New Mexico
Santa Fe Summer Cultural Kaleidoscope: Opera, O’Keeffe and More
Attend an opera performances and a flamenco performance, explore unique sites, enjoy the Georgia O’Keeffe museum and learn the story of Santa Fe from the experts who live here.
Rating (4.75)
Program No. 11298RJ
6 days
Starts at
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6 days
5 nights
12 meals
5 B 3 L 4 D
Getting There
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Program Registration, Orientation, Introductions, Dinner
Santa Fe
Drury Plaza Hotel Santa Fe

Activity note: Check-in available from 3:00 p.m.

Afternoon: Program Registration: After you have your room assignment, come over to the Road Scholar table to register with the program staff, to get your welcome packet containing your name-tag, up-to-date schedule and other important information, and to confirm the time and location of the Orientation session. If you arrive late, please ask for your packet at the front desk when you check in. Orientation: The Group Leader will greet everyone with a warm welcome and lead introductions. We will review the program theme, the up-to-date daily schedule and any changes, discuss safety guidelines, emergency procedures, roles and responsibilities, and answer any questions you may have. Transportation for program-related activities will be via motorcoach unless specified otherwise. Free time is reserved for your personal independent exploration. Please be aware that program activities, schedules, and personnel may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding. The opera has asked us to advise our participants that they will NOT be allowed to exchange tickets at the box office. After receiving your tickets, you may trade seats with other participants in the program, but you may NOT make exchanges through the box office. Our seats at the opera are assigned by the box office, and we cannot provide advance information on seat locations. If, however, you require a particular seat location, please notify the Santa Fe office as far in advance as possible, and we will make best efforts to accommodate the request DEPENDING ON AVAILABILITY.

Dinner: At 6:30 p.m. in our meeting room, enjoy a plated dinner or buffet including choice of entrées, fresh seasonal vegetables, dessert, and coffee or tea.

Evening: At leisure. Take the rest of the evening to continue getting to know your fellow participants, relax, and get a good night’s sleep for the full day ahead.

History and O'Keeffe Lectures & Museum, Downtown, Opera
Santa Fe
Drury Plaza Hotel Santa Fe

Activity note: Walking up to one mile over course of the day over paved terrain; standing at the museum; walking several hundred feet and negotiating stairs at the opera house.

Breakfast: Hotel's hot breakfast buffet available at 6:00 a.m. includes scrambled eggs, sausage, Belgian waffles, biscuits and gravy. Plus fresh fruit, bagels, pastries, juices, hot and cold cereals, toast, milk, coffee, tea and more.

Morning: After breakfast, we'll enjoy an expert-led presentation about the history of Santa Fe. From the earliest Paleo-Indians inhabitants to the Spanish settlers and American merchants who followed, Santa Fe has been at the crossroads of history. We'll hear its story in a fascinating presentation. We'll then hear about the life and art of Georgia O'Keeffe. After moving to northern New Mexico in 1949, Ms. O'Keeffe spent the next 26 years producing distinctive and iconic paintings of the area's landscape, flowers, and other regional subjects.

Lunch: New Mexican buffet at a popular local dining spot.

Afternoon: After lunch we’ll walk 4 blocks to the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum. The museum holds the largest collection of O’Keeffe’s work in the world – over 3,000 of the artist’s works – comprising 140 of her oil paintings, almost 700 drawings and hundreds of additional works. The museum offers a varying selection of O’Keeffe’s work, as well as works by other artists in changing exhibits. A docent will lead us through the museum and point out highlights. Our Group Leader will then lead us on a walking exploration of the Santa Fe Plaza area followed by free time for independent explorations.

Dinner: The motorcoach will depart for the Santa Fe Opera where we will enjoy dinner, including wine and dessert, at the open-air cantina on the beautifully landscaped rehearsal grounds. The featured speaker will offer an informative talk about this evening's opera during the dessert course.

Evening: After dinner, we'll enjoy this evening's opera performance, "L'Italiana in Algeri " (The Italian Girl in Algiers; sung in Italian). “L’Italiana in Algeri," an immediate hit on is debut in 1813, is considered one of Gioachino Rossini’s finest and funniest comedies, garnering praise from fans such as Stendahl and Richard Strauss. Courted by three ardent suitors, “The Italian Girl” Isabella must figure out how to liberate her true love, Lindoro, held captive by would-be suitor Mustafa, while fending off Taddeo, yet another hopeful suitor. Needless to say, hijinks ensue. Corrado Rovaris conducts, with mezzo-soprano Daniela Mack as Isabella, tenor Jack Swanson as Lindoro, and bass Scott Conner as Mustafa We expect to return to the hotel by about 11:30 p.m.

