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Let Me Welcome Everybody

Published March 22, 2022

“In the fashion business, you live in the future for the next collection,” fashion designer turned screenwriter and director Tom Ford told the Wall Street Journal in the fall of 2009. “But when I spend time on my ranch in New Mexico — with the sun above me and the rattlesnakes growing under the bush — I appreciate the present.”

There’s a lot of, uh, present to appreciate on that ranch, which Ford bought in 2001. The Cerro Pelon Ranch (in English, it’s the way less picturesque “Bald Hill Ranch”) stretches across more than 20,660 acres or around 32 square miles, just east of Santa Fe. The sleek, modernist home on the property was designed by acclaimed architect Tadao Ando, and it’s accompanied by two guest houses; a ranch manager’s house and assorted staff quarters; an eight-stall horse barn and other “equestrian facilities”; a tennis court; and an aircraft landing strip. 

On top of that, there’s also an entire honest-to-God Western movie set, which was built for the 1985 Kevin Costner flick Silverado. In the decades since, the set has been used for other films, including All the Pretty Horses, Cowboys and Aliens, 3:10 to Yuma, and Thor. (It was also accidentally burned down during the filming of Wild Wild West, and had to be rebuilt.) 

Ford eventually grew tired of the sun and the rattlesnakes and the present, and he put the ranch up for sale in 2016, with an eye-watering $75 million asking price. Three years later, he decided he’d be willing to take a meager $48 million, and the property sold for an undisclosed amount in December 2020. According to the Santa Fe Association of Realtors, the sale is “believed to be the highest known property sale in Santa Fe County.” 

The unnamed buyer apparently wanted to upgrade their workspace during the pandemic, and decided that instead of just downloading a new Zoom background, they’d drop eight-figures on 32 square miles of ranch. “They wanted space, safety and the beauty of New Mexico,” real estate broker Neil Lyon of the Neil Lyon Group at Sotheby’s International Realty Santa Fe told the Santa Fe New Mexican. “This transaction was most definitely driven by the pandemic. People who have the ability to move want to be where there isn’t density. Working remotely is a game-changer for many.”

Yeah, Neil, it sure is. You think your buyer would let us borrow a tumbleweed? It’s probably bigger than our apartment. 

Check out our latest Video Rewind video which features “Wild Wild West.” We’re not sure if the scene we chose happened before or after they burned down the joint.

Featured image courtesy of: Nicogenin, Creative Commons Share Alike 2.0 Generic