Ruidoso Expanding its Tourist Horizons

TripAdvisor Names Ruidoso Top 16 Place to Rent a Cabin

Will it Bring in New Business?

Ruidoso-NMMost of us who already live – or at least have a second home – in Ruidoso know what a great getaway this mountain resort town can be. The number of people who know that just might grow a little bit after named Ruidoso, one of 16 top places to rent a cabin.

“These are users voting for Ruidoso, NM. Because we’re in the top 16, I’d really look at Ruidoso even if I’d never been here,” said Judy Shettel, owner of Ruidoso Lodge Cabins and other properties in the Upper Canyon. “Most of our guests are from Texas, but those a bit more adventurous might look at us closer. This has got to be good for business.”

Shettel isn’t the only one who welcomes the possible extra business. There are several hotel, cabin and rental property owners and managers who are looking forward to any bump in the tourist season.

“Depending on how the feed on this comes through, how many people did this truly get to?” asked Cindi Clayton-Davis, owner of Condotel in Ruidoso. “Maybe it could get to someone in Wisconsin, who might want to check Ruidoso out.”

“There’s no doubt people are shopping and researching before they purchase online,” said Brad Tolhurst, manager of Whispering Pines Cabins. “It’s our hope and expectation that by Ruidoso being rated, this will increase lodging business in town.”

Being a resort town, Ruidoso has been victim to the fluctuations of seasons. Post Labor Day crowds were non-existent when Ruidoso Downs Race Track closed its meet in the fall, and the same was true after spring break, as Ski Apache shut down after the winter.

Those “shoulder seasons” – March-April and early October-November – used to be a time when stores and restaurants would close completely for more than a month. There just wasn’t any business.

Clayton-Davis said that’s not the case anymore.

“We’re sold out in July and August, people start coming in on different days and that’s been the trend the past 20 years,” Clayton-Davis said. “We don’t really slow down until the latter part of October. There’s really only three or four weeks of off-season before it’s time to go again.”

Also, people are coming in from other places besides the bedrock of Texas that’s been the source of so many tourism dollars.
Tolhurst – who hails from Alberta, Canada – knows this well.

“It’s no longer just the horse racing clientele,” Tolhurst said. “There’s young affluent families that want to go skiing and escape the heat. There’s lots of different activities going on.”

Ruidoso’s unique-ness also works in its favor.

“There are numerous small, family-owned cabin operations in the Upper Canyon, several second homes as well, beyond the hotels in the area,” Shettel said. “People have a lot of choices.”

See what TripAdvisor has to say about the town and all it has to offer.