Travel

My Cabo Caper

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I have always been a little bifurcated in my vacation choices; should I go for a well-known hot spot with lots of daytime activities and a great nightlife dotted with celebrities, or should I select a quiet, unspoiled village location with interesting architecture and small art galleries to explore??

My Cabo Caper

Well, when you go to Cabo, Mexico you can indulge both of those urges. Situated on the southernmost tip of ‘Baja California’ in Mexico, Cabo is actually made up of two Cabos: Cabo San Lucas, which is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Mexico, and San Jose del Cabo, its quieter sister, situated a hop, skip and a jump down the beach.

My Cabo Caper

Sheraton Grand Los Cabos Hacienda del Mar

I recently vacationed at the Sheraton Grand Los Cabos Hacienda del Mar, which is conveniently located almost halfway between the two Cabos. The Sheraton is a destination in itself – situated on its own private, beautiful beach, it offers enough pleasures to keep you from wanting to leave. The hotel is designed in traditional Spanish style, with a cobbled courtyard and fountain greeting you upon arrival. Walk through the entrance and you are immediately looking at the Sea of Cortez and beyond to the Pacific Ocean.

My Cabo Caper

My suite was huge and lovely, cool even in the midday sun (and Cabo gets hot – it was 90 degrees in the daytime but comfortably warm in the evenings). My balcony provided another view of the ocean and my room came with all the comforts you could desire. The staff, led by the handsome, charismatic manager Ricardo Iriarte, were fabulous — responsive and friendly and eager to please. They really upped the fun quotient of the trip.

My Cabo Caper

My sweet suite at the Sheraton Grand Los Cabos Hacienda del Mar

On the first night at the hotel, my friends and I dined outside with the sound of the waves crashing on the beach below. The food was fabulous. We were entertained with live music – a talented young woman who sang a medley of songs that included covers of Amy Whitehouse and other more romantic fare, and who happily obliged specific requests. A tranquil start to this action-packed vacation.

My Cabo Caper

Tomatoes restaurant, in the Sheraton, has lots of fresh and healthy options

The next morning my friends and I started our day with a delicious breakfast at Tomatoes, another of the hotel’s restaurants. Their breakfast buffet is $30 per person and has a lot of fresh and healthy options. I had a bespoke omelet, paired with fresh papaya and other fruits.

My Cabo Caper

Glass-blowing demonstration

Feeling fully satiated, we took a quick ride to a glass blowing factory, where we watched gifted craftsmen make fantastic, multi-colored glass fish and vases. We were then each invited to create a piece of glass for ourselves. Most of my friends managed to produce pretty heart-shaped ornaments. My effort sadly looked more like The Blob, so I was happy to leave it uncollected at the end of the visit. From the glass factory, we made our way to Tequilera El Faro (a trip arranged by Tours R Fun) to learn how tequila is made, with a good deal of happy sampling despite the early hour.

My Cabo Caper

The famous Arco de Cabo San Lucas

From there we took a boat ride out to “The Arch”, more formally known as the Arco de Cabo San Lucas, a stunning rock formation that is a justly famed local landmark. The water was blue and clear and the glass-bottomed boat afforded glimpses of strange and beautiful fish. Cabo San Lucas is heaven for those who love to snorkel, dive, parasail, and jet ski. Whale watching is also a feature of the area in wintertime when whale pods visit the warm waters to bear their calves.

My Cabo Caper

SUR Beach House

My Cabo CaperBack on dry land, we were off to lunch at the gorgeous club, SUR Beach House, by Bar Esquina, situated on Medano Beach. From the outside, SUR looks as though it belongs on a Mediterranean island with its white-washed walls and thatched roof. Inside, the decor has a modern vibe and the club offers early morning yoga, sunbathing, stand-up paddleboarding and dining. But the best seats are, of course, under the white sun umbrellas on the beach.

The food is nothing short of fabulous, created by the chef Andres Bracamonte who we all, men and women alike, immediately developed a crush on. His culinary creations – an unlikely combo of Mexican, Peruvian and Asian – were a treat for all palates, especially when accompanied by handcrafted cocktails and complemented by the most delicious chocolate cake I have tasted in a long time (and I make it my job to taste as many chocolate cakes as I can before I die!)

Back to the hotel and, full of food as we were, we nonetheless happily accepted an invitation to attend a cooking class given by the hotel’s executive chef Manuel DeLuca. In spite of our groaning tummies, we paired off into groups and kneaded dough and chopped veggies and avocados and created a Mexican pizza – another surprising combination of culinary cultures. Who knew Italian and Mexican could find such delicious common ground! In spite of ourselves, we consumed the results of our efforts with great gusto.

My Cabo Caper

The hot pools at the Sheraton’s spa

At that point, some of my friends went for facials and massages at the hotel spa which they later told me were a relaxing afternote to the day’s activities. I opted to take a dip in the spa’s hot pools then meandered my way back to my room, opened the curtains to the ocean breezes and took a nap. Each to own, as the old lady said when she kissed the cow.

