Hotel review: The Resort at Pedregal (Cabo, Mexico)

Wednesday newsletters always feature a luxury hotel and/or flight review.

Today (May 14, 2014): Review of The Resort at Pedregal, luxury reinvented in Cabos San Lucas (Baja California, Mexico).

The Resort at Pedegral, a premier luxury resort in Cabo San Lucas, is located at the southernmost tip of Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula. Encompassing 24 spectacular mountainside and oceanfront acres, the luxurious resort rests at the very point where the Pacific Ocean meets the Sea of Cortez, near the legendary rock formations known as Land’s End. The beach resort is reached via a 300-meter long tunnel that separates the hotel from the town of Cabo. The Resort at Pedregal features 66 luxurious bedrooms and suites, each with a private terrace and plunge pool as well as spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean.

The Resort at Pedregal also features in my top 10 list of the best health spas in the world.

In this review (more info below the slideshow):

  • Pros & things I like
  • Cons & things to know
  • My verdict
  • Tips for future guests & save money
  • Best time to visit
  • How to get there

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PROS AND THINGS I LIKE
  • Pre-arrival communication with the resort was wonderful. After I made my reservation via their website, the hotel staff contacted me for my arrival information (to arrange a private transfer), and one of the butlers arranged everything I wanted in advance.
  • The beach resort is reached via the only privately owned tunnel in Mexico, Dos Mares. Carved through the heart of the mountain, the tunnel is a 300-meter long engineering feat that separates the town of Cabo from the Pacific Ocean.
  • The location of the resort is very convenient: from the hectic downtown center of Cabo San Lucas, you walk or drive through the tunnel, before you arrive at the resort’s open air lobby. I did not like Cabo at all (too much of a party town totally lacking any style), but at the hotel you are residing in a world apart, which is all about serenity and tranquility. However, residents who want to experience true “Cabo culture” will find the vibrant shops, dining and entertainment of Cabo San Lucas village all within easy reach by foot, bike, personal auto or resort valet.
  • The setting of the hotel is quite spectacular. It is built at the base of an impressive rocky mountain, along a beautiful stretch of golden sand that fronts the rough Pacific Ocean.
  • One of the biggest pros of the resort is the very well-trained staff. They are omnipresent though very discrete, and will do all they can to make your holiday a big success.
  • The Resort at Pedregal features 66 luxurious bedrooms and suites, each with a private terrace and plunge pool as well as spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean. During my holiday, I stayed in a so-called “Ocean view Guest Room”  which featured plush bedding, handcrafted Mexican motifs, a relaxing rainfall shower, and a private terrace with picturesque Pacific views and infinity pool. The best part of the room was to relax in front of the open fire, enjoying the daily offered nachos with guacamole, and to listen to the breaking waves of the Pacific.
  • I tried several of the resort’s dining venues and overall, food is excellent. The signature restaurant (El Farallon) is expensive (as expected) and the food exquisite, but it’s the location (above the waves in the rocks) that will make for a truly memorable dining experience. The other restaurant (Don Manual) offers a superb breakfast buffet and also dinners here are excellents. I tried roomservice one evening, and while I did not expect much, I was utmost surprised by one the best Filet Mignons that I ever had.
  • From a sought after salon that offers world-class hair styling, treatments, nail services and makeup applications to massages, facials and body treatments to fitness and tennis capabilities, Luna y Mar Spa at The Resort at Pedregal promises a revitalizing escape for all our guests.

CONS AND THINGS TO KNOW

The resort is truly terrific and has no real cons. Nevertheless, I do want to share with you some issues that you need to beware of when considering a stay here: 

  • The location of the resort at the base of the mountain is stunning, but the mountain puts the resort in the shade in late afternoon in summer. In winter, this is not a problem, and you will have the added bonus of watching the sun set in the Pacific Ocean from the resort’s shore.
  • I had a very nice and private room at the most northerly located building of the resort. However, because of its orientation, these rooms (although they are the most private ones within the resort) only have sunshine on their terraces in the morning. If you want to relax in the sun on your private terrace in the afternoon, you will have to request or book a room located in one of the hotel’s two other wings, which enjoy a more southerly location with full sun exposure all day long.
  • The hotel has two magnificent infinity pools: an adult pool with a swim-up bar, and a family pool with a magnificent hot tub. It’s a pity though that the adult pool does not have a hot tub (when you want to use the hot tub, you have to make a short walk to the other pool). In addition, although the resort was only occupied for 30%, the family pool’s hot tub was often full with guests. An extra hot tub near the adult pool would be an added bonus.
  • The infinity pools are a visually terrific, but the pool water is not warm. I think the hotel should consider heating these pools, so guests can take a dip after sunset on the more chilly evenings.
  • Although it is quite well advertised when making the booking, keep in mind that all prices are subject to 15% service and 11% tax. Don’t be surprised!
  • While I was there, many cloud fields rolled in from over the Pacific Ocean, before being burned away overland. Since the Resort at Pedregal is an ocean front hotel, this resulted in often cloudy weather, while the rest of the corridor towards San Jose Del Cabo enjoyed full sunshine. This was a repetitive pattern for the week that I was there. I read on TripAdvisor that other reviewers complained about a similar weather pattern.
  • Both restaurants have live bands in the evening. Also, during the day, the pool bar plays loud music. I know this is just a matter of personal taste, but with the Pacific Ocean so close by, I would have preferred to listen to the waves instead of all the music. Not that it really bothered me and realize this caters to the hotel’s American clientele, but I would have preferred a music-free experience.

