One of our jobs as travel advisors (some say “perks”) is to visit destinations around the globe to gain an insider’s perspective, then share it to help you make your best vacation choices. Yes, it’s a tough job, but we make that sacrifice for you. 😉 Two of our Covington staff recently traveled (separately) to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico to assess the recovery status of the tourism facilities after Hurricane Odile in September.
Susan Morris-Morrow, Covington’s Virtuoso Liaison & Vacation Sales Manager, visited the Secrets Puerto Los Cabos Golf & Spa Resort in November. Barbi Partlow, Tropical Vacation Specialist, stayed at the same Secrets as well as the Sandos Finesterra Los Cabos in December.
Secrets Puerto Los Cabos Golf & Spa Resort – “Calm oasis after the storm…the ‘Secrets’ out!”
Susan said, “When my husband and I went to Cabo in November, the airport had just recently reopened for operations. You could tell there had been extensive damage by the boarded up areas and some damage to the floors. On the 30-40 minute ride from the airport to Secrets Puerto Los Cabos, the roads were in good shape, but we saw some building damage and a lot of tile roofs being replaced; however, there were many, many workers in full swing making repairs.”
“The obvious thing at the Secrets property was the damage done to the gardens. The plantings were all quite small and new and some of the drainage ditches were being replaced. There were many gardeners working constantly! The Secrets hotel buildings themselves escaped major damage and were all in order by the time we arrived.”
Barbi reports, “After the devastation of hurricane Odile in September 2014, this all-inclusive resort arose from the destruction of the surrounding area and is an oasis of luxury and relaxation. Rooms are spacious and well-appointed, with comfortable beds and luxurious baths. The jetted tub on the balcony and the humongous soaking tub in the bathroom were nice features.”
Susan reflected, “There are gorgeous ocean views, but the beach isn’t swimmable due to strong rip currents. It’s best for walking and watching the sunrise! There is a nice beach deck with a bar just a short walk from the swimming pools, which have plenty of lounge chairs and shade umbrellas. There are also views of the Los Puerto’s incredible public golf course – 15 of the 18 holes overlook the water. The first nine were designed by Greg Norman; the second nine by Jack Nicolas. This course would certainly be a challenge!”
Barbi said, “The service was generally very good, and employees answered every request with ‘It’s my pleasure’. There were some gaps in service, however. The main pool bar was always abuzz with activity, and bartenders mainly filled orders for the roaming pool wait staff, leaving those sitting at the bar a little dry for a time, until things slowed. Although a bit frustrating, it didn’t deter too much from the overall experience.”
Barbi and her husband enjoyed a couple’s massage at the lovely spa and determined it was “the best Swedish massage ever, delivered with skill and care by the therapists. Wonderful!”
Susan noted, “The food ran from good to excellent. The Italian restaurant, in particular, was outstanding.” She also shared that Secrets Puerto Los Cabos is a gated community with a guard station at the entrance and security personnel posted at various places to keep unauthorized visitors from walking on site from the public beach or golf course.
Both Susan and Barbi mentioned that the bar area has plenty of outdoor seating and is quite active until 1:00 am. They suggested for quiet accommodations, request a room location away from the hubbub, such as Building 8 oceanfront.
They also agreed that Secrets Puerto Los Cabos is a sophisticated spin on the all-inclusive experience, and delivered very well.
Sandos Finisterra Los Cabos – “Close to town and great views!”
Barbi and her husband stayed at Sandos Finisterra in early December, 2014. She reports, “This hotel is in a great location right by the marina in Cabo San Lucas, just a few minutes’ walk from town and a plethora of shops and restaurants. The area is bouncing back well after the devastation of hurricane Odile a couple of months back, and the Sandos property is a great choice for families, couples and singles that like to be close to the heartbeat of town.”
“Situated up on a promontory, accommodations are decent in size. We were in a Jr. Suite, which had a nice and firm king bed and jetted tub in the room. A small balcony overlooked the roof of the main building and the ocean/pool beyond. Lighting in the bath area was dim, making it difficult to apply make-up. I’d like to see the hotel kick up the wattage or change up bathroom lighting fixtures for better lighting.”
Food outlets offered a fair choice of options. The Don Diego restaurant was the main hub for buffet selections, and overall quality was very good for this all-inclusive resort. Friendly staffers were at our service and were very attentive.
The beach is non-swimmable, but the main pool area beachside is huge and a fun place to hang out with good bar service. A weekly schedule of activities and entertainment are available; some nights were a bit loud with techno music blasting from the pool area.
In summation, the Sandos Finisterra offers a variety of customers a good vacation experience and value for money.
Cabo is bouncing back from the hurricane damage very quickly and is anxious for visitors to return. Flights to San Jose del Cabo from the east coast are only a couple hours longer than to Cancun, and Cabo offers a good vacation experience for the money. For more first-hand impressions and help planning your own trip to Cabo San Lucas, contact Barbi directly at email@example.com or 804-343-2268.
Unless otherwise noted, all photos credited to Barbi Partlow.