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About Chris Sands

Chris Sands is the author of Bohemia by the Bay, and writes about wine, golf, and travel for publications such as Baja.com, Los Cabos Guide, Los Cabos Magazine, 10 Best, and USA Today. He is a full-time resident of Cabo San Lucas.

One&Only Palmilla Partners with Laird Hamilton

Los Cabos Resort to Showcase Apparel of Big Wave Surfer Laird Hamilton

Luxury hospitality brand One&Only Resorts has announced an exclusive partnership deal with big wave surfer and all-around waterman Laird Hamilton – the former being the only resort company licensed to carry the latter’s new performance-based clothing line, Laird Apparel.  The launch recently took place at One&Only Palmilla in Los Cabos, with additional One&Only resorts expected to showcase specially curated collections by the end of the year.

The newly-debuted line of stylish yet performance-based apparel for men is inspired by the adventurous lifestyle of Hamilton himself. Hamilton, of course, is a legendary figure in the surf world, and generally regarded as the best big wave surfer ever. He pioneered the foilboard and tow-in surfing – using PWCs (personal water craft) to tow into waves too big to reach by paddle power – and has also been an active participant and proponent of wind and kitesurfing,  waterskiing, and even stand up paddleboarding. He’s also a successful model, filmmaker and television personality.

One&Only Palmilla Partners with Laird Hamilton

One&Only Palmilla Resorts is teaming up with Laird Apparel, the clothing line from big wave surfer Laird Hamilton.

One&Only was a natural partner for Laird Apparel, given its premium collection of tropical resort destinations. And its Palmilla property seemed singularly suited for the launch, blending barefoot luxury with a privileged, sui generis coastal setting. Not only does Los Cabos boast an established surf culture with a wealth of superb sites – the nearby Zippers break at Playa Costa Azul in San Jose del Cabo hosts the annual Los Cabos Open of Surf – but the area also boasts world-class conditions for water sports such as diving, windsurfing, kayaking and kiteboarding.

The 220-acre Grand-Dame resort has been the cynosure of high-end hospitality in Los Cabos for over 50 years. Originally founded in 1956, the property has evolved over the years from the fly-in fishing resort of original owner Rod Rodriguez to its current incarnation as a vacation haven for the haut-monde; a transition hastened by the One&Only imprimatur in 2004, and the efforts of former general manager and pioneer of Los Cabos style luxury hospitality Edward T. Steiner.

“When I arrived at the One&Only Palmilla in Los Cabos, the connection between Laird Apparel and the resort felt natural as it fit within the local Baja surf culture,” Hamilton said. “From the pristine beach to the world-class fitness center and golf course to the tranquil yoga garden, One&Only Palmilla is the idyll setting for the clothing’s hybrid, function-first edge. The technical fabrics and tailored construction of the apparel allow the wearer to transition easily from water activity to lounging to sport to evening.”

One&Only Palmilla Pairs Up with Laird Hamilton

One&Only Palmilla is one of the benchmark resorts in Baja California Sur, with a spectacular property near San Jose del Cabo.

Plans to expand Laird Apparel to other One&Only properties are currently in the works, with an announcement expected soon.  In the meantime, One&Only Palmilla is the only resort to carry the line, and indeed the only place to buy Laird Apparel in the nearly 800-mile long Baja California peninsula.  An exclusive high-quality performance t-shirt inspired by the casual luxury lifestyle of One&Only Resorts was designed for the launch, and is currently available in the onsite NEO boutique. So too are outdoor apparel options specifically curated for One&Only Palmilla’s exclusive clientele.

“We look for unique and meaningful brands to carry in NEO boutique at One&Only Resorts,” said Helen McCabe-Young, Executive Vice President Sales & Marketing, One&Only Resorts. “We were initially drawn to Laird Apparel for the collection’s inspired product, refined aesthetic, and technical functionality.  We wanted to offer something more for our male guests who lead active lives and seek comfort, and quality whether for sport or leisure.  Laird Hamilton’s contemporary lifestyle of adventure and relaxed luxury living lends itself perfectly to One&Only’s own distinctive style, ‘unstuffy’ sense of genuine hospitality and lively local culture.”

About One&Only Resorts  
Created exclusively for the ultra-luxury resort market, One&Only Resorts are conceived as hallmarks of excellence.  Set in some of the most beautiful locales in the world, each award-winning resort offers guests a distinctive style and personality borne of its local culture, a genuine hospitality and a lively energy that is unrivalled.   These properties include One&Only Reethi Rah in the Maldives; One&Only Le Saint Géran in Mauritius; One&Only Royal Mirage and One&Only The Palm in Dubai; One&Only Ocean Club in TheBahamas, One&Only Palmilla in Los Cabos, Mexico, One&Only Cape Town in South Africa and One&Only Hayman Island, Great Barrier Reef and Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley in The Blue Mountains in Australia.  One&Only has also announced plans to develop and operate five new One&Only resorts, in Sanya, Hainan, China; in Montenegro, which will be the first property for the collection in Europe, Bahrain and two new resorts in Mexico. More information on One&Only is available at oneandonlyresorts.com.

About Laird Apparel 
Laird Apparel LLC is a collection of functional, technically crafted, performance-based products comprised of three collections: Off Shore, Fitness and Lifestyle. The apparel line, created by big-wave surfer, renowned waterman and fitness expert Laird Hamilton, includes board and fitness shorts, hybrid surf and polo shirts, fitness and studio pants, premium and graphic tees and technical hoodie jackets at price points ranging from $30.00-$120.00. Laird Apparel is available online at www.lairdapparel.com, Ron Robinsonin Santa Monica and Melrose locations, and Tarsan SUP in Redondo Beach, CA. For more information please visit Laird Apparel on  Instagram,  Facebook   and Twitter.

