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Make your escape: Inn of the Mountain Gods is the perfect place to do just that

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sometimes you just have to do something spontaneous and get away. I did just that last weekend and headed to Inn of the Mountain Gods in Ruidoso. It was the best decision I’ve made in a long time – and a much-needed escape.

The nearly three-and-a-half-hour drive from Albuquerque is gorgeous. And, driving through the heart of tiny New Mexico towns such as San Antonio and Carrizozo is a nice change from the hustle and bustle of Albuquerque. Once you get into Ruidoso, the beautiful forest terrain is indescribable. There also is something special about the cool, crisp mountain air that gives you a second wind.

The view from Wendell’s Restaurant at the Inn of the Mountain Gods in Mescalero. (Rozanna M. Martinez/Albuquerque Journal)

The view from Wendell’s Restaurant at the Inn of the Mountain Gods in Mescalero. (Rozanna M. Martinez/Albuquerque Journal)

From the time that I arrived at Inn of the Mountain Gods, everyone I encountered was courteous and helpful, from the valet to the reception area to the staff at Wendell’s Restaurant. Everyone was friendly. And, there is no getting away from the spectacular views that Inn of the Mountain Gods has to offer. My room had a sliding glass door that led to a small patio with outdoor chairs and a table. It was the perfect place to sit, relax and just be still in front of the gorgeous lake and the mountains that encompass the golf course.

I only stayed one night, but it felt as if I stayed a few days. Long story short, I took in a great concert featuring Volbeat and Trivium, met friends at Club 49 and the Big Game Sports Bar, and the next day had a delicious three-cheese egg white omelette for brunch at Wendell’s. The view from Wendell’s was breathtaking and I took a little longer than usual to finish my omelette, just staring out into the landscape and taking a minute to just breath.

Head out to Inn of the Mountain Gods this month and be part of the Pick Your Prize promotion every Wednesday. Use your Apache Spirit Club card from 6-10 p.m. Wednesdays for your chance to be a hot seat drawing winner. Prizes include concert tickets, a round of golf and up to $100 in free Spirit Play.

Also, take part in the Cash is King promotion that runs through the end of May. Two lucky winners are guaranteed to win $25,000 at Casino Apache Travel Center on May 29 and at Inn of the Mountain Gods on May 30. Twelve winners will be drawn throughout the promotion and will win from $500 to $25,000.

Just use your Apache Spirit Club card at any slot machine or table game to earn entries into the final drawing. Receive an entry with every 50 points earned on your card. Earn 10 times the entries every Sunday and swipe your card at a kiosk daily for 10 entries.

SANTA ANA STAR CASINO: The saying goes “diamonds are a girl’s best friend,” but this April, everyone will want their share during the Dazzling Diamonds promotion. Earn entries now through May 24. Drawings will be held at 8 p.m. each Saturday. Star Rewards Club members receive one entry for every 1,000 points earned or one hour of table play. Each week three people will win a chance to return for the grand prize drawing on May 24. During the grand prize drawing each person will win his or her share of $40,000 worth of diamonds.

Also this month, pick an egg during April “Hop” Seats from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Two winners will be selected each hour. Each winner will receive $100 and additional food prizes. And, try your luck during the free slot tournament from noon to 8 p.m. every Thursday. Earn an additional entry each week for 500 points or one half-hour of table play.