Ok, so big news… obviously if you’ve been following us you know we GOT ENGAGED! We flew to Cabo for our annual anniversary trip – for more details on why we go to Cabo every year, read the post to learn about how he we met (hint, it involves a date to Cabo). We had the best trip, not just because we got engaged, but because the resort we stayed at was a dream. We’ve officially added it to the top of our list as “favorite hotel”. And that’s saying a lot… we’ve stayed at hundreds and hundreds of hotels.
When we were planning the trip, I had no idea that Tony was planning on proposing to me. In my mind, it was business as usual because Cabo is one of our favorite places to visit. It’s a quick, direct plane ride from San Diego. And has all of our favorite things packed into one location: relaxation, beaches, pools, margaritas, nachos, tacos, massages & amazing people.
Everything You Need to Know About Grand Velas in Los Cabos
We decided to stay at Grand Velas and I literally can’t imagine a more perfect place to get engaged or spend 4 days relaxing and soaking in the excitement.
Grand Velas Cabos Resort is located on the “Cabo Corridor”, meaning it’s between San Jose del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas. We flew direct from San Diego to Los Cabos International Airport. We opt to fly Alaska as often as possible & love that there’s a direct flight that get’s us into Cabo before lunch time! From the airport, it’s about a 30 minute drive to the hotel. In terms of location, it’s the perfect distance from the airport, overlooks a private beach and is close to a ton of other activities, golf courses & spots to snorkel or scuba.
I love how private the location is as well. You definitely feel more secluded, which I prefer when I’m trying to relax. But it’s still a quick drive to Cabo San Lucas or San José del Cabo if you want to experience the local shops, restaurants or nightlife.
I’ll be honest though, there’s no need to ever leave. We never rent cars when we visit Cabo, but opt to have a driver pick us up and take us to the airport. Grand Velas were kind enough to set our transportation up for us and we had a driver waiting for us at the airport. Not to mention, the resort is all inclusive – meaning all of the food & drinks are included in the booking!
When we pulled into the resort, my first thought was “wow, this place is insane”. The first thing you see when you pull into the entry way is a large, open lobby overlooking the ocean. We were instantly greeted with champagne. The attendant then offered us a choice of different fruit flavored caviar. Something I’d never tried before, but when you put them in the bottom of the champagne class, it gives it a bit of fruit flavor and kind of reminds me of a boozy boba!
We then opted to take a tour of the property. Side note- they offered to take us to the ocean front restaurant for lunch, but Tony was so nervous about the engagement ring in his pocket he quickly agreed to take the tour. That way he could scope out possible proposal locations! I really enjoyed the tour because we got to see all of the different suites, restaurants, fitness center & spa.
Grand Velas isn’t your typical all-inclusive hotel. It has seven restaurants, all high-end, including Cocina de Autor, led by a two-Michelin starred chef! More about the food later…
It’s an all-suite waterfront property, meaning every room has a view of the ocean. There are no “garden-view” rooms at this luxurious spot. Their motto is “Beyond all luxury, beyond all compare” for a reason. The property was designed so that each and every suite boasts beautiful Sea of Cortés views, no matter what side of the hotel or floor you’re on.
Every suite has a personal concierge as well. Our concierge was extremely helpful and even sent us some special celebratory desserts and a bottle of tequila after we got engaged. Whether you need dinner reservations or help arranging a ride into town, the concierge are more than happy to help, 24 hours a day.
Oh. My. God. That’s literally what I said when we walked into our room. Every suite is over 1,110 square feet – meaning they’re bigger than most of the apartments I lived in during my 20s.
Our Grand Class Suite had an open sleeping and living area, making it feel really bright & open. The first thing I noticed was the private plunge pool on our balcony. I’m talking a massive, perfectly heated pool that looks out over the ocean, that you can use any time, day or night. Next to the plunge pool was a giant lounge couch and small table and chairs – my new favorite spot to drink coffee in the morning.
Speaking of coffee, the room had a Nespresso machine in it. You know I’m obsessed with my Nespresso machine at home, so having one in my hotel room not only made me feel right at home, but is always so convenient when you need a little pick me up in the morning or after a long day at the pool.