 

 

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula. We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurantshotelsvacation rentals and activities, as well as guides, maps, complete event calendars and great stories about incredible travel destinations, from Tijuana to Cabo San Lucas.  We also provide free personal travel consulting, planning and booking services in Los Cabos, Todos Santos and La Paz, with prices that match or are below best advertised price. For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

 

 

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The Art of Fine Dining: Dinner at Don Sanchez in San Jose del Cabo

The Art of Fine Dining: Dinner at Don Sanchez in San Jose del Cabo

Chef and restaurateur Tadd Chapman has been a force on the San Jose del Cabo dining scene for close to two decades, from early successes like Tulip Tree, Brisas and Purple Pear to his current triumvirate of acclaimed restaurants: Don Sanchez, Habanero’s and Retro Burger Bar.

But as recent visitors to Chapman’s signature downtown restaurant Don Sanchez can attest: Chapman’s mastery of the dining experience – from detail-oriented service and charming ambiance to ambitious tasting menus and creative wine pairing options – is at an all-time high.

Don Sanchez in San Jose del Cabo

Don Sanchez Restaurante in downtown San Jose del Cabo.

At Don Sanchez, the recipe for success is as simple as one, two, three. One, choose the right ingredients. Two, search for the perfect harmony between food and wines. Three, make the dining experience a memorable event.

Don Sanchez in San Jose del Cabo

Lush foliage and colorful appointments distinguish Don Sanchez’s courtyard dining area.

Choosing the right ingredients involves more than simply sourcing fresh meat, seafood and produce, although certainly that too is important. So important that Chapman has established his own organic farm, Sanchez Organico, to provide him with the fresh produce needed for his unique Baja Fusion cuisine. So important that he buys his seafood fresh from local fisherman, and sources grass and grain-fed beef that are wet-aged and seasoned with natural un-iodized sea salt from Guerrero Negro in the northern part of the Baja California peninsula.

Don Sanchez in San Jose del Cabo

Beet Mole with tempura avocado, baby carrots confit, and tortilla foam.

But there are other important ingredients, too: friendly, first-class service; a setting that seems to become more magical in direct proportion to the amount of moonlight and music; and of course a wine list capacious enough to complement the ever-shifting daily and seasonal tasting menus.

Don Sanchez in San Jose del Cabo

Pork and Pulpo, with Hoisin pork belly, grilled octopus, smoked carrot pure, yuzu pickled cauliflower, dehydrated onion, and pasilla sauce.

The cocktail menu is also excellent, of course, as I found out during a recent visit. A short detour down an anything but dusty Dirt Road – Mezcal with tamarind puree, angostura bitters, brown sugar and basil – was an immediate reminder that Don Sanchez’s commitment to a “the devil is in the details” philosophy is at the heart of the restaurant’s ongoing success. The perfection of each small detail, from custom crafted cocktails to romantic saxophone ballads, finally resolves itself, by meal’s end, in a whole that is greater than any constituent part.

Don Sanchez in San Jose del Cabo

Chef Tadd Chapman (left) and the author indulge in a bit of wine tasting.

But chefs and their restaurants are judged first and foremost on food. And the daily tasting menus at Don Sanchez can, at this point, properly be considered works of fine art. Not only in terms of presentation – although the pork belly and pulpo (grilled octopus) combo I sampled looked to have been plated by a mutual descendant of Mondrian and Matisse – but in terms of taste, texture, and originality. The menus change to reflect the freshest available ingredients, and the dishes themselves often involve reworkings of traditional favorites in new and interesting ways.

Don Sanchez in San Jose del Cabo

Grilled Catch of the Day with sundried tomato tapenade, quinoa, salad, pesto, and bruschetta salsa.

A great example of this idea would be the meat course served during my last visit, a new take on the old breakfast standard of steak and eggs. Only for this occasion, the stars of the show were done up in evening dress, sealed and slow cooked at low heat – sous vide style – and served with a truffle hollandaise that seemed a nod to another morning standard, Eggs Benedict. Yet the dish in its entirety – it also included arugula, potato and bacon – was decidedly unexpected, utterly original, and, more to the point, completely delicious. And, I might add, perfectly complemented by a Spanish Tempranillo, a pairing I had never for a moment considered during hundreds of previous encounters with steak and eggs. I’ll say this: it beats the hell out of coffee or orange juice.

Don Sanchez in San Jose del Cabo

Sous Vide Steak and Eggs with parmesan breaded hen egg, truffle hollandaise, arugula, potato, and bacon.

Tasting menus at Don Sanchez follow the five-course model of amuse bouche, appetizer, salad, fish course, and meat course, with each dish working as a standalone, as well as a segue from the dish it precedes to the one that ensues. During my last dinner, the narrative progressed with the character and complexity of a fine novel:  a rich beet mole with tempura avocado, baby carrot confit, and tortilla foam followed by an aesthetic masterpiece of Hoisin pork belly and grilled octopus; an interlude of baby arugula, beet, and blue cheese, with toasted pecan, strawberries, baked pecan apple crisps, and balsamic fig vinaigrette; Grilled Baja Med catch of the day – tower style – with sundried tomato tapenade, quinoa, salad, pesto, bruschetta salsa; and of course the unexpected twist of an ending – savory sous vide steak and eggs; plus a sampler of decadent desserts for good measure. All matched to order with wines that traced the globe from Mexico’s Valle de Guadalupe and Valle de Parras to South America, Europe, and beyond.

