The Juan Gabriel estate | Residential market
THIS NAMBÉ PROPERTY ON THE MARKET IS ONE EMBODIMENT OF THE WORD “UNIQUE.” On its 40 acres is a rambling collection of buildings, adding up to 53 bedrooms and 46 bathrooms. One old house, known as the Jail House Ranch, is on the National Register of Historic Places. There’s also a beautiful chapel full of hand-carved benches, and a “Western town” section complete with a saloon.
The amalgamation is called Ivjohaje Ranch by its longtime owner, the famous Mexican singer Juan Gabriel. As Realtors James Delgado and Ted Rivera describe it, the property “is the product of many years of accumulation and transformation” by the man known as “El Divo de Juarez,” who has recorded at least 50 albums and has sold somewhere in excess of 30 million copies. James Espinoza, a personal representative for Gabriel, said the singer bought the property in 1988 and lived there for nearly a decade.
Tract 1 is 12.7 acres and holds the 3,000-square-foot main house (featuring a stunning outdoor kitchen and a solarium), several guest houses, the 1,050-square-foot chapel, the Western town, and a recording studio. The Jail House, 2,820 square feet on 2.25 acres, has four bedrooms and three bathrooms, six fireplaces, a swimming pool, and two guest houses. The Cable/Tucker house is 2,540 square feet on 2.4 acres. Additional tracts are mostly open land, some with acequias.
The entire property is being sold in “as is” condition. The various buildings range from comfortably livable to decidedly decrepit.
The history of this listing is deep and multifaceted. Much of it was part of an 18th-century country estate owned by Nicolás Ortiz III and his second wife, Josefa Bustamante, according to the book Old Santa Fe Today. Ortizwas killed by Comanches in 1769 and over the next half-century his heirs subdivided the land many times. Some of the parcels were purchased by Frenchman Juan (aka Jean) Bouquet, who gained renown for his orchard and his skill at fruit-tree grafting. Bouquet held a forage contract to furnish hay and grain for the U.S. military post in Santa Fe. He also operated a general store on the ranch.
Bouquet was a close acquaintance of Archbishop Jean-Baptiste Lamy and the bishop was a frequent visitor at the ranch. It was also popular with the military men from Santa Fe’s Fort Marcy, who prized its well water.
Bouquet Ranch was a stopping place for Hispanic residents on their way to celebrate the feast day at San Juan de los Caballeros, according to family research by philosopher and author Claire Ortiz Hill of Paris.
Juan Bouquet died at the ranch in 1898 and was buried there. It was inherited by his wife, Petra Larragoite de Bouquet, who was born in Santa Fe to Spanish immigrants Benito Larragoite and Feliciana Valdez. Petra was postmaster at Pojoaque for nearly half a century and was prominent in this area by virtue of her many associations, including with Loretto Convent’s Sister Magdalena. Ortiz Hill reports that Margaret Delgado de Ortiz (mother of Adelina Ortiz de Hill, a Santa Fe Living Treasure who died last October in the capital city) was a great-niece of Petra Bouquet and spent childhood summers at the Nambé ranch.
The Jail House Ranch house is named from the time during the 1930s when inmates fromthe state penitentiary were working on the Nambé road. Rather than take them back each evening, the prison guards jailed them in the main room of the house.
During the 1940s, the house on Bouquet Lane was owned by Dr. and Mrs. Thomas Shipman. Their neighbors were the Warings; Thomas Waring had been a teacher at Los Alamos Ranch School before opening his own school in 1939 on Upper Canyon Road in Santa Fe. The Waring School for boys moved to its new location next to the Jail House Ranch property in 1944. While well-regarded, it closed in 1950. At about this time, Pauline and Peter Cable owned one of the homes on what is now Ivjohaje Ranch. Itwas the Cables, partnering with metallurgist Martin Eden and designer Richard K. Thomas, who developed the special-alloy tableware known as Nambé Ware in the early 1950s.
This fascinating property is listed by James Delgado and Ted Rivera, Coldwell Banker Trails West Realty, for $2,950,000, but a few of the parcels may be obtainable separately.