Hello Santa Fe! We can’t wait to stay at La Fonda on the Plaza!

The International Food, Wine and Travel Writers Association (IFWTWA) is thrilled to be visiting New Mexico this November 11-13, 2019. Conference attendees will be staying at the “casually elegant” historic La Fonda on the Plaza during the #ifwtwa2019 Conference. 

On a recent episode of Big Blend Radio, Ed Pulsifer, Director of Sales & Marketing shared the fascinating history of La Fonda on the Plaza. Ed is a great storyteller. Grab a glass of wine, sit back and enjoy this interview as he describes how Fred Harvey and architect Mary Colter both played a role in designing and boosting cultural tourism for the hotel, Santa Fe, and the Old West.

La Fonda on the Plaza is a historic luxury hotel, located on the Old Santa Fe Trail, and adjacent is the iconic Route 66. The hotel has over 40 docents to guide guests through a more than 400 year cultural history. More about La Fonda on the Plaza: https://www.lafondasantafe.com/

IFWTWA sincerely thanks La Fonda for working with us to bring our members to such an exciting historic destination venue. All writers who are interested in food, wine and the travel industry are invited to our conference. Participants will benefit from our speakers, events, workshops and networking opportunities with other writers and industry leaders. The special La Fonda “group room rate” made available during our conference makes this Conference a real value too!

Santa Fe pueblo style lobby with dark wood posts, vigas, beams and blue leather

Lobby at La Fonda on the Plaza ~ Image courtesy of La Fonda

Excerpt from: CBS NEWS February 24, 2019, 9:35 AM:

How the west was won – by a restaurant chain

The trains brought in fresh food from all these different places. They refrigerated it. You could bring oysters all the way from New York to Arizona.

Top-quality food that was served to everyone, at a time when that wasn't so popular.

"When you're on the train, everybody's on the train – all colors, all classes. Everybody stays in the hotels when they're traveling, everybody eats in the trackside restaurant," Fried said.

Add to that perfect service provided by young, smiling women in crisp, white aprons, who came west by the thousands to work for the Fred Harvey Company.

Vintage black & white young women in restaurant serving attire

The Harvey Girls - wait staff at a Harvey House restaurant.  Credit: FRED HARVEY COMPANY

The Fred Harvey Company also hired a woman to be their main architect – the brilliant and intimidating Mary Colter, who designed many of Fred Harvey's grand hotels, and invented what we now think of as "Santa Fe style." 

Santa Fe style dining room - black & white historical image

The "Santa Fe style" popularized by architect Mary Colter.  Credit: FRED HARVEY COMPANY

Harvey's great-grandson, Charles Daggett Harvey Jr., remembers her well: "I never saw my father afraid of much. And even when he would describe the kamikaze off of Okinawa, he didn't speak of that with fear. But when we spoke of Mary Colter, it was awe."

Find full article here

More about Fred Harvey & Harvey Houses: Civilizing the Old West

We're excited! If the foregoing isn't quite enough to get you hooked, in the following podcast, featured guests include travel writer Linda Milks - IFWTWA 1st Vice President & Conference Committee Chair, Joanne Hudson - PR Manager of Tourism Santa Fe, and Jenny Kimball, CEO of La Fonda on the Plaza. So much of the history of the Southwest can be discovered right here in Santa Fe. Featured music is "Travel Song" by guitarist Micha Schellhaas.

For those who want to advance their careers, learn new tools and techniques, engage and network---this is a must attend. And especially for those interested in cultural tourism, art and history. Santa Fe ranks as the country’s 3rd largest art market with over 250 galleries, 300 restaurants, 70 jewelry stores, 13 museums and a world-renowned outdoor opera. 

La Terraza at La Fonda on the Plaza

La Terraza at La Fonda on the Plaza ~ Image courtesy of La Fonda

Conference Schedule & Registration

Santa Fe is set against a backdrop of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains at 7,000 feet. Santa Fe “The City Different” embodies a rich history, melding Hispanic, Anglo and Native American cultures whose influences are apparent in everything from the architecture, to the food and the arts. Originally founded by Spanish settlers in 1610, the winding streets, adobe architecture and traditional artwork delight guests at every turn. Come join the fun!

Here’s your invitation. See you there!

2019 IFWTWA Conference Ad


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