Truth or Consequences. This town is just off Interstate 25, almost exactly half-way between Las Cruces and Socorro. It would probably be by-passed if not for Elephant Butte and its own hot springs. Honestly, I'm not sure if most of the restaurants and its few shops were closed because of the town's flooding, or that the town is permanently sleepy.
I went for the hot spring spa experience. I stayed at Sierra Grande Lodge, where a free soak is included with each day of your stay. I planned the perfect spa weekend--soak, deep tissue massage, dinner, soak, relaxing sleep. I accomplished everything except the relaxing sleep. I was assigned to a first floor room, but it does not appear to matter what floor you stay on at this place, according to Trip Advisor. Anyway, at 3:00 a.m., some unknown employee started making noises. Dishes were clanking, carts were rolling down uncarpeted hallways, and what sounded like endless ice scooping finally sent me over the edge. Clad in my bathrobe, I went out to inquire, WTF? In a clueless manner, the woman offered to close off a door. No other staff were around, so I was forced to insist that she stop the noise because by then, it was 4:00 in the morning! Out of sheer exhaustion, I fell asleep again until I heard the noise again at 6:00. Long story, short, the lodge discounted my room by 50%, but lack of sleep impacted the rest of my weekend. Because of that, I wouldn't recommend staying here--oh, and the the breakfast was abysmal. To be the most expensive lodging in town, it does not live up to its serenely photographed website.
Luckily, I had pre-booked a soak at the Riverbend Hot Springs. While I didn't see the rooms, I am certain that I would have gotten a nice rest there. It's a cheery, friendly spa where an emphasis on a restful experience shines through. I was told that the rooms were recently renovated, and the private soaking rooms were great. Soaking while overlooking the Rio Grande and mountains was a blissful experience that salvaged an otherwise annoying experience.
I was left with the impression that this is a town where a lot of old hippies and drifters have come to settle. However, when I read the town's "things to do" book, it is presented itself much differently. The flooding must have been a factor. Don't get me wrong, everyone was nice, pleasant, and friendly. Not much shopping or cafe-sitting, though. (My exploration was limited to the main downtown area).
For dinner, I dined at BellaLuca Italian restaurant, that was very good. For breakfast, I ended up going out to the Passion Cafe for a very tasty breakfast sandwich and great coffee. Saturday night was the town's Art Walk evening, so I was able to visit a few galleries, where I was warmly welcomed.
To clarify, T or C was a bit more lively than my experience in Silver. I was in town for about 24 hours, and I think that was about right for this particular weekend. Even if my experience had been better at Sierra Lodge, I would probably still be left with the same impressions. Perhaps the previous day's flooding played a role in a lot of businesses being shut, and if I'm ever again in the area, I would stop in again for a weekend.
With all that said, do go to Tor C to enjoy a fabulous soak. There are several spas to choose from, so if you have the time, spa hop. Riverbend gets high praises from me, and if you have the heart, drive up to to the dam at Elephant Butte!!
All photos and content are the property of © Helen Moore 2014