“It became this trifecta: gardens, farming and architecture. And then the pressure was on. We couldn’t use food that we were buying from Sysco Foods, it had to be food off this property and food from the Rio Grande River Valley. The land was challenging us to do the right thing, the place was challenging us to do the right thing.”
We’re in great company with Matt Rembe, second generation Owner and CEO of Los Poblanos Historic Inn and Organic Farm, iconic for it’s Santa Fe styled architecture and set in the heart of the Rio Grande River Valley amongst 25 acres of lavender fields, enormous cottonwood trees and lush formal gardens.
With a rich heritage and continued appreciation for sense of place, it has taken the Rembe family decades - since 1976 in fact when Matt’s parents first purchased a piece of the property to raise their four children - to reunite the properties and undertake a preservation plan to maintain the architecture, gardens and open farmland in perpetuity.
Today, Los Poblanos is seen as one of the most magnificent stays in the Southwest given its family focused values, tenured community involvement, locally crafted design, regenerative agriculture, field-to-fork dining and artisan lavender product line.
In this episode, Matt shares what it was like to grow up on this land, how his time away always seemed to call him back home, and how now he is looking forward to passing this stewarding responsibility along to the next generation.
[1:40] Matt looks back on what he coined a “Huckleberry Finn childhood”, growing up as the youngest of 4, working the farm when told to, otherwise having fun getting dirty exploring the great outdoors.
[3:50] Los Poblanos was always much more than a farm to Matt’s parents, Penny and Armin, once they discovered the historical significance of the buildings about the property originally designed by the “Father of Santa Fe Style” architecture, John Gaw Meem, dating back to 1932.
[8:00] Over the past 20 years Matt explains how his family took on the preservation of this property, starting as a 6 bedroom BnB to today, a multifaceted business boasting a 45 bedroom boutique inn, 25 acres of organic farms and formal gardens, artisan lavender product line, spa and wellness experiences, award winning casual fine dining, small batch distillery and craft cocktail bar, event space, retail shop and cultural programming.
[16:30] Matt explains his love for his home state of New Mexico, while being one of the poorest states in America, it is one of the richest in culture and community, and Matt feels a real sense of responsibility in playing his part.
[20:40] When you look out at the sprawling lavender fields, taking in their aromatic scent and blue-violet hue, realize there is much more to these flowers - as biodynamic, organic, low water use crops that create value added products for economic development.
[29:45] The intentional “Hide and Reveal” architecture and garden design of Los Poblanos is meant to evoke different feelings and heightened senses as you progress throughout the property’s “Cultural Landscape.”
[37:10] “What is the palette of the Rio Grande River? What is the flavor profile of this sense of place?” Learn how a collaborative effort by numerous Los Poblanos team members went into the distillation of their new western and lavender gins.
[46:00] Physical wellbeing is engrained in the culture at Los Poblanos and guests can experience it through the Hacienda spa, lavender products, wellness activities and daily interactions with others about the property.
[51:50] It is a collaborative community affair to create the Rio Grande Valley Cuisine that is constantly evolving out of Campo’s kitchen.
Visit For Yourself