One of the 20 suites at El Encanto de la Hacienda, the new addition at Hacienda Encantada Resort & Spa
During a roundtable discussion conducted by Travel Agent at Tianguis Turistico in Guadalajara in April, tourism professionals had many positive things to say about the outlook for Mexico’s vacation destinations. Los Cabos was prominent among them.
Jack Richards, president and CEO of Pleasant Holidays, noted that his company is “getting a bump from Los Cabos. We took a huge multimillion-dollar decline [after the hurricane], because the hotels were closed. Now they’re back, and it’s doing very well.”
Apple Vacations President Tim Mullen concurred: “The West Coast of Mexico has seen a nice rebound due to additional lift and the resurgence of the hotels after the hurricane in Cabo.” Michael Schmeltzer, president of American Airlines Vacations, also reported that, “Cabo is extremely strong.”
While MLT Vacations President John Caldwell was speaking of Mexico in general when he cited “an incredible amount of demand for summer coming out of places like New York and Los Angeles,” it’s worth noting that, for West Coast clients, Los Cabos has the added appeal of being a relatively short flight (about 2.5 hours) away. The destination can also be positioned as an alternative for East Coasters who have been to Cancun / Riviera Maya and are seeking a change of pace.
With all of the above in mind, here’s a look at recent and future developments in the Los Cabos resort scene.
Sheraton Grand’s Los Cabos Mexican Open tennis tournament packages offer a choice of Deluxe Room (pictured) or luxury suite.
Sheraton Courts Tennis Fans: The Sheraton Grand Los Cabos, Hacienda del Mar is offering special packages for the inaugural Los Cabos Mexican Open, August 8-13. As host hotel and hospitality headquarters for the prestigious tennis tournament, the Sheraton is able to offer tournament spectators luxury accommodations in addition to the best access to the event, as well as cater to the needs of the star athletes participating in the tournament. Six packages are available, with weekend or full tournament ticket options, in Platinum, Gold and Silver seating zones. Every package includes deluxe or luxury suite accommodations; a breakfast buffet; free Internet; gratuity for bell staff; and tournament tickets for each registered guest. Rates start at $340 per night.
The Kids Club at Grand Solmar provides a variety of activities, indoors and out, for young guests.
Solmar’s Summer Family Fun: Solmar Hotels & Resorts is offering new experiences for family and multigenerational travelers this summer. The diversity of fun and educational activities for children ranges from sand castle making and poolside games at Playa Grande Resort & Grand Spa’s Kids Camp to the Kids Club at Grand Solmar Land’s End Resort & Spa — complete with a mini theater area, life-size tree house and a schedule of activities, including clay sculpting, indoor yoga, kite making and T-shirt design. Other fun things to do include theme nights with treasure hunts, costumes and camp night stories on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
Adults can set aside some time to indulge in spa treatments or lounge on one of the resorts’ infinity pools complete with swim-up bars. All Solmar resorts offer suites with kitchenettes or full kitchens, privatization options such as gliding doors in master bedrooms, and a design aimed at conveying a home-away-from-home experience.
The whole family can partake in a Solmar Foundation tour, an activity that showcases some of the work Solmar does to give back to the less fortunate communities in Cabo. Participants visit several facilities, including schools, a senior center and animal shelters.
A dedicated team of Solmar concierge professionals can help plan activities in Los Cabos. The resorts are approximately a 10- to 15-minute walk from the marina, affording families the opportunity to experience an array of ocean activities, from snorkeling trips to Lovers Beach and kayaking expeditions, to whale sighting from September through March. Downtown Cabo San Lucas, where visitors can shop, dine and enjoy family walks, is also a short walk from both properties.
The Spa by Pevonia at Breathless Cabo San Lucas offers treatments that combine indigenous and modern techniques.
New Spa and Restaurant: AMResorts’ adults-only Breathless Cabo San Lucas Resort & Spa, currently celebrating its first summer season, introduced new wellness and dining options earlier this year. The Spa by Pevonia offers innovative body treatments, massages and facials that combine both indigenous and modern techniques. La Biblioteca de Tequila, a local concept restaurant from Chef Richard Sandoval, boasts one of the largest collections of tequila and agave spirits in North America to accompany its menu of authentic Mexican cuisine.
