The goal in our business is to receive an award for each home we build! We want that award to come from the Homeowner. The award takes the shape of happiness in their faces as they move into their home, as they make the house a home by decorating it with their personal touches, and by having a party, dinner or tea in that home with them after they have moved in!
Unlike larger cities Las Cruces does not offer many opportunities for “housing” awards. It offers many opportunities for awards of the heart! We are thankful for the following acknowledgements of our work:
- U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Silver Home Certification. The first home in Las Cruces to receive this designation.
- The Dona Ana County Historical Society recognized Soledad Canyon Earth Builders with their Annual “Buildings Adhering to Regional Architecture” award. The award acknowledges the efforts of Soledad Canyon Earth Builders to create architecture which is aesthetically pleasing with our Southwestern environment, as well as recognizing the best in new designs in the area.
- The Las Cruces Home Builders Association honored both Pat Bellestri-Martinez and the late Mario Bellestri as “Builder Member of the Year Award” for their contribution to the organization in serving as President, and the numerous committees and activities over the years.
- The New Mexico Home Builders Association awarded Soledad Canyon Earth Builders the Las Casitas Housing Excellence Awards in two categories: Best Green Custom Home Award and Best Website
- The Dona Ana Arts Council recognized Soledad Canyon Earth Builders with the Architectural Design Award. The award acknowledges the efforts to create architecture in the Community which is aesthetically pleasing with our Southwestern environment, as well as recognizing the best in new designs in the area.
- Mesilla Valley Habitat for Humanity – SCEB was recognized for sponsoring a Habitat Home at 1424 Duranzo, the first Rammed Earth Habitat home in the country.
We offer the highest praise for Soledad Canyon Builders. From the time of our initial visit, when we just getting to know the Las Cruces area and attempting to decide whether or not to retire there, to our first visit to our completed home, we were sure that our decision to choose them as our builders was the correct one.
Mario was terrific in working with us on the layout of our home starting with our initial drawing (a sketch about the size of a match book) right through to our final blueprints. He drove us around and helped us find the land that we ultimately purchased and then presented the various options for the placement of our home on that land. Mario maintains his own crew for all of the rammed earth construction and uses the same sub-contractors for electrical, plumbing, HVAC, etc. for each home he builds. These close relationships really insured good coordination throughout the construction process. He was there every step of the way as construction proceeded.
Pat and her staff were key for everything else. Bill and I were still working and residing out of state as the planning and construction process proceeded. Pat walked us through every step of the thousands of decisions that needed to be made before we could start construction. Making the big decisions like on flooring, and granite were relatively simple, but the smaller ones like knobs for cabinets or lighting fixtures in the garage, seemed to never end. Pat coordinated the decisions limiting the number of visits we needed to make to New Mexico.
Once all of these decisions were made, and only then, were we presented with the final cost of the house. Once we approved all of the expenses, all bills and payments were rigorously overseen by both Mario and Pat. We saw all of the bills as they were paid and there were no surprises as the building proceeded.
Our friends thought were crazy not to be here when our home was being built but our confidence in Pat and Mario was well placed. They outdid themselves. We love our home and would not change anything about it or the process of getting it built and we now consider Pat and Mario to be our good friends.
Sally Williams and Bill Perry
Read what magazines are writing about Soledad Canyon Earth Builders, their clients and their homes.
For years, the lot on the corner of Armijo Street and Court Avenue remained untouched, becoming one of the only vacant lots in the historic Alameda-Depot District. Like a blank canvas waiting to be painted, the property sat in limbo as its surroundings changed. Bought by William and Kathryn Stowe in the 1970s, it was their son Bill Stowe and his wife Jeannie who would finally alter the in-fill lot. With the help of Soledad Canyon Earth Builders, Bill and Jeannie Stowe constructed one of the most energy-efficient homes the historic neighborhood has seen to date. read more…
Those who spent their weekend touring the Las Cruces Home Builders Association Spring Showcase of Homes might have visited a unique home built by Mario and Pat Bellestri, owners of Soledad Canyon Earth Builders.
While 4311 Isleta may look like an ordinary house, this rammed-earth home is very much in a category all its own. According to Mario Bellestri, this is the first home in New Mexico to incorporate Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards. read more…
American Solar Energy Society
Build Green NM
Downtown Las Cruces Partnership
Greater Las Cruces Chamber of Commerce
Las Cruces Home Builders Association
National Association of Home Builder
New Mexico Green Chamber of Commerce
New Mexico Home Builders Association
The Earthbuilders’ Guild
USGBC New Mexico Chapter