Don Sanchez in San Jose del Cabo

A sampling of desserts.

Wine is a particular specialty at Don Sanchez, and the state-of-the-art wine bar and exposed cellar area and wine shop was a major focus when the restaurant was renovated several years ago. Not only does the onsite wine shop stock over 300 labels from benchmark producers around the world, but a sommelier is on hand to offer purchasing advice, and carry-out sales are permissible until 11 p.m.

Don Sanchez is located on Blvd. Mijares in downtown San Jose del Cabo, a block from City Hall and the plaza principal. For reservations, call (624) 142-2444. For more information, visit www.donsanchezrestaurant.com.

Don Sanchez in San Jose del Cabo

The exposed cellar area and carry-out wine shop stocks over 300 labels from around the world.

All photos courtesy of Perla Pulido.

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula. We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurantshotelsvacation rentals and activities, as well as guides, maps, complete event calendars and great stories about incredible travel destinations, from Tijuana to Cabo San Lucas.  We also provide free personal travel consulting, planning and booking services in Los Cabos, Todos Santos and La Paz, with prices that match or are below best advertised price. For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

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Happy Trails: Horseback Riding in Los Cabos with Cuadra San Francisco

Happy Trails: Horseback Riding in Los Cabos with Cuadra San Francisco

Horseback riding in Los Cabos

Whether it is a romantic canter along a secluded beach at sunset or traversing a hillside trail, horseback riding is one of Los Cabos’ least publicized pleasures. Why least publicized? Perhaps because there are no major events associated with the activity to attract destination travelers, like Bisbee’s annual marlin fishing tournaments, and no big name sportsmen, like the legendary golf figures who have designed top-ranked courses right here in Baja Sur.

But few places on earth can match Los Cabos when it comes to picturesque locales and diversity of terrains – the mountains descend into desert, and the desert dissolves into the sea – and few people can match the experience of master horseman Francisco Barrena, founder of Cuadra San Francisco and one-time student of the 20th century’s most celebrated horsemen, Portuguese Master Nuno Oliveira.

Horseback riding in Los Cabos

Cuadra San Francisco is the only professional equestrian center in Los Cabos.

Cuadra San Francisco is located in the Tourist Corridor that connects cape cities Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo, and the stables overseen by Francisco and his son Valente are home to nearly 50 horses that are available for beach and trail rides, dressage, riding lessons, polo lessons, and special events like marriage ceremonies and movie shoots.

Movie shoots come and go, of course, but weddings are big business in Los Cabos. Cuadra San Francisco’s traditional carriages are among the most charming transportation options you’ll find anywhere in Mexico, and the Barrena clan boasts eight of them, all perfectly maintained and driven by riders outfitted in traditional Mexican costume.

Horseback riding in Los Cabos

Cuadra San Francisco’s wedding carriages never go out of style.

Private trail rides – for individuals, couples, or groups — are perhaps the most popular draw at Cuadra San Francisco, and a great family activity. The horses are all perfectly trained, and the guides all speak excellent English. Best of all, each ride is customized, with a choice of terrains, and to a requested tour duration. Visitors may take one or two-hour rides through the desert, traversing hillsides, viewing the Great Thorn Forest, or ambling along gorgeous golden sand beaches that look out over the glittering blue waters of the Sea of Cortez.

Horseback riding in Los Cabos

Los Cabos boasts a diversity of trail riding terrains, from desert and mountains to golden sand beaches.

The Barrena’s School of Equitation, meanwhile, accepts riders of all skill levels, and excels in the fundamentals of classical dressage, a French term that encompasses the highest expression of horsemanship. Francisco and Valente Barrena are well-versed in Alta Escuela (‘High School’ in English), which includes the famed “airs above the ground,” age-old techniques like the majestic Spanish Walk (where the horse lifts each foreleg off the ground in exaggerated movements).

Horseback riding in Los Cabos

Want to learn the Spanish walk? Come to Los Cabos.

Western riding is also a specialty. Mexico has produced and continues to produce some of the world’s best horsemen, with a lineage that includes the feats and exploits of 19th century charros and chinacos. Whether Americans know it or not, both cowboys and rodeos originated south of the border, and the Barrena family are part of the living legacy of this proud tradition. Students at Cuadra San Francisco can learn the rudiments of the Mexican style, from the impressive reining stop to rejoneo, the art of fighting a bull from horseback.

Horseback Riding in Los Cabos

Cuadra San Francisco teaches the traditional art of Western riding.

As befits the family atmosphere, children are more than welcome at Cuadra San Francisco. The equestrian center maintains polo club size ponies and saddles for children ages 6 and up, and the staff is happy to teach youngsters the foundational skills needed for a lifetime of riding.

Speaking of ponies, polo lessons are also offered at Cuadra San Francisco. You’ll have to bring teams with you to play, but there are facilities and equipment available to learn or improve your knowledge of the sport of kings. Children and adults may also try their hand at a bit of Robin Hood style archery.

Horseback riding in Los Cabos

Polo anyone?

General Information

How to Book: For reservations, visit the website at www.loscaboshorses.com, call (624) 144-0160, or email cuadrasf@prodigy.net.mx. Cuadra San Francisco is open Monday – Saturday, with trail rides and lessons available from 9 a.m. to noon, and 4 p.m. to sundown.

