A Local Expert Guide to the most important elements of Los Cabos, Mexico.
Los Cabos has a distinctively rich variety of elements that make it one of the most dynamic destinations in the world. Most Destination Specialists will claim that there is no comparison to Los Cabos, simply due to the unique climate that graces the tip of the Baja. Known as a ‘Mountainous Tropical Desert’, Cabo offers a wide variety of plants, animals, variations in altitude and gorgeous vistas in almost every direction. This alone is one of the reasons that leading industry experts choose Cabo for Golf, Fishing, Diving, Off-Road Racing, Equestrian, Dining, Nightlife and Living!
Cabo San Lucas Villa Rentals are located in five distinctive areas:
1.Pacific-side (including Migrino, Cerritos, Pescadero, and Todos Santos)
5.East Cape (Including Cabo Pulmo and La Ribera)
Regardless of where you and your family decide to stay during your Cabo vacation, Cabo Platinum will provide a personal concierge that will assist with everything. From booking chefs, to yachts, delivering groceries and in-villa massage; your concierge will be able to help you with all of the best services in your area.
Pacific-side of Los Cabos
Most locals will agree the Pacific-side of Los Cabos is best known for the artist and culinary colony of Todos Santos. Home to the annual Mango Festival and monthly art walks, this quaint town is a fun authentic-Mexican experience for a group day trip. Along the way, you can stop at Arts & Beer for local crafts and strong cocktails. Hierba Buena Restaurant is a farm-to-table experience and its location puts guests in the middle of the fertile lands of Pescadero. And the famous Cerritos beach is home to beginner’s surf breaks and the Legendary Hacienda Cerritos Hotel, which sits on a prestigious rock formation, hovering above the crashing Pacific-waves below. A tour of the pacific-side is always recommended to end at the Hotel California for a margarita and fresh ceviche. And many people searching for local artisan’s handmade crafts at great prices will find plenty to choose from in this quaint downtown, that is great for walking and meandering in and out of boutiques. And if you are searching for a peaceful cove to enjoy the calm waters of the Pacific-side, Punta Lobos hosts the Hotel San Cristobal that is complete with a beach lounge, restaurant, and consistent surf break. With credit to Liz Lambert’s creative entrepreneurship, this Bunkhouse hotel offers a restaurant, bar, library and small retail shop.
When looking for a great dinner on the Pacific-side, turn to El Mirador, an organic farm-to-table restaurant above the hotel, that provides an incredible sunset. Also, Free Souls provides a great menu and if needed, a small pool to cool off in-between courses. Some of the new Cabo San Lucas Villas construction projects we’ve heard a lot of buzz about are Tres Santos, La Poza, Cerritos’ Surfside Residences, San Cristobal, Villas de Todos Santos, and La Cachora in Todos Santos.
While driving from Todos Santos to Cabo, you will pass large luxury developments, one of which is Rancho San Lucas: a massive mixed-use development, which will be home to the new Greg Norman signature golf course and Norman Beachfront Estates. This property boasts full-ownership residences, a hotel, restaurants and a fully equipped spa. The various areas of the property are The Villas, Norman Beachfront Estates, Grand Solmar Beachfront Residences, and the Grand Solmar Beachfront Resort & Spa. Since this community is owned and designed by legendary golfer, Greg Norman, it will include one of the most competitive courses and golfing facilities in Los Cabos. Golf lovers will be pleased with the 18-hole championship course, expansive practice range, and clubhouse. Another great area of Rancho San Lucas is the Mexico Village, where you will find colorful and cultural dining, shopping, and entertainment. You can also enjoy a community park that includes a 15-acre lake, hiking trails, sports complex, and a tennis center.
