(September 23, 2016)—Truth or Consequences is one of those small New Mexico towns that needs to be experienced for one to fully appreciate its appeal. You may not think the little desert burb holds much of interest, but it’s actually an eclectic oasis located just off of I-25. With several great restaurants, art galleries, museums, thrift shops and other points of interest, T or C makes an excellent destination for a quick getaway.
And most significantly, the town exists right smack dab on top of hot mineral springs, which provide numerous therapeutic benefits. The existence of the hot springs has been over the years the primary driver of the town’s tourist industry and reputation as a resort town. People come from all over New Mexico as well as nearby states like Texas and Arizona to enjoy the natural hot springs and take a break from their busy lives.
Though the town is dotted with numerous spas, by far one of the finest is Riverbend Hot Springs, located in the downtown area right on the edge of the Rio Grande River. In addition to multiple public hot tubs, Riverbend has a total of seven deluxe private pools available for one hour rentals, all of which offer beautiful views of the gently flowing Rio Grande. Each private pool features chaise lounges when you need a break from the hot water of the springs (which you definitely will), as well as a cold shower and even misters that can be turned on to cool the air.
In addition to the private pools, Riverbend offers five public pools which all flow into one another. These are available for free if you are staying in one of the rooms at the resort, or if you aren’t staying at Riverbend, you can purchase a “Property Pass” that allows you to use the pools. Next to the public pools is a path that leads right into the Rio Grande if you want to do some river wading. The pools are always fresh and clean thanks to the fact that they are emptied nightly and refilled for the next day.
We stayed in one of the Artist Rooms, which while relatively small was designed to make the most of the space. They were also reasonably priced at only $82.50 a night. For those wanting more room, Riverbend also offers small casitas located a few feet from the public and private pools that range from $137 to $176 a night. There is also a barbecue available for use if you want to buy some steaks from the local grocery store and have an impromptu outdoor cookout. There is a nice, covered lounge area where we drank some wine and took in the nice ambiance. As an aside, alcohol is prohibited in all of the pool areas.
In the evening when we were ready for dinner we simply walked five minutes to a choice of several restaurants in downtown T or C. For such a small town there are a surprising number of restaurants that seem to have culinary masters at work in the kitchen. There is some genuinely good, creative cuisine going on this town.
Riverbend is beautiful night and day, but it’s particularly magical in the evening, when the place is lit up with beautifully designed lighting. Overall, the energy at Riverbend is quite inviting and feels private and intimate thanks to the creative layout and warmly lit outdoor spaces. Adding to the subtlety of the environment, there is always calming, relaxing music piped in throughout the resort. It’s ideal for a quick romantic getaway or if you just want a place to escape to a place where time seems to have stopped.
Overall, we had a fantastic stay. Riverbend’s facility itself is top notch and the service is very good, with friendly, helpful staff. We already have a wintertime visit in mind when the weather turns cold.
Zachary Mayne is a native New Mexican who was born in the East Mountains. One of six siblings, he was raised in a creative environment thanks to his parents, who were musicians and artists.
Mayne briefly attended the Academy of Art College in San Francisco, where he studied automotive design. He moved back to New Mexico in 1999 to study journalism and photography at CNM and UNM.
He began freelancing for automotive publications while in school and has gone on to contribute to over 25 different automotive publications that are based in the U.S. as well as in England. He has had hundreds of articles published that feature his writing and photography.
Mayne currently freelances for a number of car magazines and also works as a freelance photographer. In his spare time he restores classic cars