Where to Go: Cuadra San Francisco is located at marker Km 19.5 on the Tourist Corridor that connects Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. They are located next to Cabo Real Golf Course, across from the Hotel Casa del Mar. A sign is visible on the west side of the highway above to a glorious stretch of bougainvillea.

What to Bring: Long pants, a hat, and a water bottle are highly recommended, as is protective sunscreen. The scenery on trail rides is often quite spectacular, so you may want to bring a camera as well.

Cost: Cuadra San Francisco takes pride in its competitive rates. Contact the office for specific details.

 

Traveling to Los Cabos? Talk to a travel agent at Baja.com.

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula. We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurantshotelsvacation rentals and activities, as well as guides, maps, complete event calendars and great stories about incredible travel destinations, from Tijuana to Cabo San Lucas.  We also provide free personal travel consulting, planning and booking services in Los Cabos, Todos Santos and La Paz, with prices that match or are below best advertised price. For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

 

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Have a Baja Moment! Find Your Place in Paradise at Casa Calle

Have a Baja Moment! Find Your Place in Paradise at Casa Calle

If you’re looking for a place in paradise to call your own that’s both private and secluded, yet near the heart of the action in San Jose del Cabo, then take a look at Casa Calle.

Perched atop Lido Hill overlooking the Sea of Cortez, Casa Calle is within walking distance of shopping, restaurants, wide sandy beaches, and world-class surfing and golf. Surfers, you’ll be less than a mile from Zippers, Old Man’s and The Rock. Golfers, how ‘bout a round of 18 right around the corner at the Jack Nicklaus designed Club Campestre Golf Course?

Casa Calle

Casa Calle is one of Los Cabos’ most romantic seaside hideaways.

Casa Calle contains four separate units that can be rented separately or together, so it’s perfect for couples or larger groups. Work on your tan by the pool (shared by all four units) or entertain friends at the poolside bar while you grill up the day’s catch on the barby. After dark, when lights twinkle in the trees and soft light emanates from the pool’s blue water, the patio is transformed into a romantic hideaway, a place to share a cocktail with that special someone before heading out to one of the many fine dining establishments nearby.

As its name implies, Casa del Vista is the top floor unit with private terrace from which you can watch the sun rise over the sea. It has a full kitchen, one bedroom, private bath and sleeps two or three comfortably.

Casa Calle

Sunrise from the terrace at Casa Calle.

Casa del Tranquilo, a studio apartment ideal for the single traveler or a couple, is a more economic option that includes use of the pool area and keeps you close to everything San Jose has to offer.

All four units are air-conditioned and have full kitchens. These rentals include free internet and phone calls to the U.S. and Canada, linens, shared washer/dryer, clothes iron, hair dryer, satellite TV that includes many of your favorite U.S. channels, and a DVD player.

So what are you waiting for? Come and see what Casa Calle and San Jose del Cabo have to offer.

 

Traveling to Los Cabos? Talk to a travel agent at Baja.com.

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula. We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurantshotelsvacation rentals and activities, as well as guides, maps, complete event calendars and great stories about incredible travel destinations, from Tijuana to Cabo San Lucas.  We also provide free personal travel consulting, planning and booking services in Los Cabos, Todos Santos and La Paz, with prices that match or are below best advertised price. For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

 

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Have a Baja Moment! Discover the Flavors of Cabo

Have a Baja Moment! Discover the Flavors of Cabo

Sabor a Cabo

The 8th Annual Sabor a Cabo is scheduled for December 1st, 5 – 11 p.m. at Club Campestre golf course in San Jose del Cabo.

Rejoice, foodies! The annual Los Cabos culinary extravaganza, Sabor a Cabo, returns for the 8th consecutive year. The food and beverage fest, whose name translates as Taste or Flavor of Cabo, is sponsored by the local restaurant association, CANIRAC Los Cabos, and traditionally draws up to 5,000 people to sample sweet and savory offerings from the area’s best chefs, as well as wines from Mexico’s premier growing regions.

According to Carmen Carbajal, current President of CANIRAC Los Cabos, “Sabor a Cabo offers guests, visitors and residents alike an opportunity to experience the very best in gastronomy and wine offered anywhere in all of Mexico.”

Dancing and live entertainment are also traditional staples at Sabor a Cabo, and this year’s version promises plenty of dance floor highlights courtesy of highly-regarded Las Vegas based DJ Roman Rosati, known to local cocktail cognoscenti from his appearances at Nikki Beach. Imported entertainment is one of several new additions for the popular gastronomic gala, which will also feature three international guest chefs, as well as a major marketing campaign (in conjunction with the Los Cabos Tourism Board) aimed at drawing more guests from the United States. The 8th annual Sabor a Cabo is scheduled for December 1st, from 5 – 11 p.m., at Club Campestre golf course in San Jose del Cabo.

Sabor a Cabo

Sabor a Cabo is a showcase for the finest chefs in Los Cabos.

Sabor a Cabo is, first and foremost, a showcase for the finest chefs in Los Cabos, and the area’s best kitchen magicians will be on hand to display their culinary creations from tents set up along the manicured fairways of Grupo Questro’s Club Campestre golf course in San Jose del Cabo. As always, wines will flow freely from Mexico’s four best grape growing areas – Valle de Parras, Valle de Santo Tomas, Valle de Ojos Negros, and of course Valle de Guadalupe in Baja Norte – but this will be the first year guests at VIP tables are also be able to sample palate pleasers from three international guest chefs, at least two of whom have earned a coveted Michelin star for their gastronomic efforts.