Hacienda Encantada Expansion: El Encanto de la Hacienda is the newest addition to open at Hacienda Encantada Resort & Spa, in time to welcome summer guests. The expansion comprises 52 oceanfront studio rooms and 20 multiple bedroom suites along with an adjacent terrace. Guests have access to an infinity pool with a swim-up bar, multiple restaurants and a new event space. Those staying in the new studios can also take advantage of all amenities at the main resort, such as all-inclusive dine-out privileges, a plan that enables guests to enjoy all on-site restaurants, in addition to several eateries in the downtown Cabo San Lucas marina, a.k.a. the Golden Zone.
Palmilla’s New Villa: The latest accommodation option at One&Only Palmilla is Villa One, which offers four bedrooms and an additional Butler Suite. Guests have access to 14,000 square feet of both indoor and outdoor space, including an infinity-edge pool and fire pit. Accommodations are a good fit for multigenerational families and larger groups as the Villa offers plenty of space and each bedroom comes in several different configurations. There is an 870-square-foot Master Suite, a second bedroom with a king-size bed and a sun deck, a third room with two queen-size beds and a fourth one with bunk beds.
Villa One also has a dedicated fitness trainer and spa therapist, while its culinary staff creates custom meals based on individual preferences. Additionally, the Villa Team can also design customized experiences, including deep-sea fishing excursions, full-day surf lessons and cruises on One&Only Palmilla’s Catari Yacht.
A ‘Grand’ Opening Set For November: Clients planning a winter vacation in Baja California Sur can opt for the new Grand Velas Los Cabos, which is set to open this November. A member of The Leading Hotels of the World, this all-inclusive resort will offer guests a choice of more than 300 rooms, including its top accommodation, the Imperial Suite. This suite will have more than 5,000 square feet of space with two bedrooms, a living room, bar and deck, and will come with a specific concierge, though all guests staying at Grand Velas will have personal concierges. That being said, those looking for the top view should plan to stay at the oceanfront Grand Class Suites.
Grand Velas will also have a spa with 16 treatment rooms, of which six will be for couples, while one will serve as a bridal room. Clients should be advised to reserve spa treatments a month in advance for stays from December through May.
Of the six on-site restaurants, four will have specialties, including French, Mexican contemporary, Italian and modern cuisine. For clients celebrating a special occasion, agents will be able to arrange a romantic dinner on the beach for travelers, but these reservations are not available yet; stay tuned.
Families are welcome at Grand Velas, which plans to have a club for kids and teens, as well as offering children’s treatments at the spa. There will also be a baby concierge department that will provide cribs, strollers and more items for the little ones. Best bets for families will be the Ambassador level; this category will include a large selection of connecting rooms.
Farther Down the Road
Montage Expands Outside U.S.: Slated to open late in 2017 on the shores of Santa Maria Bay, the Montage Los Cabos resort will occupy a 39-acre site adjacent to the exclusive private residential community Maravilla Los Cabos. The first Montage outside of the U.S. will have 122 guestrooms and suites, along with 52 Montage Residences. The new resort will also offer wellness programs and treatments at the signature Spa Montage, besides an array of fitness offerings that include the resort’s tennis and recreational lawn facilities, walk-in access to snorkeling and diving at Santa Maria Bay.
Other facilities will include two pools, multiple dining venues and Montage’s signature, immersive children’s program, Paintbox. With 6,100 square feet of indoor meeting space and events area, as well as multiple outdoor beach side function lawns, Montage Los Cabos will also serve as a suitable venue for destination weddings, corporate meetings and executive retreats.
Cachet Corazon Coming: The Cachet Hotel Group, in partnership with Cabo Villas Beach Resort and Spa, has chosen Medano Beach in Cabo San Lucas as the site for its first resort destination project, Cachet Corazon. The first hotel of this dual-branded development, the 77-room Cachet Beach, is expected to open late this year, followed by Cachet Deluxe in early 2018. The new resort will have views of the Sea of Cortez and will be along Medano Beach and within walking distance of Puerto Paraiso Mall, the Cabo San Lucas Marina and downtown, nightlife venues. The hotel will have multiple restaurants, pool terraces, a beach club and space for meetings and weddings.
Four Seasons Targets 2018 Opening: Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts has announced plans for a new luxury resort and private residences, Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos at Costa Palmas, opening in 2018 as part of the Costa Palmas resort community, which will also have a private marina and members-only beach and yacht club, all set along a two-mile stretch of white-sand beach and the Sea of Cortez. The 145-key resort will have multiple pools, indoor and outdoor event and wedding facilities, five dining outlets, an 18-hole Robert Trent Jones II golf course and a full-service spa. The property will be adjacent to a marina village with artisanal boutiques and additional dining options.