Seniors Enjoy Another Las Vegas


This Las Vegas is the county seat of San Miguel County, New Mexico. Senior travelers will find it along side of I-25 at the foot of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. At one time, the town became so large that it rivaled Denver, Tucson and El Paso in size. Today the population runs right at 15,000 and has much to offer visitors of all ages.

Las Vegas was established back in 1835 after a group of settlers received a land grant from the Mexican government. The town was laid out in the traditional Spanish Colonial style, with a central plaza surrounded by buildings which could serve as fortifications in case of attack.


Today senior visitors will discover that it’s not that hard to imagine what Las Vegas might have been like when Billy The Kid, Doc Holliday and other notorious folks wandered the historic streets.

It is said that this Las Vegas was as “Wicked as Dodge City, Kansas” and is said to have been the “Worst of the Worst of the Old West, whatever that means.

 Seniors Step Back In Time In Las Vegas

The Las Vegas-San Miguel Chamber of Commerce notes that a visit to Las Vegas, New Mexico is like stepping back in time. “Landmarks, legends and lore” come to life in New Mexico’s favorite and best preserved outdoor architectural museums and National treasure.


Senior visitors will discover 5 Main Street historic districts and over 900 buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Historic Bridge Street is called one of the 10 Best Main Streets in America.

TripAdvisor suggests starting off with the Pecos National Historic Park in the midst of piñon, juniper, and ponderosa pine woodlands then go visit Victory Ranch, the largest alpaca ranch in the southwest with nearly 200 animals on 1,100 scenic acres.

Two hotels stand out among those in Las Vegas: La Plaza and La Castaneda that is being restored. A northern Arizona hotelier, Allan Affeldt, who restored La Posada in Winslow, AZ, where my wife and I stayed recently, has purchased the  century-old railroad hotel in Las Vegas.


Seniors Discover Another Harvey House

The mission revival hotel, completed in 1898, was one of the first of the Harvey Houses, Fred Harvey’s chain of hotels and restaurants that furthered tourism development in the Southwest. The Beckers look forward to a pleasant weekend in La Castaneda when it is fully restored.

When the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad reached the Las Vegas settlement in 1879, it was the biggest city between San Francisco and Independence, Missouri. The full revival of this historic city is underway now, spurred by Wild West can-do spirit and the renovation of its landmark hotel, La Castaneda.

The city itself is a veritable museum and well worth a visit, so put it on your travel bucket list today. -jeb

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