Sabor a Cabo

Are you ready to sample the flavors of Cabo?

From its inception, Sabor a Cabo has been one of the top social events in Los Cabos, proving popular with the local smart set, as well as regular and seasonal visitors from the United States and Canada. Despite this wellspring of North American support, organizers continue to try to grow the festival, and to establish it as a major international destination event. To this end, CANIRAC and the Los Cabos Tourism Board, in concert with the Miami Herald’s HCP Publishing, are marketing Sabor a Cabo in newspapers across the U.S., with the primary advertising focus in cities that offer direct flights to Los Cabos.

“The international advertising campaign for Sabor a Cabo is the first of its kind for any destination in Mexico, at least for an event focused on Gastronomy and Wine,” said Eduardo Segura, Managing Director of the Los Cabos Tourism Board.

Sabor a Cabo

Guests will dance the night away to beats from Las Vegas based DJ Roman Rosati.

Tickets for the event are $100 per person U.S. ($1250 pesos), and are available through the Sabor a Cabo website, as well as at several prominent local locations, including Sheraton Hacienda del Mar in the Tourist Corridor, and Nick-San at the Shoppes at Palmilla. For pricing on VIP tables, call CANIRAC Los Cabos at (624)143-3944.

 

Planning to attend the 8th Annual Sabor a Cabo? Talk to a travel agent at Baja.com.

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula. We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurantshotelsvacation rentals and activities, as well as guides, maps, complete event calendars and great stories about incredible travel destinations, from Tijuana to Cabo San Lucas.  We also provide free personal travel consulting, planning and booking services in Los Cabos, Todos Santos and La Paz, with prices that match or are below best advertised price. For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

 

 

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Secluded San Jose Hideaway Posada Chabela Offers Sun, Sea, Surf and Sand

Secluded San Jose Hideaway Posada Chabela Offers Sun, Sea, Surf and Sand

It’s hard to imagine a better setting than the one enjoyed by Posada Chabela, a charming bed and breakfast that’s nestled amidst bright tropical foliage, and overlooks Los Cabos’ best restaurant and San Jose del Cabo’s best surfing beach, as well as the glittering blue waters of the Sea of Cortez.

San Jose Hideaway Offers Sun, Sea, Surf and Sand

Posada Chabela is a secluded seaside hideaway overlooking Playa Costa Azul in San Jose del Cabo.

The close proximity of Deckman’s at Havana, perhaps the best restaurant in Baja California Sur, and Playa Costa Azul, the beach that drew the world’s best surfers to San Jose earlier this summer for the six-star Los Cabos Open of Surf tournament, should be more than enough to recommend this secluded cliffside hideaway, but the boutique lodging also offers tasteful accommodations,  personal service, and warm tropical atmosphere at very affordable rates.

San Jose Hideaway Offers Sun, Sea, Surf and Sand

The intimate B&B showcases vibrant colors and a warm tropical atmosphere.

Posada Chabela seemingly provides the perfect showcase for the exquisite taste and design talents of innkeeper Rose Ann Dolores Russo Solazzo, who was born in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, and has been involved in the hotel business from a very young age. Each of the B&B’s four casitas are individually decorated, and feature boutique accents ranging from Mexican red brick ceilings to rustic French doors. The chic casitas also boast private patios with hammocks, and these gently swaying recliners are the perfect place to relax and enjoy the intoxicating combination of coastal breezes and splendid ocean views.

San Jose Hideaway Offers Sun, Sea, Surf and Sand

The poolside area at Posada Chabela is perfect for sunning, swimming, and al fresco dining.

In addition to the comfortable accommodations, amenities abound at Posada Chabela, from continental breakfasts every morning to afternoon gatherings with tea, sherry, and the innkeeper’s “presentation du jour.” All guests have access to the communal kitchen, and the private poolside area is perfect for sunning, reading, and salt water filtered swimming. The B&B is also conveniently close to the beach, and is a short drive away from downtown San Jose del Cabo, an area that boasts first-class shopping and dining, as well as the city’s historic Art District.

San Jose Hideaway Offers Sun, Sea, Surf and Sand

Lush, colorful foliage provides a perfect complement to Posada Chabela’s tasteful accommodations and appointments.

Given its privileged location and upscale accommodations, Posada Chabela offers surprisingly affordable rates – two of the casitas are available for under $80 U.S. per night – and weekly rates are available. As a bonus, mention Baja.com when booking six nights and you’ll enjoy the seventh night free. Pets are welcome with advance notice.

 

Planning a visit to Los Cabos? Talk to a travel agent at Baja.com!

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula. We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurantshotelsvacation rentals and activities, as well as guides, maps, complete event calendars and great stories about incredible travel destinations, from Tijuana to Cabo San Lucas.  We also provide free personal travel consulting, planning and booking services in Los Cabos, Todos Santos and La Paz, with prices that match or are below best advertised price. For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

 

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Voila! Fine Food Amidst San Jose del Cabo’s Fine Arts District

Voila! Fine Food Amidst San Jose del Cabo’s Fine Arts District

Chef Roberto Valle’s Voila Bistro serves some of the most remarkable food in San Jose del Cabo, and does it from a casually elegant setting in the heart of the city’s historic Art District. Housed amidst the remnants of an 1860s hacienda, Voila showcases a seamless blend of indoor and outdoor dining spaces, including the intimate, air-conditioned “Cyclone Room,” and an expansive patio highlighted by tropical palm trees, live jazz, and a chic bar area sheltered by a lovely palo de arco pergola. The Plaza Paulina digs provide the perfect atmosphere in which to sample Valle’s self-styled Haute Mexican cuisine, which invigorates traditional favorites with French and Asian accents.

