What Happens in Cabo, Stays in Cabo
For the past couple of years, I’ve been lucky enough to spend an adult spring break aka a “Mexication” with some of my favorite friends from college. We only have a couple of requirements when choosing a resort destination– it must have good tequila, 24-hour room service and expansive bathtubs. We’ve stayed at some of the most amazing places and made fantastic memories.
This year our travels led us to the Marquis Los Cabos in sunny Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
There is no denying that travel to the Baja California Peninsula is kind of a pain from Cleveland. The major carriers will hustle you through Chicago, Dallas, Houston and sometimes New York. For this trip, we selected a short layover in Dallas with American Airlines.
Some of our group were traveling from Dallas and were able to jump on a quick, perfectly timed direct flight.
Where to Stay
This wasn’t our first trip to Cabo San Lucas, as we’ve previously stayed at Secrets Puerto Los Cabos, but for this trip, we decided on the Marquis Los Cabos in San Jose Del Cabo. This is an adults-only property built into the cliff-side with amazing views and huge infinity pools.
The Marquis Los Cabos is a member of the prestigious Leading Hotels of the World organization which recognizes luxury properties that “meet the most exacting standards with respect to accommodations, service, cuisine, employee behavior and facilities – in short – all aspects affecting guest comfort, convenience and mood” (according to their website). We’ve stayed at 3 other LHW properties and they all do exactly what they claim.
We found our Junior Suite to be pretty and well-appointed with a beautiful view of the ocean. The bed was comfortable and we liked that the closet was huge with plenty of storage space. This room also had the best snacks of any resort we’ve stayed at – the different chip options were much appreciated!
What to See
Pools & Relaxation
Stunning is the most appropriate word to describe the Marquis Los Cabos. The layout of the resort with multiple levels allowed for lots of outside eating and drinking. The design of the buildings was a beautiful backdrop for our relaxing days (and Instagram pictures!) – nothing but white walls, gold sand and blue water.
Since we traveled during migration season, Humpback Whales swam around in front of the hotel every day – some of our group got to see a baby whale playing along the shallow water’s edge!
The infinity pools are well designed, although they were a bit chilly on the days where the temp dropped below 75 degrees. We never had a problem finding lounge chairs, even on days when the hotel was busier.
Marquis Los Cabos Spa
I didn’t get a treatment at the spa this trip but we did use the hydrotherapy circuit which was a steal at $15 per person and we were able to take advantage of the resort credit offered by our tour operator (thanks, Funjet!) to cover the cost. The spa is huge and we liked that the outside hot tubs had a view of the ocean. When you purchase the hydrotherapy circuit, your pass is valid for 24 hours which we did not know - some of our group went back about 20 hours after the first visit and they were able to use the circuit again, free of charge.
Cabo San Lucas Marina
We were too far outside of the town of Cabo San Lucas during our last stay for a quick visit but this time, we made a point to check it out. We caught the city bus (WAY nicer than any bus I’ve seen in the U.S.) for about $2 per person each way and it took about 25 minutes, picking us up from right outside the lobby. If you would rather take a cab, it is about a $30 ride each way.
The marina area of Cabo San Lucas is super clean and safe to walk around. We found a gift shop selling $1 Dos Equis and took advantage of the absence of open container laws by strolling the marina, sipping on cold beer. Yes, the marina area was just as touristic as you’d think it would be but it made for great people watching.
Aside from souvenir shopping, there were some high-end stores if you wanted to pick up luxury items with the exchange rate in your favor and no taxes - the Caribbean has always been a perfect place to buy luxury goods!
We didn’t really have time for it but there were lots of water taxis available to run you out to El Arco, the famous arch-like rock formation off the marina. There are glass bottom boats around too and you do have the option of spending some time on Lovers Beach at the base of the rocks.
Due to unforeseen circumstances that I’ll reference in the next section, I personally did not make it on our planned ATV excursion.
Now that I’ve admitted my guilt, I can say that the rest of the group really enjoyed the ATV experience. We usually aren’t very active on these trips but it was a 2-hour jaunt into the Los Cabos area desert to take a break from resort life. They took some great pictures, got a little dirty and made it back before lunch.
Food and Drink
Marquis Los Cabos Restaurants
The food at the Marquis Los Cabos was perfect– there were healthy options on the a la carte menus for lunch like grilled chicken and fish, and of course, quesadillas. The ceviche was delicious and I’m not even a seafood fan! The breakfast buffet was a little limited but we were able to order off the expansive à la carte menu as well.
