Gay Bars in Santa Fe? - The Official Gay Santa Fe Site!
Santa Fe may be the most popular gay destination in New Mexico but it tends to draw a relatively couples-oriented, arts-minded, romantic crowd – not too many singles seeking out nightlife options (unless you count going out to a concert, or a performance at the world-class Santa Fe Opera). Similarly, many of the gays and lesbian who live in Santa Fe are over 35 and in relationships. For this reason, Santa Fe has never supported a full-time, dedicated gay bar for an especially long period of time. However, there are still good options to grab a cocktail!
Skylight is a locally owned and operated, community minded live music, dining and events venue in the heart of downtown Santa Fe. With a large and unique space, Skylight can host a variety of events from concerts and performances to private parties including fundraisers, retreats and receptions. The nightly entertainment includes live music, DJs, comedy and dance. Skylight offers four full bars, two dance floors and dinner until midnight. Rental packages are also available for all budgets. We invite you to be a part of the revitalization of the downtown Santa Fe performing arts community. UPDATE: Skylight is running on a limited schedule. Check their website for hours.
A relatively less-known downtown Santa Fe bar called The Matador (at the corner of San Francisco and Galisteo Sts.) also has something of a gay scene. It’s a tiny basement space with a funky, dive-y, un-touristy vibe, and the scene seems to be especially on the gay side on Friday nights. It’s just off the Plaza, close to many of Santa Fe’s top restaurants – you may be surprised, once you check out this dark little haunt, that downtown Santa Fe has a bar that’s so happily anti-precious.
A new-comer on the scene is the Bar Alto. Located on the rooftop of the Drury Hotel, Bar Alto is the perfect place to relax and unwind. Their outdoor rooftop patio has over 50 seats for you to enjoy stunning views of Santa Fe and the southwest sunsets. Try one of their signature, handcrafted cocktails or a classic favorite.
In the historic and atmospheric Hotel St. Francis, the hip yet easygoing Secreto Bar (210 Don Gaspar Ave., 505-983-5700) serves some of the finest and most interesting craft cocktails in town – the smoked-sage margarita is a favorite. On warm evenings, grab a seat on the open-air covered loggia and watch the crowds stroll by.
Elsewhere in town, among the several mainstream bars you’ll find here, a few are especially charming and fun as well as being quite welcoming of gay visitors. Will you likely see other gay folks at any of these places? Maybe – maybe not. But you’re apt to have a good time, if all you’re looking for is a warm and inviting place for a cocktail. These establishments include El Farol, a historic Spanish tapas restaurant and live-music bar on art-gallery-lined Canyon Road; the Staab House, a swank lounge inside the snazzy La Posada de Santa Fe Resort; Vanessie Restaurant and Piano Bar, a gay-popular piano cabaret attached to a very good steakhouse; and the see-and-be-seen Dragon Room, a favorite gathering spot at the esteemed Pink Adobe Restaurant.
Other great bets include the rollicking Cowgirl (319 S. Guadalupe St., 505-982-2565), a rambling barbecue and New Mexican food restaurant and bar with live music most nights and a charming patio; and Harry’s Roadhouse (Old Las Vegas Hwy., 1 mi south of the Old Pecos Trail, 505-989-4629), a hugely popular locals’ hangout on the southeastern outskirts of town, where you’ll find outstanding and affordable food, super margaritas, and an eclectic, fun-loving crowd.