Diamante Golf & Resort Community
Just north of San Lucas is the Golf & Beach Resort Community of Diamante Cabo San Lucas. Besides being home to the first-ever 18-hole Tiger Woods’ golf course, “El Cardonal,” it also includes a 12-hole short course designed by Tiger himself. On the opposite side of the property, weaving through the Pacific-side sandy Dunes is Davis Love III’s “Dunes Course”. This Diamante Golf Course is flanked by two beachfront hotels: Hard Rock Hotel and Nobu Hotel. Diamante Cabo San Lucas also boasts a massive 10-acre crystal lagoon. The Diamante Lagoon hosts community residents and club members with SUP boards, paddle boats, kayaks, beach sports, a swim-up bar and one of the best exercise facilities in Los Cabos, designed by local favorite Personal Trainer and Fitness Coach, Modu Seye. (Modu is also available for personal training in your villa – ask your concierge for additional details). The different subdivisions within Diamante are Ocean Club Residences, Golf Villas, Sunset Hill Estates, The Diamante Beach Estates, The Casitas, and Dunes Club Penthouse Suites.
Following the beach from Diamante to Cabo will have you pass through a long Cabo beach community called Quivira, which will prove to be one of the most underrated beach properties in Los Cabos, Mexico. Founded by Ernesto Coppel in 1997, this 3-mile stretch of beach is home to the 14 different mixed-use communities, including multiple hotels, time-share, fractional, full-ownership, and long term rentals. The full-ownership residential communities include the Copala Residences & Condominiums, Coronado, and the Private Residences at Montecristo. The fractional-ownership residences are Novaispania and Montecristo Estates. There are three resort communities in Quivira and soon-to-be a fourth: the adults-only Pueblo Bonito Pacifico, family-friendly Pueblo Bonito Sunset Beach, full-service Towers at Pacifica, and the 120-room St. Regis set to open in 2021. Also coming online and currently available for pre-sales are the Lighthouse Estates, which are phenomenal estate-size home lots that sit looking out over the Jack Nicklaus golf course and the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean below. Our Real Estate team continues to see the long-term value in this property as the developer is consistently improving the community, installing new amenities and adding new communities to provide a full product offering.
Being home to Jack Nicklaus’ most incredible creation to date, the Quivira Golf Course is an astonishing 18-holes that wraps itself around a rocky mountain. A few of the holes are located on craggly cliffs and 200-ft above the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean. While some golfers say Quivira is “the Mickey Mouse of golf,” we tend to enjoy the incredible sights from almost every hole and the creation of an alternative approach to a creatively different side of golf. We also can’t help but make sure we mention the comfort stations that provide an open bar, baja tacos, sliders, sit-down table service and a “lookout,” which is one of the best whale watching locations in Mexico. Sorry golf haters, the look-out is only for playing members and is located 0.5-miles up the side of a mountain on a golf cart path, which is complete with rocky bridges and industrial-strength storm preparation. Although this beach is phenomenal for long walks and will be the future home of the St Regis Hotel, the Ocean is dangerous for intermediate swimmers and extreme caution should be observed while spending time near the water.
The drive from Cabo San Lucas Marina to Todos Santos will take approximately 45 minutes. Since the government built out the 4-lane highway, this is one of the most beautiful drives, during most months of the year. On either side of the highway, drivers can see rolling hills filled with lively flora and fauna, juxtaposed with an incredible Pacific-Ocean, baja coastline. This is truly an adventure we recommend to spend a half-day and enjoy the varied culinary experience, scenery and people.
Exploring Cabo San Lucas
What most people refer to as Cabo San Lucas is known to locals as “San Lucas.” Some people refer to this area as the ‘party side of Cabo' or ‘Cabo Spring Break,’ while the Municipal side of San Jose del Cabo is quite a bit more mature. San Lucas is a great destination for large groups as there is a multitude of restaurants, shopping, nightlife, live music, activities and all kinds of events to see and do. From surfing competitions to ATP Tennis tournaments, concerts, food expositions, Cabo Farmer’s Markets, and local community events; San Lucas is rarely described as a sleepy town. You’ll know this as you walk the marina and are offered glass-bottom boat tours to see the Arch and Lover’s Beach, fishing excursions, Booze Cruise’s and/or tickets to an event downtown. If you get tired of the hassle from the “pushy” salesmen, we always recommend you tell them two words: “Somos Locales!” In Spanish, this tells the hagglers that you are a local and motivates them to move onto another unsuspecting tourist, instead of wasting their time with someone who has no interest of buying what they are selling.