Like at every resort I've been to (except for Grand Velas Riviera Maya), when you order a frozen drink, it does arrive a little watered down (it is hot, ice melts!) but the margaritas on the rocks and mixed drinks were STRONG. I stick to premium tequila and I was impressed. If your drinks isn't strong enough, they will pour you a double or hand you an extra shot on the side. One afternoon I really should have taken my own advice and paced myself…but it is Cabo, it happens! And sometimes, you just don’t make your early morning ATV excursion with your friends ☹
Off the resort, Kiran and I grabbed a bite to eat at The Office, one of the most famous restaurants in Cabo. It is a casual, beachfront bar that has been serving breakfast, lunch and dinner since the 1970s. After polishing off a bucket of Corona while overlooking El Arco, we snacked on guacamole and a huge Baja Burrito – so tasty!
Baja Brewing Company
After hanging out on the beach at The Office for a while, we made our way to Baja Brewing Company, just a few doors down. It looks a little strange from the outside (you have to walk through a condo hotel building and use their elevator) but when you arrive on the roof deck, you'll find a perfect view of El Arco and the marina.
It was Valentine's Day so most of the tables were reserved for dinner but we were able to take a seat at the bar and enjoy a couple of beers while taking in the sunset. Kiran really liked trying their craft beer after a week of nothing but Corona. We were there during happy hour and could not believe how cheap everything was! This place was truly a hidden gem and we will definitely be back.
During the day, the entertainment staff hosted activities in the center pool and left the infinity pool areas for relaxation which we loved. It was just the right level of fun for us!
At night, we participated in the Mexican theme night one night and wine tasting the other for cocktails before dinner. Aside from the theme nights which ended around 9 p.m., the resort was very quiet at night. Probably a little too quiet for some of our group’s liking (Kiran!). We didn’t experience much of the nightlife of Los Cabos, in either of the major towns, but we did spend the afternoon at the Marina where most of the nightclubs and bars appeared clean and safe.
DLT Pro Tips
1) Don't Get Swept Away
If you are a die-hard ocean swimming fan, you’ll be disappointed to learn that is not possible at to swim at the Marquis Los Cabos and most of the other resorts in the area. The current is strong and unsafe for swimming. We did put our feet in but you shouldn't go any further than that, even if you are a strong swimmer. We didn't see anyone in the water the whole time.
The ocean is beautiful to look at though and the resorts sure do make up for the lack of ocean swimming with expansive pools.
There are a few resorts located on swim-able beaches so be sure to ask your agent to recommend one if that is a must-have.
2) Airport Shenanigans
Even seasoned travelers and native Spanish speakers can fall prey to the occasional scam. I always walk my clients through the airport process in the Caribbean as aggressive timeshare and transportation representatives can confuse you by offering their "help", which ultimately leads to you re-purchasing something you've already paid for.
On our first trip to Cabo, the representatives were dressed in matching uniforms. As such, we mistook them for airport staff genuinely trying to assist us with our transportation and it took us at least 30 minutes to realize we were being sold something we had already paid for…and our real driver was waiting for us outside.
Unless otherwise instructed by your agent or transfer company, once you’ve cleared customs and immigration, keep walking until you exit the airport and are outside of the building. Most airports in the Caribbean don’t allow private transfer companies to wait inside the airport for their guests but they will meet you as soon as you exit.
3) Location, Location, Location
I find it hard to believe why anyone would want to leave the heavenly grounds of the Marquis Los Cabos but if you like to get out and explore during your trip or you'll want to leave each night for nightlife, be prepared to spend a lot of money on transportation. This resort is located between Cabo san Lucas and San Jose del Cabo in “The Corridor”. This is a stretch of land where many resorts are located but there is nothing much to do off-property. Cabo san Lucas is a pricey taxi ride away but San Jose del Cabo is a little less so. You can also opt for the bus, which was awesome and cheap!.
The magic of these resorts is really upped by their isolation and the quiet setting away from town enhances the relaxation factor. Be sure to let your agent know if close proximity to town is a must for you, there are lots of options with easy access.
4) All Rooms are Created Equal
One of the highlights of this resort is the fact that all of their rooms face the ocean. Usually, an ocean view room is an expensive upgrade but we had a great view from one of their "base level" rooms. You can upgrade to a higher floor for an even better view and they do have a couple of unique room categories with private pools and rooftop decks that are situated right on the beach, for those looking to go the extra mile.
Thanks for reading!
This post is intended to be a short recap of our stay with a focus on our itinerary and things to do in the area. For a more in-depth review of the Marquis Los Cabos, let's chat about your needs and whether this property would be a good fit for you and your group.
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