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“Terrific stay even with opening hiccups”

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Secrets Puerto Los Cabos Golf & Spa Resort
Ranked #11 of 42 Hotels in San Jose del Cabo
Certificate of Excellence
Jamison, Pennsylvania
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Terrific stay even with opening hiccups”
Reviewed 7 January 2014

We stayed from Christmas Eve until New Years Eve. The staff is wonderful. Every employee that we met said that it was a pleasure to help us and their actions reinforced that. The view from our room was beautiful. We had to change rooms as my fiancee had a knee replacement and we wanted to be in a closer building. The front desk staff headed by Angel took care of that for us. The other room would have been perfect if it were not for her knee. It was not far at all for someone with 2 good knees (smile). As everyone said in their reviews, the place is beautiful. The spa was a wonderful experience and I suggest you get there early (about an hour or so before any scheduled treatment to take advantage of the hydrotherapy as well as the sauna/steam and the quiet areas that are available at no charge when you book a treatment.

You will never go hungry, breakfast, lunch dinner, room service, or a latte can all be had a various restaurants. The beach was underused and was beautiful and serene. The pool area was relaxing and a great way to spend the day.

Our room was beautiful. Especially the bathroom. With an over sized shower (with a seat) to the spa tub to the 2 sinks that were on opposite sides of the room to make things very convenient. And the views from each room is overlooking the sea of cortez.

I played golf at the Greg Norman/Jack Nicklaus designed course which was beautiful and fun. There is plenty of food and drink (free) as was the driving range. The club house was a mile or so away (almost completely uphill) but you can walk it if you don't have clubs.

Any issue that we did encounter due to the newness of the resort (opened less than 2 weeks when we arrived) was handled by the resident manager, Salvador Gutierrez. This is a dedicated manager with the happiness of each guest as his priority.

Since we stayed at a sister resort before in Cabo and had a great time, we were really happy to have stayed at Secrets Puerto Los Cabos.

We spent 2.5 hours horseback riding (they pick you up for an hours drive as part of the $100.00 per person fee) which we loved. We did the sunset ride.

We are planning a return visit around October.

Room Tip: We always select the highest floor which is 4 or 5 depending on the building
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank stephen1236
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Overland Park, Kansas
Level 1 Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 January 2014 via mobile

Like so many others, we booked this trip without benefit of existing reviews or even photos. It seemed like a high high risk high reward roll of the dice in light of the attractive promotional pricing ($3750 for five nights including airfare). High reward it was.

Although we have never booked an all inclusive resort before, we were pretty confident this was among the best of the best. Yes it is new and little things came up short, but on the stuff that counts we were not disappointed. Resort is very very pretty, views awesome (water and mountains from anywhere on property), golf course spectacular, pools very nice (really preferred the smaller, quieter infinity pool), rooms nice enough, beach always empty and beautiful, food delicious, and most important to our experience, the staff could not have been nicer - they try so earnestly to make your stay pleasant and hassle free even when it wasn't perfect it was not even remotely frustrating.

Only negatives were that a couple of the staff did not understand English very well (causing for example one course of your five course meal not to be served, but it's not like we left hungry), room cleaning was forgotten one day (because they had us down as leaving but this was promptly and sincerely addressed as soon as we brought this to attention ), and entertainment in our view was pretty cheesy (although the effort was most endearing, they do try hard). Oh and watch out for the short 2-3 inch steps...easy to take a serious spill because they are hard to see (yes I did and I was not the only one...they were quick to offer medical attention and put up warning signs but short of painting them neon not sure how this design flaw can be remedied).

Tips:

--no need to book the swim out suites, waste of money, view of ocean is blocked and it seems pointless without privacy
-- if the hotel is crowded eat early or late, as the nicer restaurants are smaller and lines are a drag (if there is a line, get your buzzer and wander over to Market Cafe for a drink and appetizer while you wait
--if it is not crowded be sure to go to the restaurants you want to try. They shut down some spots when it is not busy and you may not get another chance if you are not staying a full week
-- Portofino (Italian) and Oceania (seafood) are the best dinner places in our view, didn't try Asian but heard it was so-so, El Patio was fine but less impressive
--baristas at the coffee shop rock... so kind, excellent service and remembered my order by day two; remember to tip there, no one seems to and they put a lot of effort into their work
--breakfasts great at both the Market Cafe (buffet fare but stepped up, usually I hate them but this was good) and Oceana.
--Seaside Cafe best at lunch
--tip, always... Sure you will get better service (tip your bartender upfront and you will never want for a fresh drink) but mostly because you will feel better taking care of the people who take care of you
--don't just ask for a type of drink, ask for it with the brand of liquor you prefer...we kept forgetting and it makes a difference; also don't be afraid to ask them to make it strong, not much liquor in the typical pour but they are happy to make it whatever strength you like
--unlike the reviews saying meals are small we found the portions perfectly sized - small enough you can order all four or five courses and feel good about it; you cannot go hungry at this resort
-- it is very cool outside at night, bring a light coat or warm sweater, I read this from another review and skimped on the sweater and really regretted it
--book a private car, same cost give or take $5 an such a nicer experience than sharing, we used Impala (60 each way)

