When I visited Colleen Davidson and Shaan Minhas, owners of Casa Cuma Bed and Breakfast, they shared that some of their guests wanted to know more about the culture and Indian heritage of the area. Tourists explained that they walked around the Plaza, enjoyed the food and shopping, and thought the Town charming, but they wanted to know and learn more. They felt there were treasures in the area that were hidden to the occasional visitor.
I remarked to Colleen and Shaan that I once helped a tour group from Kalamazoo, Michigan arrange for a pottery demonstration and traditional Native meal at San Ildefonso Pueblo. All of the women on the tour said that it was the highlight of their visit to Santa Fe.
Upon hearing this story, Colleen and Shaan looked at me and said “Robbie, you should go into the tour business, and we’ll help you.” Thus, the seed for Cultural Treasures was planted.
About the Proprietor, Your Guide
I moved to Santa Fe in 1999 after spending decades in sales and marketing in Houston, Texas. I had visited Northern New Mexico and was enamored with the area for many years. As fate would have it, an opportunity opened, and I moved to Santa Fe and became employed by the premier art magazine “Santa Fean". As part of my daily business, I met and became acquainted with the Town’s art galleries and visited personally with the leading artisans and retailers in both Santa Fe and in Taos.
I was immediately drawn to adding pieces of art around my personal abode--visual delights that continue to bring me joy and unbridled happiness. When visiting my home, one would probably observe that I am an art collector
As the years progressed, my love for the artistic and creative spirit that fills this enchanted community grew. I became an artist myself and was honored with an exhibition of my drawings and art dolls at the former Santa Fe PS in the Design Center in October, 2010. I am a graphite artist who loves No. 9 pencils.
Some say I am an excellent cook. I was reared in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where Cajun food is food fused with Mexican spice--quite a unique cuisine and fun to prepare and to witness others enjoy.
I place travel very high on my list--possibly my number one passion. I have experienced many remarkable adventures throughout Europe, England, Ireland, Canada, The Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, Alaska, Costa Rica, Mexico and throughout the United States.
I am a pianist having played the piano in the Baptist Church when I was growing up; I studied classical piano as an adult with Dr. Norma Auchter for many years in Houston. I also spend many hours reading--about 30 books a year.
Others report that I am a story teller and talker galore. My trademark is having what seems an endless supply of jokes, some a little naughty. Perhaps it is my storytelling and gift of gab that produced the inspiration for a Tewa name I was gifted by a dear friend from Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo: “P’a ‘ho”…. which means “one who laughs. I laugh as often as possible and who wouldn’t when there is white hair on one’s crown and you begin a new career!
I believe that Cultural Treasures is a culmination of my life, abilities, talent and sense of adventure… to bring people together to share meaningful, fun experiences and to embrace different cultures with joy, love and understanding.
I hope that Cultural Treasures tours will energize you to learn more, about Northern New Mexico, to read more and to fill your own spirit of curiosity with a renewed sense of appreciation that we are one on this planet.
"Robbie, thank you for a day that was the top highlight of our Santa Fe trip. You clearly love working with the artists and introducing others to their works of art. Visiting the artists' homes and seeing them create their gorgeous pieces is something few people experience, and we feel very fortunate to have done so. AND what a lunch you arranged with the Oviedos! We especially loved the bean and corn dish made from their own crops. Now we are spoiled."
Best of everything to you and Santa Fe Cultural Treasures,
Doug & Kathi Jones
"Santa Fe Cultural Treasures” offers a very unique experience both artistically and culturally, an opportunity not often available to a non-tribal member – an experience that one should not miss!
Ronald L Whatley AIA
"I wanted to thank you for giving me the Cultural Treasures tour. I loved it and will recommend it. Please see my blog post about it on our website."
-Amy, Bobcat Inn
"I think it was very nicely done. Both demos were great with a natural flow. Food was wonderful. She did a great job by having a vegetarian and spicy/no-spicy choices. Nicely done. Your tours are one of the best ecotourism activities in the area!" (Ecotourism: resonsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improved the well-being of local people.)
-Shaan & Colleen, Casa Cuma Bed and Breakfast