Hotel El Rancho, New Mexico

We continued our journey eastward in I-40,  and following the historical trail list, we have passed by the giant Window Rock mountains which were beautiful and unique. The Pyramid Rock and the huge holes in were its unique features.  We moved out to route 66 and the hotel was easy to find. We parked and looked inside, and as we explored here is its brief history.

Hotel el Rancho Postcard

“The El Rancho Hotel was built in 1937 and is located on old Route 66. From the 1930s to the 1950s, the hotel became a temporary home for many Hollywood stars. The El Rancho Hotel has been designated a National Historic Site and retains the charm of Old West Gallup. Autographed photos of the movie stars who have visited and Navajo Rugs surround the two-story rustic lobby.

The rustic wooden doors take visitors right back to the old west. Heavy wooden furniture, a player piano, and the famous movie star photos surround the lobby. Add original Navaho rugs, a crackling fire in a stone fireplace, western paintings, and a friendly staff and you have the makings of a great western experience.”

Since we were not guests of the hotel, all I can do was to take pictures around the lobby and savor the moment to relieve these olden days. One thing that has made the hotel special was the fact about the famous people who once stayed in this place. They were immortalized through this.

“The El Rancho’s hotel rooms are each named after individual movie stars who have stayed at the historic hotel. Rooms range from a Presidential Suite and Bridal Suite to simple one-bedrooms. Heavy western furniture is a signature of the El Rancho. The hotel has three stories with rooms on two levels. There is a staff-operated elevator. The inside corridors are painted brick highlighted with old west murals.”

The quote was directly taken from the website. To end its heyday with the opening of Interstate 40, the property fell into decline. Armand Ortega bought and restored the property.

Here is the list of famous guests:

  • Ronald Reagan
  • Jane Wyman
  • Spencer Tracy
  • Kirk Douglas
  • Katharine Hepburn
  • Jackie Cooper
  • John Wayne
  • Alan Ladd

Here is the movie headquarters.

  • The Bad Man 1940
  • Sundown 1941
  • The Desert Song 1942
  • Song of the Nile 1944
  • Four Faces West & Colorado Territory 1947-1948
  • Streets of Laredo 1948
  • Rocky Mountain 1950
  • Ace in the Hole (1951 film) 1951 (AKA The Big Carnival)
  • New Mexico 1950
  • Fort Defiance 1950
  • Raton Pass 1951
  • Fort Massacre 1957
  • A Distant Trumpet 1963
  • The Hallelujah Trail 1964
  • Bottom of the World 2017

Here is the link for more information:


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