In addition the the Nespresso machine, the pantry and bar were completely stocked. There were welcome bottles of artisanal mezcal, red and white wine. As well as beer, soda, water, juice & coffee creamers in the refrigerator that were restocked daily. They also had a drawer filled with chips, crackers and candy – a major plus! A lot of times at all inclusive resorts, you feel like you’re getting pretty minimal food & drinks in your room. Which is not the case at Grand Velas. All of the drinks are top shelf & they keep you stocked with plenty of water bottles and snacks.
The bed, which was set up in the middle of the room looked out over the plunge pool & we could see the ocean every morning when we woke up. I loved the floor to ceiling glass doors because there’s literally no bad view from any spot in the room.
The bathroom had a HUGE two person jacuzzi tup, massive shower, vanity, double sink and walk in closet. I love that in the closet, they provide a beach bag for you to use during your stay. Definitely a nice touch in case you forgot a bag to throw your sunscreen and magazines into.
They even offer a pillow menu. That’s right, in case you’re not completely satisfied with the pillows on the bed already, you have your choice of five different pillows that can be delivered to your room. They even have a selection of pillows you can use when you’re relaxing by the pool.
When we went on a tour of the property, they also showed us one of the family suites. I thought it was really cool that they had room that were set up just for families traveling with kids. Kids are greeted with an in-suite tepee with a coloring book and stuffed animal. They also have everything you would need while vacationing with babies, from a baby bathtubs to strollers, cribs and bottle sterilizers. They also have nanny services. So if you have kids and want a little break by the pool, somehow can either watch your baby or take the kids to do fun activities like cooking classes and foam parties!
The Pool & Beach
When we first got to the resort, I wanted to head straight for the pool. But Tony strategically guided me to beach, where he proposed to me the first day of our trip!
While you can’t swim at the beach, you can lay out in one of their covered daybeds and sip on a cocktail. The beach isn’t suitable for swimming or wading because of strong undertows and unpredictable tides. If you’re looking to take a dip in the ocean, you can go to Chileno Beach, located a mile away.
Since I’m not much of an ocean swimmer, I was perfectly content laying by the pool. The resort actually has three infinity pools that overlook the ocean. Two for all ages and one for adults only.
The kids pool looked like a ton of fun. They had games, inflatable balls that kids could run on top of the water in, giant inflatable obstacle courses & fun mocktails!
We opted for the ocean front adults only infinity pool. The lounges are staggered and tiered so no matter, you have panoramic views of the ocean. The service was amazing. From the chaise lounges they set up, to the attendants that come around to serve food, drinks, chilled cucumber slices for your eyes, popsicles, cold fruit and chair side sunglasses cleaning. I was a huge fan of the “boozy popsicles” they were passing around. Basically, you get your choice of fruit flavored popsicle that you dip into a tequila shot! They even have complimentary sunscreen in case you forgot yours in the room (which we did almost every day haha)!
We loved lounging all day, swimming and taking in the views and falling asleep in the shade by the pool. The poolside food was also amazing. I was a huge fan of their nachos and tacos! As well as all of the cocktails they whipped up for us!
Now, on to my favorite part of the trip: THE FOOD! And it completely exceeded all of my expectations. Again, I feel like people normally set the bar a little lower when it comes to all inclusive resorts. But Grand Velas food was on par with some of the best restaurants I’ve visited all over the world.
The resort has seven distinct restaurants, which they call a “global gastronomic tour”. Each are uniquely (and elegantly) designed and themed gourmet restaurants that offer fresh and local options. You can choose between French, Italian or Mexican food at Piaf, Lucca or Frida. Cocina de Autor is Sidney Schutte’s (two star Michelin chef) 10 course tasting menu restaurant. Velas 10 is nestled in the corner of the resort and has some of the best steaks I’ve had in my life. Cabrillo is their pool-side restaurant that offers a range of freshly made ceviche, local chocolate clams & tequila. And Azul is their tasty international buffet and a la carte dining spot for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Our first night we ate at Velas 10. I loved the entire aesthetic of the restaurant, with marble floors, lots of greenery & oceanfront views. We ate here after Tony proposed, so I was definitely overwhelmed with excitement and emotion. I was so excited I barely ate that day, so I remember eating my perfectly cooked steak in about 2 minutes.
Our second night we went to Cocina de Autor for the 10 course tasting menu! Every single dish was amazing. From the craft cocktails we got when we arrived to the impeccable service, creative presentations and outstanding food. It was by far, one of the most memorable meals I’ve ever had.
