icemaker on the other side of the double doors.

The other noticeable thing about the accommodation was that no soap for the shower or tissues were provided. There were two bottles of SoftSoap brand supermarket soap on the two sinks in the bathroom area.

We also read the information notebook in our room which revealed some odd information. The notebook indicated that 1. Taos in on a fragile power grid and if the power goes out to take the flashlight on the wall and meet the owners in the living room. 2. There are stray/feral dogs and cats in Taos and we should not approach them if we encounter them on the property(we appreciated the warning) 3. Certain rooms (ours) are equipped with a “panic” button in the event of an emergency. Thankfully, there were two of us staying in the room together, for a single woman staying alone, this would have, I think, been very unnerving to say the least. Since the sliding glass door is your only means of fresh air, there is a security chain that you can lock so that you can keep the door open about 5 inches for air.

We did not express our feelings about our room, food or stay to the hosts, but oddly enough, Brad, one of the hosts apologized for the condition of our room and said it is the only one that has not been updated, because, it’s the most popular and people always reserve it. Since the inn appeared to have only 3 guests the first night and no other people staying there, why not offer to put us in one of the other “updated rooms” so that we would have a nicer stay and experience? As owners of a B&B your first consideration should be the quality of your guest’s stay and experience.

The final factor that we have to comment upon was the lack of warmth, friendliness or helpfulness on the part of both hosts. Neither Brad nor Amber seemed to be suited to interacting with guests. They were not particularly engaging or helpful. The oddest example of this came when we asked Brad about whether the Taos Pueblo had a feast day and dancing on June 12 as we had read in a magazine in the room. His response, was “ I don’t know, “they” (meaning the Taos Pueblo people) don’t tell us what they do”. Then Amber came out with a magazine and incorrectly told us that the next feast day was in a few weeks. Considering that the property backs up to the Taos Pueblo, it's a primary tourist attraction in Taos, and his wife’s family has ties to the pueblo, we thought his response was strange and indifferent.

We did enjoy Taos otherwise. We had a lovely dinner at Sabroso’s in Arroyo Seco, hiked in the Carson National Forest, visited the moving Vietnam Veteran’s museum/memorial in Angel Fire and enjoyed dinner at Orlando’s restaurant. Also, the Taos Visitor’s center has an excellent supply of information, maps and brochures for the entire state of New Mexico.

In closing, we would definitely NOT recommend staying at the Touchstone Inn.

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Dil02231994
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
worldwatchingwoman, Manager at Touchstone Inn, responded to this reviewResponded 18 June 2013

Typically, we do not respond to reviews ... good or poor. But in this case we would like to reiterate that when asked how things were from room to food we were told -- with a smile -- that everything was "fine" or "great". As far as us being friendly, we are and were, but the male in the party made my wife feel so uncomfortable due to the degree of ogling that she experienced that she requested I not leave her alone with the gentleman in any room or on any part of the property. No, we don't know all of the goings on in Taos and Taos Pueblo is its own sovereign nation and although an event may be posted (which there was no event on June 12th) they may, can, will, and have closed their gates to the public. The Lawrence has not been undated yet, I pointed that out, apologized, and they said that was “fine.” If they had actually said that they were disappointed prior to posting it on Tripadvisor then we certainly would have moved them to an available room on the back side of the property with a view of Taos Mountain (this is commonly our practice when we know a guest preference).

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Reviewed 8 June 2013

Highly recommended. Walking distance to everything, but the B and B is on spacious and beautiful grounds so you don't feel like you are close to downtown. The owners were very welcoming and helpful. We spent a lot of time in the comfortable living room. Breakfast was creative and delicious.

  • Stayed: June 2013
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Thank Mangi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 May 2013

Brad and Amber are spectacular!! We were married there and they made all the plans for us. It was so special. We will be returning for our anniversary next year. Thanks for making our day special.

The room was awesome as well along with the atmosphere and the breakfasts. They know how to take care if their guests!!

  • Stayed: May 2013
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1  Thank Rweiser12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 April 2013

My husband, daughter and I stayed for two nights. The room was clean and comfortable with a nice size bathroom (two sinks, which made things much easier). Brad made us two wonderful breakfasts. I had contacted him prior to our arrival to let him know about a food issue with my husband and Brad was more than willing to accommodate him. They were delicious, and filling breakfasts. We would definitely recommend the Touchstone Inn.

  • Stayed: April 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Lauren L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 February 2013

The bed was extremely warm, comfortable and clean. We had everything we needed and everyone was kind and helpful. The grounds are beautiful and well kept. Taos Pizza Outback andThe Love Apple are within walking distance and very good. A long walk or short drive takes you to Taos Plaza full of shops and restaurants.

  • Stayed: February 2013
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1  Thank Nssn89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Touchstone Inn

Address: 110 Mabel Dodge Lane, Taos, NM 87571
Region: United States > New Mexico > Taos County > Taos
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Spa Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #21 of 23 B&Bs / Inns in Taos
Price Range: £92 - £147 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Touchstone Inn 3.5*
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A secluded inn close to everything Taos! Touchstone is a secluded historic estate at the edge of Taos Pueblo lands. The native peoples consider Touchstone to be medicine land and a place for transformation. Touchstone offers cozy rooms with fireplaces and Jacuzzi tubs in most of them. We cater to couples as a romantic getaway and to groups as a retreat center, workshops and weddings. Both USA Today and Fodor's Guide say Touchstone is the #1 place to stay in Taos. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Touchstone Inn Taos, New Mexico

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