If you are looking for some of the best restaurants, we always recommend locations that are close to the beach: Edith’s, The Office, El Farallon, Don Manuel’s, Manta at the Cape Hotel and Hacienda Cantina y Cocina. We also recommend great fare inland, from restaurants that have grown over the years and expanded their walls to accommodate Cabo’s growing group of fans that seem to stay longer each year they come back. These local establishments have generations of family recipes, rich local history, and are usually family-owned and operated. You can access this food and fare in locations such as Los Tres Gallos, Maria Corona, Alcaravea, Pintada, and Sunset de Mona Lisa. And after dinner, we recommend an incredibly electric staged show at the Coco Bongo. Opened to the public in July 2019, Coco Bongo is a popular theater production and nightclub that is a wildly entertaining event and lasts until 3 am (for ages 18 and over).
DOWNTOWN CABO BEACHES
If you’re headed to the beach, you are in for a treat! San Lucas hosts one of the best swimmable beaches in the Baja: Medano Beach. With the soft sand running along with the calm current for almost 4 Kilometers, Medano Beach is the most active area in Los Cabos. With restaurants, beach bars, hotels, and full-ownership luxury communities, this beach is an Active Cabo Lover’s Paradise. Complete with activities such as SUP boarding, jet skiing, parasailing, kayaking, volleyball, surf fishing and more; you will always get a good dose of entertainment when walking from one end to the other. You can also use a panga boat, cross the marina and end up at the quieter side, near the Navy base and in front of the historic Cabo Cannery. Just beyond this dilapidated building is Pelican rock, lovers beach and the famous Arch, known as “El Arco.” Every four years the tide changes and El Arco exposes sand underneath. Many travelers think of it as a romantic beach walk, but some have died trying and it is a dangerous place to adventure. Taking it one step further, around the rock formation is Divorce Beach. This area is extremely dangerous and has sleeper waves that sweep unsuspecting tourists out to sea. Stay on the Lovers Beachside and never turn your back to the waves.
Another one of San Lucas’ favorite beaches is Pedregal Beach. This pristine Cabo beach is located on the Pacific-side and kept secret within the private cliffside community of Pedregal Cabo San Lucas. It is important to know that ALL beaches in Cabo are public. No person or company can block anyone from accessing the beach. While Pedregal has two guard gates at two separate entrances, neither can stop you when telling the security you are going to the beach. And if you are going to Pedregal Beach, bring a spouse or significant other as there are rocks at either end to hide away and steal a romantic moment. Bring your camera as these rocks provide some of the most incredible photo opportunities you’ll ever have the chance to take. Many of Cabo Platinum’s employees and families have taken their annual family photos on this beach and we highly recommend it. Many people will also bear witness to model shoots for international calendars, magazines, and advertising campaigns. You can also bring a fishing pole and catch dinner directly from the shore. Visit during one of several special moments throughout the year and you’ll witness the release of baby turtles, whose eggs were laid, collected by local preservationist, incubated, and then released back into the ocean – only to return 40 years later and begin the cycle all over again.
Cabo San Lucas Villas - Our Recommendations
We recommend family-friendly Cabo San Lucas villas in security guard-gated communities that include Pedregal Cabo San Lucas, Hacienda Beach Club and Residences (otherwise known as “Hacienda Cabo Resort”), Villa La Estancia, Rancho Paraiso, and Santa Carmela. If you need a restaurant that will leave a lasting impression in Cabo San Lucas, you can never go wrong with El Farallon, Don Manuels at Waldorf Astoria, Hacienda Cantina y Cocina, Los Tres Gallos, Edith’s and The Office. For Family Friendly Cabo San Lucas Restaurants, we also recommend La Pintada, Al Caravea and KOI Sushi at the back of the food court in the Walmart Plaza.
