Travelers have long turned to Los Cabos, Mexico, for a retreat that revives the body and inspires the soul. At one of the beachside town’s newest hotels, that inspiration goes to a whole new level. Hotel El Ganzo appeals to artists, musicians, foodies and design buffs through innovative details at every turn. Read on to learn all about this fascinating luxury hotel.
What: Los Cabos,is packed with a plethora of beachside resorts, but the recently opened, 72-room Hotel El Ganzo offers something a bit different — a unique boutique property, situated on a quaint local fishing marina, with a fresh focus on the arts. In fact, according to the creator of the hotel, Pablo Sanchez-Navarro, the lovely, stark-white interior walls of the modern hotel won’t be white for long. They serve as a blank canvas for the many artists-in-residence Hotel El Ganzo plans to host; each guest room eventually will be repainted by—and named for—its artist.
Meanwhile, the hotel’s musicians-in-residence treat guests to intimate performances in the cozy, open-air lobby Thursday through Sunday and follow up with recordings in the “secret” basement studio, accessible via trap door in the lobby floor. You can find these recordings, dubbed the “El Ganzo Sessions,” on the hotel’s website. Since it opened its doors in November 2012, popular singer-songwriters Joshua Radin and Damien Rice have played the hotel, and Charlie Sheen hosted a private rooftop party that featured a performance by Slash.
Where: The modern, pristine-white Hotel El Ganzo sits at the end of a dirt road in the still-somewhat undeveloped Puerto Los Cabos, near the quaint town of San José del Cabo. It’s Cabo San Lucas’s less touristy neighbor near the tip of the Baja Peninsula in Mexico. While the hotel is perched on a marina, and offers uniquely pretty views of docks, small boats and lovely stone banks, there is a beach and clubhouse across the marina for guests’ use, and even a protected area for swimming — an amenity many Los Cabos resorts can’t offer because of the area’s dangerous riptides.
When: As far as we’re concerned, the time to visit Hotel El Ganzo is now, while the hotel — and its gorgeous rooftop infinity pool—is still new and relatively unknown. If you’re a music fan, you might plan your visit around the hotel’s musical guests—contact the hotel for a schedule. But of course Los Cabos is best between October and April, when temperatures are in the 70s to 80s, as opposed to the summer months, when temps can rise to more than 100 degrees Fahrenheit during the day.
Why: It’s rare that a hotel genuinely feels like home, but Hotel El Ganzo’s lobby manages to pull off sophistication and comfort at the same time, with area rugs, one-of-a-kind art, movable furniture, two gas fireplaces and long, pinewood communal dining tables that invite guests to mingle over a meal. At night, a fire pit on the lower-level deck surrounded by low chairs draws you in for cozy conversation with other guests. And during the day, you can enjoy the rooftop infinity pool, hot tub, cushioned cabanas and flawlessly serene vistas of the marina and (as of yet) undeveloped desert landscape down the coast.
If you want to eat at the hotel, we recommend the rooftop restaurant’s delicious sushi, sourced straight from the local fishermen in the marina below. In fact, the hotel built the slips and cutting stations specifically to accommodate the area’s fishermen, and you can even buy fish yourself and have the hotel chef prepare it for you. Guest rooms at Hotel El Ganzo don’t disappoint, either, and include separate soaking tubs and showers, unusually comfortable beds with soft, white duvets and fluffy pillows, and private balconies with Mexican tile whirlpool tubs and plenty of fragrant bath salts. And the welcome amenity of fresh guacamole, salsa, pico de gallo and chips, as well as watermelon juice, is just a sign of what your stay here has in store.
Photos Courtesy of Hotel El Ganzo and Jaime Navarro