MY VERDICT
  • Location: 9/10
  • Design: 9/10
  • Rooms: 9/10
  • Food: 9/10
  • Service: 9/10
  • Overall experience: exceptional: 9/10

TIPS FOR FUTURE GUESTS & SAVE MONEY
  • Save money: read my tips for getting the best deal at a luxury resort like The Resort at Pedregal (and receive many free perks).
  • Save money: enjoy free VIP amenities when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. room upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, $100 USD spa credit, and complimentary VIP airport transfer with beachfront suite bookings).
  • This is the place to splurge for a spa service if you never had one before in your life.
  • Request a room in one of the two southerly located building if you want to lounge in the sun on your terrace.
  • In low season, the resort often offers free night promotions.
  • Read my tips for preparing your trip in time.

BEST TIME TO VISIT

The best time to visit Cabo is May and June, when the wintertime crowds have gone home and the summertime storms have yet to hit. Avoid July to September because of the hot, humid weather and frequent storms. October and November are also nice months for a vacation, but you’ll need to begin your hotel search early if you want to save money. It could be that your motivation for visiting is not the beach: If you’re into whale-watching, plan to visit between December and March. If you like to fish, look to come in the late summer or fall.


HOW TO GET THERE

The Resort at Pedregal is located a 45 minute drive from Los Cabos International Airport (SJD). The resort can provide airport-resort-airport private transfers, for guests who book at least 48 hours prior to arrival ($160 USD each way). The airport is served by the following airlines (click here for a direct link to their websites):

  • Air Canada: via Calgary, Vancouver (seasonal).
  • Westjet: via Calgary, Vancouver, and – seasonally – via Edmontin, Winnipeg, Kelowna.
  • Canjet: via Calgary, VAncouver, Kelowna, Hamilton, Toronto (seasonal).
  • Air Transat: via Montreal, Vanouver, Saskatoon (seasonal).
  • American Airlines: via Dallas, Los Angeles, and – seasonally – via Chicago.
  • US Airways: via Charlotte, Phoenix.
  • United Airlines: via Denver, Los Angeles, Houston, Newark and – seasonally – Austin, Chicago and San Fransisco.
  • Delta Airlines: via Atlanta, Salt Lake City and – seasonally – via Detroit, Minneapolis/St. Paul.
  • Alaska Airlines: via San Diego, Los Angeles, San Fransisco, San Jose, Seattle/Tacoma
  • Frontier Airlines: via Denver
  • AirTran Airways (operated by Southwest Airlines): via Austin.
  • Spirit Airlines: via Dallas, San Diego.
  • Virgin America: via San Francisco.
  • Aeromexico : via Mexico City, Monterrey and – seasonally ) New York JFK.

MAIN GATE
MAIN GATE
HOTEL LOBBY
HOTEL LOBBY
TUNNEL TO RECEPTION
TUNNEL TO RECEPTION
RECEPTION
RECEPTION
RECEPTION
RECEPTION
INFINITY POOL
INFINITY POOL
HOTEL POOL BAR
HOTEL POOL BAR
BEACH AND POOL
BEACH AND POOL
POOL AT SUNSET
POOL AT SUNSET
DON MANUEL'S WINE ROOM
DON MANUEL’S WINE ROOM
DON MANUEL'S OUTDOOR SEATING
DON MANUEL’S OUTDOOR SEATING
DON MANUEL'S LOUNGE
DON MANUEL’S LOUNGE
DON MANUEL'S DINING ROOM
DON MANUEL’S DINING ROOM
DON MANUEL'S BREAKFAST CORNER
DON MANUEL’S BREAKFAST CORNER
DONE MANUEL'S ALCOVE SEATING
DONE MANUEL’S ALCOVE SEATING
CRUDOS
CRUDOS
BEACH CLUB RESTAURANT
BEACH CLUB RESTAURANT
EL FARALLON SEASIDE GRILL
EL FARALLON SEASIDE GRILL
EL FARALLON TERRACE
EL FARALLON TERRACE
EL FARALLON SEASIDE GRILL
EL FARALLON SEASIDE GRILL
EL FARALLON PRIVATE DINNER
EL FARALLON PRIVATE DINNER
RESORT AERIAL VIEW
RESORT AERIAL VIEW
RESORT AERIAL VIEW
RESORT AERIAL VIEW
RESORT AERIAL VIEW
RESORT AERIAL VIEW
OCEAN VIEW ROOM
OCEAN VIEW ROOM
OCEAN VIEW DELUXE ROOM
OCEAN VIEW DELUXE ROOM
ESTRELLA SUITE
ESTRELLA SUITE
CAPELLA BATHROOM
CAPELLA BATHROOM
CAPELLA ROOM UPPER UNIT
CAPELLA ROOM UPPER UNIT
CAPELLA ROOM PATIO
CAPELLA ROOM PATIO
CAPELLA ROOM LOWER UNIT
CAPELLA ROOM LOWER UNIT
BEACH CASITA ROOM
BEACH CASITA ROOM
BEACH CASITA LIVING ROOM
BEACH CASITA LIVING ROOM
BEACH CASITA BEDROOM
BEACH CASITA BEDROOM
PEDEGRAL SUITE PATIO
PEDEGRAL SUITE PATIO
PEDEGRAL SUITE BEDROOM
PEDEGRAL SUITE BEDROOM
PEDEGRAL SUITE BATHTUB
PEDEGRAL SUITE BATHTUB
PEDEGRAL BEACH BON FIRE
PEDEGRAL BEACH BON FIRE
SPA SWIMMING POOL
SPA SWIMMING POOL
SPA SWIMMING POOL
SPA SWIMMING POOL
SPA RELAXATION ROOM
SPA RELAXATION ROOM
SPA RECEPTION
SPA RECEPTION

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