Voila! Fine Food Amidst San Jose del Cabo's Fine Arts District

The bar at Voila is set beneath a distinctive palo de arco pergola.

A restaurateur for over 25 years, Chef Roberto trained at the prestigious Cordon Bleu in Paris, and established his reputation locally as Executive Chef at the Q Restaurant and Bar in the exclusive community of Querencia. Voila brings all of Valle’s expertise and experience into play, as the chef and his bicultural staff create culinary magic using only the freshest local ingredients. Lunch and dinner are served seven days a week at Voila, and the restaurant maintains some of the most generous “happy hour” hours in Los Cabos, not to mention an excellent selection of hand-crafted martinis and other specialty cocktails.

Voila is justifiably famous for its lobster burritos, but all of the midday meal options are superb, including familiar French favorites like Croque Monsieur and Quiche Lorraine. Start with a traditional Caesar or Santa Fe Salad – a Southwestern specialty made with blackened chicken breast, corn, black beans, queso fresco, and chipotle mayonnaise –  or dive straight into classic Mexican dishes showcasing the signature Voila twist, including Rolled Crab Taquitos, Quesadillas with Poblano Peppers, and the delicious Seafood Enchiladas with Guajillo Salsa. The Voila Burger is perhaps the best in all of Los Cabos, and features Angus beef artfully topped with Roquefort dressing and Serrano ham.

Voila! Fine Food Amidst San Jose del Cabo's Fine Arts District

Chef Roberto Valle’s menus at Voila feature Haute Mexican cuisine with French and Asian accents.

Despite its lunch hour charms, the ultimate Voila experience consists of dinner and dessert, preferably as the sun is setting and soft light suffuses San Jose del Cabo’s colonial-style Distrito del Arte. This glorious sensory experience is enhanced by tastes of Vol au Vent of Roasted Duck in Five Pepper and Rose Petal Sauce and Grandma’s Vegetable Soup, but reaches its pinnacle with exquisite entrees such as the Braised Cornish Hen in a pomegranate demi-glace, and the Pistachio and Macadamia Crusted Sea bass. For dessert, sample deliciously decadent options like the Chocolate Tart with pecans, walnut crustillant, and creme anglaise, or the Cranberry Cheesecake Tart with blueberry coulis.

Voila offers “happy hour” specials from 12 – 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday, with two for one deals on beers and cocktails. Bartenders are happy to shake up happy hour creations from the restaurant’s new cocktail menu, which includes the signature Voila Martini, made with vodka, peach liqueur, Cointreau, and cranberry juice. It’s a cross between a Cosmopolitan and Sex on the Beach, and a perfect way to liven up the afternoon hours between art gallery visits

Voila! Fine Food Amidst San Jose del Cabo's Fine Arts District

Voila offers intimate dining for up to 35 guests in its air-conditioned Cyclone Room.

In addition to superb onsite dining at Voila Bistro, Chef Roberto and his staff are also the area’s premier providers of catering services. In fact, the full name of the operation is Voila Bistro and Catering. From wedding rehearsals and receptions to private dinners and cooking classes, Voila is one of the best event planning resources in Los Cabos. The restaurant’s dining spaces can accommodate several hundred guests, and Voila also offers villa and gourmet home delivery services. After all, who wants to cook on vacation? Choose from five individually crafted menus showcasing the finest local ingredients, and while you’re at it, order a few waiters as well. The service staff is consistently excellent, just like everything else that bears the Voila imprimatur.

Planning a visit to Los Cabos? Talk to a travel agent at Baja.com!

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula. We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurantshotelsvacation rentals and activities, as well as guides, maps, complete event calendars and great stories about incredible travel destinations, from Tijuana to Cabo San Lucas.  We also provide free personal travel consulting, planning and booking services in Los Cabos, Todos Santos and La Paz, with prices that match or are below best advertised price. For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

 

 

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Have a Baja Moment! Secrets Marquis Los Cabos Offers Romance, Unlimited Luxury

Have a Baja Moment! Secrets Marquis Los Cabos Offers Romance, Unlimited Luxury

Secrets Marquis Los Cabos

Seeking the ultimate romantic vacation getaway?

The secret is out. For those seeking the ultimate romantic vacation getaway, with secluded beaches, sumptuous spas, and tons of pampering amenities, it’s hard to top Secrets Marquis Los Cabos, a luxurious all-inclusive resort situated in the Tourist Corridor, the gorgeous 20 mile stretch of coastline that connects cape cities Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo.

Secrets Marquis Los Cabos

Set between desert and sea, and nestled between two championship level golf courses, Secrets Marquis Los Cabos offers unlimited luxury.

Nestled between two championship level golf courses, the area’s benchmark adults only resort features deluxe accommodations overlooking golden sands and the Sea of Cortez, as well as the ultimate Cabo combination: privacy with convenient access to the shopping and nightlife of the neighboring cities.

Secrets Marquis Los Cabos

Secrets Marquis boasts 235 elegant suites with king-sized beds and furnished balconies.