Our third night, we started with drinks and a tequila & mezcal tasting. It was so fun learning about the different types of tequila and mezcal, how they’re made & how to pair them. We even got to try Sal de Chapulin, a traditional salt paired with mezcal, made out of dried & toasted grasshoppers! Oh and we also tried Chicatanas. Also known as giant flying aunts! That’s right… we ate dried and toasted ANTS! To be fair, they just kind of tasted like small, burnt pieces of popcorn. But it was really cool getting to try something new that’s part of the local culture. Then, we went to Frida, the hotel’s contemporary Mexican restaurant. As always, the service, ambiance & food were all amazing. The grilled octopus and pozole were two of my favorite dishes!
For breakfast, we went to Azul every morning for their massive buffet. They had every type of breakfast food you can imagine, and then some! I was obsessed with the made to order quesadilla station. They grill cheese over a flat top before putting your choice of tortilla on top and stuffing it with meat, my mouth is watering just thinking about it. There’s also a fun Bloody Mary station you can use if you want to try your hand at bartending and whipping up your own drink!
I’ve gotta say, the spa is probably what first sold me on the resort. We saw it on our tour and I immediately went to our room and booked massages. I knew I had to experience it first hand. The expansive 35,000-square-foot spa offers unlimited options for pampering and relaxation. They have a really interesting feature called Spa Atelier, where you can take part in 50 to 80 minute workshops inspired by age-old healing practices and rituals like Ayurvedic medicine.
After our couples massage, we took advantage of the SE Spa Water Journey, a water ceremony exclusive to Grand Velas.
You start by following a seven-step water ceremony. It’s great for eliminating the tension and anxiety by treating your body and indulging your senses with alternating temperatures, varying pressure, aromatherapy and visual stimuli. The water ceremony is composed of:
- Sauna – You start the ritual by going into the sauna, where an attendant brings you a cold towel and cucumbers to put on your eyes. After 5 minutes, she came in and got me to move on to the next room.
- Ice room- After the sauna, you’re led to an ice room. I’ve actually never been in an ice room, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. The attendant gave me aloe vera to put on my body. The cold room brings your body temperature back down and you rub ice on your skin, helping boost circulation and improve inflammation.
- Steam with chromotherapy – The best way to explain the steam room would be to imagine a dark room with fiberoptic lights on the ceiling that look like stars. Once you’re sitting down, the attendant brings you a conditioner to put on your hair and body. Then, the steam begins to pour in and the lights change colors. The colors of the lights, or chromotherapy is the science of using colors to adjust body vibrations to frequencies that result in health and harmony. Each color possesses frequencies of a specific vibration and each vibration is related to different physical symptoms.
- Sensory shower – After the steam room, you walk through a row of different shower heads with different pressures and temperatures.
- Thermal lounges – When you’re finished with the shower, you can lay on one of their heated lounge chairs. Literally the best invention ever.
- Sensation Pool – After going through the rooms (which are private for men and women), we went into the coed pool area. The indoor pool has various circuits: cascades, bubble beds, multisensory jets, and bubble geysers.
- Jacuzzi -After the pool, we went into the jacuzzi for about ten minutes to relax.
- Polar Pool – To finish the ritual, we dunked in the ice cold plunge pool. Then immediately jumped back into the pool to warm up!
Other Cool Highlights
The resort offers tons of outdoor recreational activities. You can also arrange for additional activities like snorkeling, scuba diving, whale watching, ATV excursions, camel excursions, horse back riding, sky tours or even a yacht rental! The concierge can help you set these activities up with outside agencies for an additional cost.
The Kid’s Club (means for kids 4 to 12) has tons of fun activities like cookie baking and piñata making. While the Teen’s Club has foosball and pool tables, breakdancing classes and a huge collection of video games!
The resort also offers event services. They have multiple venue options, depending on the vibe you’re going for and size of your party. The hotel even offers wedding planning!
Whether you’re looking for a quick, relaxing trip or an extended vacation in the sun, I can’t speaker higher of a resort. Grand Velas was absolutely amazing and quickly became our favorite place to relax, unwind & recharge. From the food and service to the spa and breathtaking views, Tony & I hope to make Grand Velas our official “spot” in Cabo and return again next year!
How to Book
Head over to Grand Velas Website to book a room, or email them directly at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any special requests, it’s a special occasion or you have any questions! They can also help you arrange airport pick up and drop off, as well as any activities you’re interested in.