Welcome to Casa Artista!


Many of you will remember when we all chose the perfect house for my Mom in Santa Fe. That was back in 2010. And it was the perfect house – but it did not have the lifetime friends, memories, and familiarity to be her forever home. So, after five years here and her 90th birthday, Mom moved back to Michigan.

Did it break my heart? Absolutely. But I also get it and she is very happy back there where she “recognizes the street signs”.

You gotta make lemonade, right?

So, my brother and I, who co-owned the house with Mom, decided to make it the most wonderful vacation rental ever, and that is why you haven’t heard much from me lately. I have been CREATING the biggest art project yet, and having so much fun doing it!

It’s a beauty! And the best part of the project is that it brought back my creative connection that had gotten so lost for awhile. A different kind of creative activity and I think that is what did the trick – engaging with something that wasn’t my usual.

I have just listed Casa Artista (House of the Artist) on VRBO.com (Vacation Rental by Owner) and I am excited for you to see what I have been doing . . .

Casa Artista Santa Fe

With the cost of hotel rooms in Santa Fe proper over $250/night, getting a three bedroom house for $200/night is a great deal, and you also get the views and country feeling of our village which is 15 minutes out of town. And, the protected night skies are to die for. I would love it if you would share this link with friends. I want to get the word out.

AND . . . I have been thinking about mini-retreats (3-4 students) where you would stay together at Casa Artista and we would have our workshops right there. Is that a good idea? It sure sounds like fun to me. I live 5 minutes away so all the rooms would be for students.

I am thinking about beginning fused glass workshops, and iPad Art Journaling combined with best Studio Tour week-ends in the Fall.

What do you think of those ideas?

And how do you like my little castle?




  1. Jessica, I love your ideas! My only thought is the price. It seems too low for an entire house. Renters can be hard on rentals. Would this be like a bed and breakfast?

  2. We went through the same thing with my mother when we moved to AZ from NJ. She came, found a place, and decided she missed her town/friends/church. So she moved home and was happy for a long time. I do understand her feelings. So we traveled east when she couldn’t travel west. As for your vacation cottage, I think it’s a wonderful idea to rent it nightly and also for workshops. Other people I know have been successful at this. Good luck!

  3. HI Cathy,
    Yes, this is like a bed and breakfast, but you have the house to yourself and do your own cooking. There are damage deposits in place etc. and the short term doesn’t give too much time for wreckage. My dear friend, Betsy, can watch the house from hers and people are screened by me so we won’t have a lot of party animals.
    Vacation rentals are becoming a big trend. I am keeping the price in the range of the other properties in the area. It does seem too low when compared to a single hotel room, but not when compared to other VRs.

  4. Such a great idea…rentals and retreats! Love it! Best wishes to your mom and to you for making lemonade!

  5. love the house, it’s gorgeous. as is the view, of course, since it’s SF! hope it’s a successful venture for you, with minimal upkeep. and i love your ideas for how to use it for art retreats … fantastic!

  6. VRBO link? I’ll share it, but I didn’t see the VRBO link. THis might be a good thing for those who come out from the end of May through the beginning of August for the Making Art Safely workshops where several students might want to pitch in to share this house. I think it is close to the print studio. You might want to go out there and visit Don Messec who lives out there and runs the workshops.

  7. Beautiful place! The art retreats sound like a great idea. I think Linda Hanson has had fun with hers. You should give her a call, maybe you could do some art retreat space trades. lol 😉

  8. I love your castle, Jessica! I think that your ideas for vacation rental and small art retreats are great ideas.

  9. Oh jessica, this is a great idea! It is beautiful, both inside and out, and I cannot wait to stay in it! I’m already thinking of friends with whom we can share this wonderful space.

  10. I really like the art retreat idea and surely if you want good tenants renting to people coming to town for any sort of art event would be excellent! Would be worth making the connections with other people in the area that will be having people come in for workshops, etc.

    Glad you are back to being inspired.


  11. Hi Jessica, I went to the VRBO website and can’t locate Casa Artista. Retreats sound great!

  12. All your ideas sound wonderful. I’ll post the link on my FB page. I have friends who travel to Santa Fe for the Indian Market in August but am not sure if they have already lined a rental up. Small retreats would be good, also.

  13. HI Deb – just click the link in my Comment above to go directly to it. Here it is again
    Going in through VRBO, you search Santa Fe, NM and then choose Eldorado under “Neighborhoods”

  14. FABULOUS! Please post photos of the inside too!
    How many can it accommodate? The more, the less expensive for all.
    How is your rehab coming along?

  15. Hi Jessica,
    I love, most of all, your idea of art workshops for small groups. I hope you will keep thinking of exciting explorations for us. Some, like myself are not ready to get into glass, and do not yet own an iPad. What would you think of some mixed media visual journals? Is that a possibility?
    The house is just beautiful… a New Mexico-style dream house, I would’nt have been able to leave it. but that’s just me.
    Keep on getting, (and feeling), better

  16. Hi Jerrie – there are LOTS of interior photos on the VRBO site (see the direct link in the Comments above). The house can sleep 6 in three bedrooms – two bedrooms with queen beds and one bedroom with two twin beds. So yes – the more the merrier, and the more affordable. Great for girlfriend weekends. AND I am almost back to total mobility – thanks for asking.

  17. Great ideas. I always use VRBO when I travel (anything over 1 or 2 nights). Attending a retreat(s) is high on my “to do” list for next year, so, this just might work for me.

  18. Two friends and I are interested renting next Spring during the Same time as El Dorado Open Studio Tour. How do we make this happen ?

  19. Great for a girlfriend week-end, Linda. I am thinking the Studio Tour will be May 14-15 next year because it is usually held the week-end after Mother’s Day.
    How we make this happen:
    Go to the listing:
    Choose your dates in the Calendar and hit “Get An Instant Quote”
    That sends a reservation inquiry to me and we go from there.

  20. I just got the bright idea of forwarding the link to many of my friends who love the Santa Fe area. Hope this gets some results for you!

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