Secrets Marquis Los Cabos promises “unlimited luxury,” and delivers by offering a flawlessly maintained property with a privileged seaside location, and a friendly staff trained to exceed every expectation. The resort boasts 235 elegant suites with king-sized beds and furnished balconies, perfect for chilled champagne cocktails and spectacular views of the Sea of Cortez. Pampering amenities include three pools – two of which are infinity pools – a pristine private beach, an onsite spa, first-class food and drink, a fitness center and golf desk, daily activities and entertainment, and 24 hour room and concierge service.

Secrets Marquis Los Cabos

Gorgeous poolside views are par for the course at Secrets Marquis Los Cabos.

Dining and drinks are included in the all-inclusive packages, and guests at Secrets Marquis Los Cabos enjoy a wide variety of international specialties, from fresh local seafood and traditional Mexican favorites to more exotic fare such as Pan-Asian cuisine. Coffee, pastries, and grilled favorites are among other tasty treats offered at the resort’s half-dozen onsite restaurants, and unlimited premium drinks are also part of the packages, from ice cold beers and fine wines to tropical umbrella garnished cocktails.

Secrets Marquis Los Cabos

At Secrets Marquis, romance is the specialty of the house.

Although many guests spend the majority of their stay enjoying luxurious suites, infinity pools, and tropical seaside breezes, Secrets also offers a full slate of activities and entertainment, from golf and spa services to snorkeling and diving adventures, tequila and wine tastings to elegant cocktail and fun-filled theme parties, not to mention movie nights under the stars and live performances. Football and volleyball games are often organized on the beach, and onsite classes offer everything from cooking and Spanish lessons to aerobics and yoga.

Secrets Marquis Los Cabos

The resort is a popular spot for destination weddings, honeymoons, anniversaries, and renewal of vows ceremonies.

Secrets’ specialty of the house is romance, and the resort offers customized wedding, honeymoon, renewal of vows, and anniversary packages. In addition to assistance from the onsite wedding coordinator, these romantic packages include pampering touches like breakfasts in bed, special couples massages and other spa treatments, bottles of sparkling wine, dinners for two, and floral arrangements. Given the spectacular setting, the resort is a popular location for destination weddings, and can accommodate high guest counts, as well as more intimate gatherings. Special events spaces and services are also available for visiting executives and other business travelers.

Secrets Marquis Los Cabos

Special events are a little more special with sunset views of the Sea of Cortez.

During the past year, Secrets Marquis has been honored with some of the world’s most prestigious travel awards and ratings, and was included on Travel and Leisure’s list of the world’s best hotels, and U.S News & World Reports’s list of the best Mexican hotels. The luxury resort has also received the AAA Four Diamond Award for 2013, a Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence, and has been recognized as an RCI Gold Crown Resort. Additionally, Secrets Marquis is a proud member of the Leading Hotels of the World, and the property has been Rainforest Alliance Verified, signalling an ongoing commitment to reducing environmental impact.

 

Planning a visit to Los Cabos? Talk to a travel agent at Baja.com!

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula. We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurants, hotels, vacation rentals and activities, as well as guides, maps, complete event calendars and great stories about incredible travel destinations, from Tijuana to Cabo San Lucas.  We also provide free personal travel consulting, planning and booking services in Los Cabos, Todos Santos and La Paz, with prices that match or are below best advertised price. For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

 

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Have a Baja Moment! Transportation Keys for Your Los Cabos Adventure

Have a Baja Moment! Transportation Keys for Your Los Cabos Adventure

What are the keys to a great vacation experience in Los Cabos? For starters, don’t limit yourself to the cape cities of Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. Both are beautiful of course, and offer abundant access to pristine beaches, world-class fishing and golf, and fine dining that focuses on the region’s seemingly endless supply of fresh and delicious seafood. But Baja Sur has so much more to offer, from incredible fishing and diving on the East Cape, to the seaside splendor of the artists’ colony of Todos Santos, and the cultural riches of the state’s capital city, La Paz.

Of course, to truly get a taste of all Baja Sur has to offer, you’ll have to consider your transportation options. If you want someone else to do the driving, Transcabo is an easy, affordable, and convenient solution. However, if you prefer to explore the area on your own, National Car Rental is the clear choice.

Transportation Keys

Transportation keys for Los Cabos? Pick them up at National Rental Car.

National has over 37 years of experience in Mexico, including 25 in Los Cabos, and has long since established itself as the go-to provider for safe and reliable rental cars. They’re easy to find, as well, with locations all over Los Cabos and Baja Sur. In fact, you can grab the keys to your vacation adventure as soon as you clear customs. Plus, the company offers a wide variety of rental choices, from fuel-friendly economy models to spacious sedans, vans, and sport utility vehicles that can carry you from the shores of the Sea of Cortez to the mountains of the Sierra de la Laguna.

Not only can you go like a pro with National, you can experience Los Cabos and beyond like a local. Forget the typical tourist pursuits like sightseeing and souvenir hunting. With National, you have easy access to the entire region. Whether your tastes run to camping and hiking, fishing and diving, or wining and dining, nothing unlocks the hidden treasures of Baja Sur quite like National’s rental cars.

Transportation Keys

Transcabo makes vacationing easy, from the moment you land at the airport.

As with National Car Rental, service from Transcabo is available as soon as you land at the airport. The area’s premier destination travel provider offers an array of convenient options for individuals and groups, from private ground transportation and shuttle service to concierge assistance and guided tours. Choose from a superb selection of immaculately maintained vehicles, including late model Escalades, Suburbans, vans and full size coaches. All drivers are commercially licensed, professionally trained, and completely bilingual. VIP chauffer service is also available, and is an excellent option for celebrities and visiting executives.

