“I wanted to connect with people,” says Victor Romero, the force behind the Facebook Page You Know You’re “Old School Santa Fe” When… It was the furthest thing on my mind for it to be a success.”
After being laid off, Romero, who’d been working since he was 13, decided to create a job for himself. He liked the name “Santa Fe VIP” but wasn’t clear what sort of business it should represent. “I wanted to …focus on nightlife, to try and bring better music to Santa Fe.” While waiting for his idea to cohere, Romero decided to play around with a Facebook page where people could share their stories about growing up in Santa Fe.
“There’s a jar of memories that people always open up when they get together. Remember this, remember that…. I tried to think of some things that, If you were going to prove that you were from Santa Fe New Mexico, you would know. My first posts were about the expression “A la Ver…,” Frito Pies at Woolworth’s, Cinnamon Rolls at Dee’s, and buying Z. Cavaricci’s at Dunlap’s.
From its launch date in late January, 2010, the membership of “You Know You’re Old School Santa Fe When…” rose rapidly into the thousands. Today, it’s over 5,100. Clearly, Romero had tapped into a local hunger. But as a former concierge with years of experience in the hospitality business, Romero is good at giving people what they want. And it was that combination of deep local savvy and strong service ethic that gave final form to the business known as the Santa Fe V.I.P.
The Santa Fe V.I.P. is an atypical visitor’s guide serving “the world traveler, local explorer and young professional” alike. Capitalizing on his connections and insider info, Romero offers a range of ways to make the most of “The Santa Fe Experience.” Daily blog “editorials” and the events calendar keep readers in the know. The V.I.P. site also archives dining tips, dating ideas and even hosts parties.
“It takes a special kind of person to be in the service industry,” says Romero, citing a combination of knowledge, passion and sensitivity as cornerstones of success.” Through The Santa Fe V.I.P., Romero lives to share the wealth of his beloved Santa Fe.