My Cabo Caper

De Cortez restaurant

We all assembled later to dine in the hotel’s 5-star Diamond Award-winning De Cortez restaurant overlooking (what else??) the stunning Sea of Cortez. More fabulous food (memo to self – take exercise classes or buy new pants when I get home), followed by wine and more wine.

My Cabo CaperAfter dinner we were treated to smores, which we consumed in a sand pit on the beach that the staff had dug out and lined with blankets. With the sound of the waves as a backdrop, smores soon turned to snores, as one-by-one we all started to doze off. Back to the room to ready ourselves for more fun and frolics the next day.

The next morning I rolled out of bed with the sound of the ocean and the salty air breezing through my windows. While some of my friends opted for a day spent doing an extreme version of zip-lining, a smaller group of us headed off to see the quieter side of Cabo.

Centered around a lovely old church, the village of San Jose del Cabo is filled with souvenir shops and small art galleries. It offers a peaceful vibe and plenty of window-shopping.

My Cabo Caper

Casa Don Rodrigo

Attracted by its appealingly authentic looking entrance, we discovered a restaurant and bar called Casa Don Rodrigo. We sipped our drinks and chatted with the owner as he offered us complimentary tastings of homemade guacamole and cheeses from his family farm and told us of his family’s history. He told us about how the building had been his family’s home for generations. It felt very authentically Mexican to be eating and drinking in someone’s former living-room. This bar is not to be missed if you visit San Jose del Cabo.

My Cabo Caper

ACRE: modern yet rustic… lush yet minimal

Another restaurant you simply must try is the award-winning restaurant/hotel called ACRE. Owned and managed by Cameron Watts and Stuart McPherson, and situated outside San Jose del Cabo, ACRE is also a 25-acre farm whose mission is to leave the land as unspoiled as possible, while providing dining and accommodations to discerning travelers looking for a different experience. The next time I’m in Cabo, I’m definitely going to stay in their treehouse hotel suites, built into the farm’s tall palm trees.

The entire property is stunningly beautiful. The cleverly lit garden of palm trees reminded me of St. Laurent’s Jardin Majorelle in Marrakesh. And the food was extraordinary. Altogether, a wonderful way to end a fabulous couple of days. And the end it was, for while some of my sturdier friends went off to drink tequila at the Sheraton’s Tequila Bar La Suerte, I finally admitted defeat and went to bed.

So whatever your fancy in terms of vacation choices, Cabo offers so much to do or not do that it will easily satisfy that fancy – it’s not hard to understand why it is fast becoming a must-go vacation spot for celebrities and non-celebs alike.

Frederica Pellman was born and raised in London, and educated at a private convent in Notting Hill Gate. She moved to the West Village, NYC with one of her sisters - they had no jobs, no contacts, no place to stay and virtually no money! After a brief but memorable stay at a hotel, they found jobs, friends and an apartment, and eventually husbands. She now she lives in Southampton and spends her time writing, walking, and working as a life coach.

46 Comments

  1. Sasha Rosswell

    My heart is pounding as I read your article! Whew! So excited! I’d like to swim with the gentle giants! Whale sharks perhaps?!

    • Demi Gregory

      I know how it feels! LOL! Sights of whale sharks are good but actually experiencing to swim with them is the BEST experience!

  2. Indeed a beautiful destination! I sincerely hope tourists take responsibility in taking care of Cabo’s environment while enjoying what it offers 🙂

  3. I guess Cabo is a great destination for travel / vacation! But the way I think this is also a perfect place to retire…

  4. I love quiet and peaceful spots! Cabo, Mexico can be my haven… I’m going to enjoy it for its serenity!

  5. Chanelle Lewis

    I enjoy snorkeling and exploring coral reefs! So, yeah, I’m going to plan my trip to Cabo very, very soon! Thank you for this interesting piece!

    • Berna Goodwin

      Snorkeling is the most magical experience for me! EXCITED!!!

      I wonder if the variety of fishes in Cabo is the same in Hawaii or Carribean?!

  6. Phillippe Salvatore

    I think Cabo is a perfect place to find peace and break from work-related stress.

  7. I’ve heard about Lover’s Beach from friends who were able to travel and visit Cabo, Mexico. I wonder why my friends say “you can get romantic there…” Did you have the chance to visit?

  8. Great photos! I think I’m going to enjoy hot pools at Sheraton’s spa! Very relaxing! Can’t wait to try it!!!

  9. Susan Griffith

    I’m a “momvoyager,” and as much as possible, I always bring my daughter with me when I travel. You opened my mind to Cabo, and I think it can give my daughter a pleasant experience with nature and me while creating a stronger mother-daughter bond.

    I just have one concern, is it a safe area to bring kids?

  10. I’m going to have my boyfriend read this article! I think we’re going to have the most romantic holiday in Cabo… ♥

  11. Emma Blackwood

    Cabo is perfect for me! Why did I say so?! Because I love nature! I’m sure I would enjoy that majestic rock formation! And thinking about chasing whales?! Oh, can’t wait to plan my Cabo trip!!!

    Thank you for this piece!

  12. Nathalie Winchester

    Through your article, I can imagine Cabo as a place “similar” with the Hollywood jet set. I think it’s gorgeous and glamorous!