Cabo San Lucas "Tourist Corridor"
Traveling from San Lucas to San Jose will have you driving through The Tourist Corridor. This 25-Kilometer stretch of highway runs through multiple stores, markets, hotels, and luxury beachfront communities. A few of the notable developments you will pass driving from Cabo to San Jose are Esperanza Resort, Punta Ballena, Cabo del Sol, Montage, Maravilla, Chileno Bay, Blue Sea, Solaz, Punta Bella, Querencia, Cabo Colorado, Villas del Mar, Espiritu, and Palmilla. In addition, The Corridor is home to beachfront resorts such as Marquis, Hilton, Le Blanc, Grand Velas, Garza Blanca, Villa La Valencia, Cabo Surf Hotel and the legendary One&Only Palmilla. This long stretch of highway also provides access to two of the best snorkeling beaches in Cabo: Chileno bay beach (safe and swimmable year-round) and Santa Maria Cove, which is home to the Montage resort and a variety of delicious restaurants that provide fresh seafood and hand-crafted cocktails. The third most visited beach, El Tule surfing beach, is extremely accessible as you will find many locals driving their vehicles close to the action and parking directly on the shore. During the holiday of Semana Santa, El Tule Beach appears similar to a Beatles concert at Wembley Stadium; it is jam-packed with people celebrating the multiple-day holiday, which is Mexico's tribute to Easter.
If you find time for a break-away from the Kids/Family and muster up a night for a romantic dinner for 2 in Cabo, we highly suggest Comal Restaurant at the Auberge Chileno Bay Resort and Spa. The restaurant perched above the crashing waves with the rocks jutting out into the sunset makes Chileno Bay one of the most incredible sunset vistas in the Baja. Our highest appreciation for the local team at RED development group and Los Angeles-based Gulla Jonsdottir Architecture & Design, for their incredible creation. Their collaborative effort created one of the most magnificent beachfront paradises on one of our favorite swimming beaches. Make sure you arrive with plenty of time to watch the colors in the setting sky while sipping a smoky mezcal cocktail. Like all those before you, a magically colorful sunset over the Sea of Cortez will have you fall in love with Chileno Bay Resort.
Whether you take private transport or drive from Cabo San Lucas to San Jose del Cabo, the Tourist Corridor will provide activities such as Wild Canyon zip-line & ATV adventure and Cuadra San Francisco equestrian center—complete with horse riding and professional horse jumping facilities. In addition, Zippers surf break and multiple canyon/arroyo entrances to 1,000s of Hectares for Baja off-roading and trailblazing. Additional activities will host golfers as they find their paradise in courses such as Cabo del Sol by Jack Nicklaus and Tom Weiskopf, Chileno Bay by Tom Fazio, Cabo Real by Robert Trent Jones II, Palmilla by Jack Nicklaus, Puerto Los Cabos by Greg Norman and Jack Nicklaus, and Querencia by Tom Fazio.
If you are looking for the best beachfront Cabo villa, then you have found it with Villa Serena in the Tourist Corridor. This villa privately sits between large resorts and is one of three beachfronts in a small guard-gated residential community. With sweeping views from the villa’s kitchen to the Sea of Cortez, the beachfront Villa Serena has direct steps to the sand where villa renters can
• Play in the sand
• Swim in the Ocean & Watch whales from the shore (during certain months of the year)
Villa Serena comes complete with a butler, daily housekeeping and Platinum Signature Personal Concierge.
The municipal and historic city of San Jose surrounds the downtown arts district. On Thursday nights (when in season), the downtown erupts with activity as artists open their doors and street performers play music and dance throughout the city streets. Downtown culinary selections abound with restaurants such as Tequilas, Don Sanchez, La Lupitas Tacos & Mezcal and Baja Brew. For Farm-to-Table options, hungry groups will love Tamarindos, Flora Farms and Acre. The farm-to-table options are great for large group events, cooking classes and walks around the property. Each of these farms provides fresh produce and poultry to a large portion of the Los Cabos community. The various properties’ restaurants also benefit from the close proximity of the Fisherman’s Dock and their fresh daily catch which are reeled in daily at the mouth of the Puerto Los Cabos Marina. One visit to the docks will show visitors the variety of sea life that local fishermen catch every day.