Transcabo is synonymous with stress-free travel. Move easily from airport to your hotel, condo, or vacation rental, or arrange a guided city tour of Cabo San Lucas, San Jose del Cabo, Todos Santos, or La Paz. Transcabo is also a great transportation option for outdoor activities. Want to play one of the area’s world class golf courses? Transcabo will carry you and your clubs to your favorite seaside links. Feel like fishing, diving, parasailing, or a romantic horseback ride along a secluded beach? Trancabo has you covered.

Traveling for business or destination event services? The company also features corporate and event assistance, from transportation and hospitality to meet and greet services and theme parties, fine dining, team building, and spouses programs.

Transportation Keys

Transcabo is ready to take you wherever you want to go.

Book your transportation through Baja.com, and get extra service for no extra charge at Transcabo. Additionally, free class upgrades from National Car Rental are available for economy through full-sized vehicles. Those renting premium class cars may get a second driver or car seat free!

Once you’ve reserved your ground transportation, check out our new Have a Baja Moment! promotion, featuring great Summer deals for three of the area’s premier hotels: Hotel El Ganzo in San Jose del Cabo, Bahia Hotel & Beach Club in Cabo San Lucas, and the chic oceanfront resort Rancho Pescadero on the outskirts of Todos Santos. Don’t wait too long! Offers expire soon.

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula. We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurants, hotels, vacation rentals and activities, as well as guides, maps, complete event calendars and great stories about incredible travel destinations, from Tijuana to Cabo San Lucas.  We also provide free personal travel consulting, planning and booking services in Los Cabos, Todos Santos and La Paz, with prices that match or are below best advertised price. For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

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Have A Baja Moment! Flora Farms Summer Camp Opens in July

Have A Baja Moment! Flora Farms Summer Camp Opens in July

Summer camp is coming to Flora Farms.

Although best known for its organic produce and incredible farm-to-table dining experiences courtesy of Flora’s Field Kitchen, the gorgeous 10-acre property is adding summer fun to its roster of homey, healthy and environmentally conscious activities, with a quartet of 6 day sessions for children 6-12.

Located in the foothills of the Sierra de la Laguna mountain range, just outside of San Jose de Cabo, everyone’s favorite farm and community of culinary cottages is seeking to provide a safe and beautiful outdoor atmosphere in which kids can not only have room to run and play, but also nourish their minds by learning arts and crafts, cooking, gardening and yoga, and practicing self-reflection through daily journal writing.

It’s the first year the summer camp has been held at Flora Farms, and since all sessions will be bilingual, it’s a perfect fit for children of both locals and visitors.

Flora Farms Summer Camp

Flora Farms Summer Camp sessions begin on July 2nd and continue through August 11th.

There are four sessions scheduled this summer, beginning on July 2nd, 2013.

Session 1:   July 2-7, Ages 6-8

Session 2:   July 16-21, Ages 7-10

Session 3:   July 30 – August 4, Ages 8-12

Session 4:   August 6-11, Ages 10-12

This is the only camp of its kind in the area, and one of the reasons is that Flora Farms is something of a world unto itself, not only in terms of geography, but in its commitment to sustainability and environmental values. Situated outside the tourist centers of Los Cabos, the picturesque property features plenty of open space and a bucolic setting, albeit with access to modern facilities and services, as well as warm, welcoming and highly trained staff. There are a proportionately high number of instructors and guides for each camp session, ensuring kids get plenty of personal attention.

Flora Farms Summer Camp

Flora Farms Summer Camp sessions will include cooking, gardening, arts and crafts, nature walks and yoga.

All sessions run from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, and daily activities are scheduled to provide stimulation for mind, body and soul. Kids get to get dirty gardening and planting basil, wash off with runs through the sprinkler, plus play games and learn arts and crafts. What else? How about visits to the nearby ranch to allow children to interact with animals like goats, chicken and rabbits? Light lunches and snacks are always included, and there are also cooking classes on tap to teach valuable skills like pizza making and bread baking.

Each camp session concludes with an overnight sleepover that starts at 4 p.m. on Saturday. The final evening consists of a safe bonfire over which to cook hotdogs and toast s’mores, as well as an activities workshop, a shadow making show, and of course storytelling. Parents can pick up their kids at 10 a.m. Sunday, but will have to wait a year to drop them off again.

Flora Farms Summer Camp

Flora Farms is committed to sustainable organic agriculture and environmental values.

Tuition is $3500 pesos per child, plus $500 for the cost of materials ($333 U.S. total). For reservations or further information, visit www.flora-farms.com, email Lakshmi@flora-farms.com, or call (624) 132-4135.

Ready for a trip to Los Cabos?  Check out our new School’s Out promotion, featuring great deals for two of the area’s premier hotels, Hotel El Ganzo in San Jose del Cabo, and Bahia Hotel & Beach Club in Cabo San Lucas. Better book now, the promotion ends on July 31st.

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula, supported by a full-service tour operator staffed by Baja locals (our “Baja Travel Savants”). We offer Baja travelers expert advice about local restaurants, hotels and vacation rentals, as well as guides, maps and articles about events, sports and activities. We provide bilingual customer support, information and sales seven days a week, 365 days a year.  For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

Photos courtesy of Flora Farms.

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