  13. Christina Brown

    This destination is a must see location while in Cabo. A lot of history and fascinating rock formations.

    • Have you been? Do you have any recommendations for other places to visit while in Cabo?

  14. Lela House

    You convinced me 😉 Now the Sheraton is one of the main reasons why I will definitely go to Cabo soon. It looks incredible!

  15. Charlotte Gurley

    oh!! it is superb! I had a dream to see the whole world. This site gave me a really nice inspiration and I am going to fulfil this dream.

  16. Ashley Moore

    Brilliant write up, and I would like to say that these are actually one the most beautiful places to visit before you die. 🙂

  17. Alice Harris

    I am also interested in visiting Mexico, thanks for posting this. All of these places look magnificent. I really want to travel to Mexico. I would like to agee that seeing from your pictures that the Arco is a beautiful sight to see when visiting Cabo San Lucas. It was beautiful to go on sunset dinner cruise to see the arch and beaches.

  18. Elin Hanks

    Perfect! Thank you for writing something new! This is not an ordinary travel article!

  19. Sheraton is soooo lovely!

  20. Summer Ferrel

    I feel like Cabo is a magical place! Am I going to have the experience of my life in 3days/2 nights stay?

    • Frederica Pellman

      Cabo supplies the backdrop and the venues – just go and fill in the blanks. It truly is a beautiful place to have the experience of your life!

    • Well, there certainly are a lot of options, so as long as you plan well you can do all your favorite travel activities in Cabo.

  21. Alice Landon

    Through your article, I have imagined Los Cabos as a place with sophisticated luxury hotels, romantic vistas, and beautiful raw beaches.

  22. Emily Foulkes

    I think I’m going to try Sheraton’s spa experience. Can’t wait…

  23. Ziri Digne

    It feels like Cabo offers priceless memories and fantastic experience for the family. Will start planning our family trip and I’ll use your article as guide…

  24. Lacey-Jo Hargreaves

    Excellent piece! I discovered something great today. I think this is the place my friends refer to as “dual destination.”

    • Keisha Fry

      I agree! Worth the time! I read something new 🙂

  25. Alison Hayashi

    I’m sure I’m going to enjoy Cabo for its beaches and water activities. But I also love shopping when I travel, would you know of shopping malls or place to shop in the area?

    • Frederica Pellman

      My focus was on touring and eating/drinking but I am sure there are sites that can direct to shopping. There are also small boutiques and shops which I prefer as you are more likely to find something special or unique!

    • I feel you 🙂 “Retail therapy” is my way to relax. Whenever I travel, I’m always in search of unique designer items or precious jewels. I always want to have that “Pretty Woman” moment (hope you’re familiar with the movie) LOL…

  26. Diana Hewitt

    I’ve read about “Mango Deck” at Cabo San Lucas. Have you had the chance to visit? Or have you heard about it when you visited Cabo?

    • Frederica Pellman

      I did not go to Mango, but it is close to Bahia Sur, which I wrote about in the article. In that part of Cabo St. Lucas there are a bunch of cool, hot nightclubs and spots to eat and drink and you can easily hop from one to the next.

  27. Delilah Peyton

    I wonder about nightlife experience/activities in Cabo…

    • Mishale Brighton

      @Delilah Although not mentioned (and I haven’t visited Cabo yet), I think Cabo is perfect for parties, parties, and more parties! LOL

      @Frederica Stunning views! Thank you for sharing wonderful experience and great photos!

      • Nightlife is fun and exciting in Cabo, believe me 😉 I highly suggest you visit “El Squid Roe.” It is attracting tourists and party goers for its bright red roof, neon glow and quirky cartoon characters making the place impossible to miss. The club definitely define the nightlife in Cabo 🙂

  28. Ingrid Winston

    Whenever I’m on an “out of the country” vacation, I’m particularly interested with signature dishes / cuisines. Does Cabo offer a lot of eateries or restaurants?

    • Frederica Pellman

      Yes, with a wide range of prices and food choices. I particularly liked that Cabo offered cuisines that were a mix of Mexican with other cuisines such as Asian and Italian, rather than just straight up Mex.

  29. Amelia Beckons

    Aside from whales, am I going to encounter other sea creatures? Sea lions perhaps?! Just wondering…

    • Frederica Pellman

      I would imagine that it depends on when you go. Try the glass bottom boats or snorkeling to see the fabulous fish…

  30. Celine Carter

    I appreciate the picture you shared, but I’d love to “personally” see and experience that iconic attraction… “The Arch.” Can’t wait…

  31. Jae Medina

    Mmmm… I think I would love the hotel food while enjoying the view.

  32. Roberta Bennett

    Love your article, but do you have a suggestion when the ideal time to visit is? (Although I suppose, summer is perfect because of the beach).

    • Frederica Pellman

      Summer is ideal because that’s when everyone goes so it is a lively scene. However, if you prefer a quieter vibe, you could go in October when I went – the weather is still hot (90’s) but it is not as crowded. There is a small rainy season somewhere in there, but you can check that by googling weather in Cabo!

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