Flora Farms hosts multiple music and arts events throughout the year – make sure you compare their calendar with your travel dates to see if there is a live concert or charity event during your visit. Traveling to the farm will be complete with a Sanchez jewelry boutique, James Perse fashion store, wine shop, café, and Eclectic Array, which is a classy clothing and handcrafts store featuring authentic-Mexican artisan goods, clothing, and jewelry. Flora Farms has been featured in Forbes Magazine, Travel & Leisure, Robb Report, and is a phenomenal choice for weddings, bachelorette parties, and family gatherings.
San Jose Nightlife
Visitors staying in San Jose and seeking a similar experience to Cabo nightlife, will enjoy day club pool parties, live music, and DJ-hosted events. Most visitors staying near the historic town of San Jose can't go wrong with the OMNIA at the Hakkasan Resort. This “Vegas-style” pool party and live music venue, located in the San Jose Hotel Zone, provides party groups with great restaurants such as Casa Calavera and El Fish and Grill. Pool parties have hosted internationally acclaimed DJs such as David Guetta, Calvin Harris, Steve Aoki, Zedd, Diplo, Dillon Francis, Illenium, and many more. The Vegas-style pool parties run into the late hours at OMNIA, which provides bottle service, VIP areas and a variety of local performing artists.
Puerto Los Cabos, Golf & Marina Resort
Traveling along the beach towards the East Cape will place travelers in the most North-Eastern portion of San Jose, which is Puerto Los Cabos. Complete with a marina, dolphin experience, and fishing village, Puerto Los Cabos is also home to the JW Marriott, Hotel El Ganzo, Secrets Adults-only All-inclusive Resort and the Ritz Carlton Zadun Hotel. In addition, the luxury villa development consists of three large communities: La Noria, El Altillo, and Fundadores. The Puerto Los Cabos 27-hole Nicklaus and Norman Golf Course meanders throughout the luxurious villa communities and includes a 5-star clubhouse, complete with restaurant, pro-shop, and Members Only Private area.
Many of the residents in Puerto Los Cabos say they chose to live in the community as they appreciate the access to the East Cape. Known as the “Wild West of the Baja,” the East Cape continues to be a developing area. Although it hosts several well-known surf breaks, boutique hotels, and restaurants, it has been a legendary area for surfers and beach lovers who “want to get away from it all.” Many people love the East Cape for surfing, shore fishing, ATVing, and camping. Locals will argue that it is still one of the most natural and untouched areas of the Baja. With so many hidden areas to enjoy the natural tranquility and pristine beach, Los Cabos East Cape is a true beach lover’s paradise.
Driving the East Cape Highway towards La Ribera will have you meandering past the Vidanta Hotel & Resort, Palo Escapeda Road (heading towards SJD airport), Vida Soul Hotel, and the famous diving area of Cabo Pulmo. Marked as a UNESCO Heritage Site, this wildly popular area is a deep-sea diving paradise. It is not clearly labeled, so ask your Concierge for a map or have them organize private transport for a day trip. Known as a surfer's paradise and amazing offshore fishing, the East Cape is a fascinating version of what Cabo once was before the installation of the large Resort concept. It is peaceful and serene. Daring and subtle. The East Cape of Los Cabos is an absolute retreat from the buzz of Cabo. Many people visit the East Cape to "get away from it all," while others are just out for an adventure. Please keep in mind that cell service is intermittent and you should be prepared with what you need for the day as there is very little presence of stores, gas stations or commerce.
A Complete Los Cabos Vacation
Your drive around the tip of the Baja in Los Cabos will be complete when you end up in La Ribera. Home to hotels such as Four Seasons and Rancho Leonero, this small, bustling town is in the works to create a world-class marina, golf courses, and multiple luxury communities. This area is growing so fast, we recommend you contact us for more info as our team receives new updates each week.
When you are planning your Cabo San Lucas Villas Vacation, there is no better way to experience the Crown Jewel of Mexico than renting a Luxury Cabo Villa. A villa vacation gives you the ability to have a private enclave to enjoy those most important to you and various areas to spend time with your friends and family; there is no comparison to the family memories made in a villa stay. Make your trip complete with a private chef, fully stocked kitchen, mariachi band at arrival, private transportation, a sunset yacht tour around Medano bay and our concierge will be on call just in case there is anything else your wishes desire.