Clients can savor French dishes at Piaf. // © 2017 Grand Velas Los Cabos
Feature image (above): The resort’s curved walls are meant to resemble sails. // © 2017 Grand Velas Los Cabos
Aqui empieza la magia — which translates from Spanish to “the magic begins here” — is engraved on a sculpture by local artist Sergio Bustamante that greets each person who enters the lobby of the newly opened Grand Velas Los Cabos.
Located about 35 minutes from Los Cabos International Airport, Grand Velas Los Cabos is a stunning beachfront oasis that exists in perfect harmony with the rugged mountains and desert that surround it. From the moment I set foot in the $150 million resort — which opened in December and is the fifth property from the family-owned Velas Resorts — my experience really did feel magical.
The mastermind behind the curved, half-moon design of the hotel is architect Ricardo Elias, who was also at the helm for Grand Velas Riviera Maya and Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit. The open-air, three-story entryway — which sits more than 300 feet above sea level — is truly breathtaking. Views of the ocean are framed by walls that serve a dual purpose: to lend an impressive scale to the space and to block wind currents while providing shade. These signature “Velas walls” add a unique touch and interesting look to the hotel’s facade, acting as dividers between balconies for all 304 oceanview suites.
“Due to the curvature of the building, the trapezoidal-shaped walls simulate white sails,” said Juan Vela Ruiz, vice president of Velas Resorts. “The purpose of the architectural element is to connect the building with its main neighbor: the sea.”
The property’s modern suites range from 1,180 to 3,412 square feet and feature separate living areas; private oceanview terraces; and goose-down pillows and comforters that lend to a good night’s sleep. The generous minibar includes premium tequila and red wine, and rooms come equipped with a Nespresso coffeemaker. The other highlight of each suite is the spacious bathroom that has been outfitted with a sliding wall — after all, there’s nothing like starting or ending your day soaking in a Jacuzzi tub while looking out at the Pacific Ocean.
Health-conscious travelers can enjoy duplex wellness suites, which feature special additions such as a juice bar, exercise bikes and aromatherapy kits.
The property provides plenty of extra amenities, too, including three outdoor pools; a convention center for business travelers; state-of-the-art club rooms for kids and teens; and more. After an oceanfront yoga class in the fitness center, I headed to the spa to try the hotel’s Blue Agave Candle Massage.
Guests who sign up for any 50-minute treatment are offered a seven-step water journey experience, which includes access to a polar pool, an aroma-therapy sensory shower and a multisensory pool.
As with all features on the property, nothing is overlooked, especially when it comes to on-site dining. In addition to four bars, a cafe and room service, there are multiple fine-dining restaurants. Azul features a decadent breakfast buffet and a fresh juice selection, while Frida specializes in Mexican dishes. Piaf offers French fare, Velas 10 prepares seafood and steak, and Lucca focuses on Italian food.
“Grand Velas Los Cabos’ variety of gourmet restaurants and foodie experiences allow guests to explore and savor a worldly fusion of flavors without leaving the comfort of the resort,” Vela Ruiz said. “All restaurants are designed to take full advantage of the stunning views and have indoor and open-air seating.”
My favorite eatery was Cocina de Autor, helmed by two Michelin-starred chef Sidney Schutte. Highlights from my eight-course dinner menu were the red snapper topped with oyster, Iberian ham and lychee foam, and the goat cheese ice cream with grilled pineapple, lime and hibiscus for dessert.
If clients are eager to explore off-property, San Jose del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas are only 30 minutes away. I considered venturing out, but when you have everything you need at an all-inclusive like Grand Velas Los Cabos, it’s next to impossible to leave — so I didn’t. And I’m perfectly OK with that.