THE VACATION REPORT:
With a dining scene as vibrant as its turquoise waters, this Mexican peninsula is the bohemian gourmand’s perfect setting. The Style Report journeys to Baja California Sur.
This article was originally published on MATCHESFASHION.COM.
If you are partial to desert landscapes, bluer-than-blue lagoons and ultra-fresh seafood, you will love Baja California Sur. The Mexican peninsula is in prime position for coastal jaunts – whether you choose to surf, whale-watch or simply luxuriate – and is home to a host of esteemed seafood joints. The Style Report explores the finest spots on the peninsula.
Stay at Marquis Los Cabos (marquisloscabos.com) and you may not want to leave. This luxe, all-inclusive hotel is nestled where the desert mountains meet the Sea of Cortez, near the southern tip of the Baja peninsula. Furnished with Latin American art, marble floors and touches of bamboo, the luxuriously spacious suites feature everything from private, rooftop plunge pools to wet bars and you can even opt for a private butler for the ultimate stress-free getaway. The hotel boasts not one but three beachfront infinity pools, and myriad activities to keep guests occupied, from wine tastings to Spanish lessons.
For a more bijou setting, try Hacienda Cerritos (haciendacerritos.com). This pretty hacienda, located on a private bluff, features 12 charming rooms, many of which have an additional outdoor shower overlooking the ocean. Enjoy a massage in the cliff-side palapa, explore the artist colony in the nearby historic town of Todos Santos, or drink margaritas at the Cerritos Beach Club, just moments away from the boutique hotel. There’s a place for modernists too, at Drift (driftsanjose.com). With a sleek, rustic design concept inspired by Baja ranches and industrial architecture, it is Baja California Sur’s ultimate ‘anti-resort’. Think floating concrete-based beds, ceramic floor tiles and minimal steel furnishings.
EAT & DRINK
Be sure to reserve a teppan-yaki table at Sakke – early bookings are recommended. The restaurant – one of five at Marquis Los Cabos – boasts a smooth, modern interior and open kitchen, where fans of sushi and sashimi are well catered for. Meanwhile, Francophiles will love the hotel’s Restaurant Canto Del Mar. With a sweeping terrace and views overlooking the ocean, the restaurant serves up a four-course menu of French cuisine, masterminded by acclaimed chef Thierry Dufour.
Known among locals as the best breakfast in town, La Esquina (laesquinats.com) is a must in the morning. Escape from the tourist hubbub to the airy patio, to enjoy a plateful of Rancher’s potatoes doused in salsa. If you’re in the market for some of the peninsula’s finest fish, head to Rancho Pescadero (ranchopescadero.com); the fish tacos are legendary. Meanwhile, at Hierbabuena (hierbabuenarestaurante.com), honest, organic food is on the menu, changing with the daily harvest. The farm-to-table restaurant prides itself on its wood-fired pizzas – the cilantro-pesto topped Pizza Buena is an excellent choice.
The detoxification wrap is perfect for renewing city-stressed skin, while the hot-stone massage makes for the ultimate relaxation.
Sunset-served cocktails don’t come better than those on the menu at Acre (acrebaja.com), and rightly so – the in-house cocktail programme designer spent the last two years travelling all over Mexico, researching and sourcing exotic and obscure Mexican spirits. You will be able to sip Sabio Sours (reposado tequila, Cointreau, lime and sage syrup) in one of the on-site tree houses – soon to be added to the 25-acre farmland occupied by the restaurant and bar. And a visit to Baja wouldn’t be complete without checking out Hotel California (hotelcaliforniabaja.com). Widely believed to be the inspiration behind the iconic Eagles song, the historic hotel’s bar is an eclectic spot to enjoy a Tequila Sunrise – and it comes complete with an Eagles-heavy soundtrack.
Indulge in a day of pampering at the in-house holistic spa at Marquis Los Cabos. Choose from a menu of personalised treatments using natural products such as clay, salts and seaweeds, in one of the spa’s ocean-view rooms. The detoxification wrap is perfect for renewing city-stressed skin, while the hot-stone massage makes for the ultimate relaxation.
Maritime delights are one of Baja’s biggest draws. Get a glimpse at grey whales on a whale-watching tour or board Besame Mucho, a Turkish gulet which offers the opportunity to snorkel with sea lions and discover secluded beaches, while cruising around the sparkling waters of the Sea of Cortez. (scottdunn.com)
Yoga enthusiast? Pachamama (pachamamamexico.com) has got you – and your sun salutations – covered. This boutique hotel and yoga retreat is located just five minutes outside of Todos Santos, but feels like a remote getaway thanks to the surrounding Baja landscape. You’ll feel revived after a week’s stay in one of the hotel’s deluxe teepees, enjoying vegetarian Mexican breakfasts and daily yoga.