Georgia O'Keeffe Home & Studio Visit, Abiquiu, Free Evening
Santa Fe
Drury Plaza Hotel Santa Fe

Activity note: Walking up to one mile over the course of the day over paved and unpaved terrain; optional hiking at Ghost Ranch; standing during the studio visit.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet.

Morning: We'll board our motorcoach and travel 60 miles north to Abiquiu and Ghost Ranch, Georgia O'Keeffe's first New Mexico home. The ranch is now a retreat operated by the Presbyterian church, which maintains three small museums on site and also several hiking trails into the red-rock country that O'Keeffe's paintings made famous. While her Ghost Ranch house is now in private hands and not open to visitors, we will have the opportunity to see the landscape that so enchanted O'Keeffe that she moved permanently to the area. There are several hiking trails in the area; in addition, the small paleontology, anthropology and art museums are definitely worth a look.

Lunch: At the Ghost Ranch cafeteria, enjoy a buffet plus water, coffee, tea, and soft drinks.

Afternoon: After lunch, we'll visit the Georgia O'Keeffe home and studio with a local expert. Georgia O'Keeffe bought her house in Abiquiu of 1945. The Spanish Colonial-style compound was in ruins when she purchased it and for the next four years, O’Keeffe supervised its restoration, which was carried out by her friend, Maria Chabot. She moved from New York to make New Mexico her permanent home in 1949. We'll also have the opportunity to explore some artists' studios in the small village of Abiquiu. Return to the hotel for free evening.

Dinner: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to sample the local cuisine. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions to restaurants both downtown and near the hotel.

Evening: At leisure.

Southwest Cuisine, State Capitol, Opera Performance
Santa Fe
Drury Plaza Hotel Santa Fe

Activity note: Walking up to one mile over paved and unpaved terrain on field trips; standing at the capitol building; walking from bus to seats at the opera.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet.

Morning: This morning, we will enjoy a lecture on Southwest cuisine from a local expert. We then board the motorcoach for a short ride out to the home and studio of Dr. Lois Ellen Frank, a renowned chef and anthropologist who will do a presentation on local foods from her James Beard award-winning cookbook, "Foods of the Southwest Indian Nations."

Lunch: A delicious plated meal hosted by Red Mesa Cuisine.

Afternoon: After returning to Santa Fe, we'll go to the State Capitol Building. Known as "The Roundhouse" because of its unique architectural design based on the traditional Zia sun symbol (also seen on the state flag), the building houses the State Capitol Art Collection featuring the work of New Mexican artists, photographers and sculptors. Return to the hotel for some free time following the capitol visit.

Dinner: Meet as a group in the hotel lobby and walk 3 blocks to El Flamenco Santa Fe for dinner.

Evening: Flamenco performance. Entreflamenco Company was founded by Antonio Granjero in 1998. Based originally in Madrid, Spain, and under other working titles and name, the company traveled throughout the Iberian peninsula being presented in places such as the Palau de la Musica de Barcelona, Festival de Verano de la Communidad de Madrid and Ciclos Culturales de Alcala de Henares (Madrid). Later, the company traveled throughout the United States and Central America performing in Houston Hobby Center (Houston, TX), Charline McCombs Empire Theatre (San Antonio, TX), Festival Flamenco de Santa Barbara (Santa Barbara, CA) and Teatro National de Panama (Panama City, Panama). They now make their home in Santa Fe.

Museum Hill
Santa Fe
Drury Plaza Hotel Santa Fe

Activity note: Walking up to a mile over paved and unpaved terrain; standing at museums.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet available at 7:00 a.m.

Morning: This morning we'll board our motorcoach and travel to Museum Hill for visits to the Museum of Indian Arts & Culture and the Museum of International Folk Art. The Museum of Indian Arts and Culture tells the story of the indigenous people of the Southwest from the earliest times to modern day, featuring some 70,000 objects, documents and artifacts. The Museum of International Folk Art continues to focus on indigenous populations from around the world through their art – ranging from ceremonial dress and masks to furniture. The museum holds the largest collection of international folk art in the world, including wings featuring some of the 106,000 pieces donated by collectors Alexander and Susan Girard and Lloyd Cotsen's Neutrogena collection. We will return to the hotel for lunch on our own and free afternoon.

Lunch: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to sample the local cuisine. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions to restaurants both downtown and near the hotel.

Afternoon: Free afternoon for independent explorations, relaxation, or socialization with your fellow participants.

Dinner: At the hotel.

Evening: After dinner, we will share our experiences and exchange our farewells.

Breakfast and Departures
Santa Fe

Activity note: Hotel checkout: 11:00 a.m.

Breakfast: Hotel buffet available at 7:00 a.m.

Morning: If you are departing from the hotel, please check out no later than 11:00 a.m. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please be in touch via the Road Scholar Social Network, where you can share memories, pictures, and comments. Best wishes for all your journeys!

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