All in all it was a great trip and we would recommend it to anyone.

Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
10 Thank 816callmecrazy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 January 2014

This is a beautiful resort with amazing views of the golf course and Pacific. Our rooms were also well appointed and beautiful. We had no issues with service in the bars or at the pool and the breakfast buffet at the Market Cafe was also very good. Unfortunately, we had terrible experiences with dinner service in 3 of the 5 restaurants and wound up eating in town 3 out of 7 nights of our stay, which is disappointing when you are paying for the "Unlimited Luxury" all-inclusive package. We experienced 1 to 2 hour delays between ordering and receiving our main entree, the waitstaff would forget what we ordered because they did not write it down, one of our entrees never arrived and we had to hail two different managers to get it, and our food arrived undercooked. Given that the hotel was only 50% full during our stay, unless they improve dinner service they are going to have major issues.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Jacqueline F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Walla Walla, Washington
Level 5 Contributor
60 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 January 2014 via mobile

We travelled at the last part of Dec, staying through New Years.
The good:
The resort was new and beautiful. It had only been open for 2 weeks.
Friendly staff- namely Eliuid in Portofinos, Jan by the pool and David, bartender at the Preferred Club, server at the Coco Cafe.
Preferred club building was fantastic, with great snacks and drinks
Rendezvous bar was really cool, birdcage theme and beautiful
Himitsu and Portofinos was amazing
Free wifi
Spa and hydrotherapy pools were awesome! We took advantage of the exfoliation and massage special
Pool area was fantastic, very clean grounds. Water temp was perfect
Rooms were impeccable. We had an ocean view with a balcony. When taking a shower you could see through the window out to the ocean.
Attentive service

The not so good:
Insulation through the walls- we could hear our neighbors often
Housekeeping was hit and miss. We did not get turndown service the entire time we were there.
As UVC members were are entitled to a free upgrade if it's available. We were told we would have to pay an additional $250/night for this.
No reservations necessary but could not get into the teppanyaki at the Himitsu restaurant.
No bathrooms in close proximity to the beach.
Lack of pool chairs during busy times
Food was mediocre. We stayed at dreams Los cabos in August and their food was much better. They had hamburgers and hot dogs poolside- I would have preferred street tacos and burritos.

Resort is far from Cabo San Lucas and it was a $50-60 one way trip to downtown. Plan accordingly. It is great if you want quiet and R&R. There is no shuttle to downtown.
All in all a great place, with some room for improvement. That being said, we did not have high expectations as it had only been open for 2 weeks. I would definitely return again.

Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
5 Thank TravelGinRN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Big Sky, Montana
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 January 2014

We spent the week between Christmas and New Year's Day at this new resort and were pleased beyond all expectations. We were expecting lots of hiccups since the place only opened 10 days prior to our arrival. We encountered only a few minor problems. From check in to check out the service was awesome and by that I mean every single staffer we encountered was helpful, smiling, and gracious. I was not expecting that.

We booked a two-double bed room as our college student daughter joined us for the week. The room was a little tight for three adults but not the bathroom which was oversized even accounting for the egg-shaped Jacuzzi tub. The terrace was a lovely place to sit and watch the sunset.

The locale is beautiful. We have stayed on Riviera Maya before and enjoyed the beach, but Puerto Los Cabos adds the extra element of mountains to the west which made for more to gaze at from a pool-side lounger and lovely sunsets. The beach was is extremely clean compared to the area south of Cancun and also very deserted. On the downside, the sand is very soft and there is a significant slope down to the water, so it's not a running beach, or even a good long walking beach. While no flags are posted, all info from the resort and Trip Advisor posts is that the water is not safe for swimming. But I joined the 10:00 am beach walk, and after a 20 min. walk west we all went swimming near the sea wall by the marina.

The food was very good. We ate at all of the restaurants except El Patron, the Mexican spot because the New Year's Eve celebration pre-empted the opportunity. We generally arrived prior to 6:30 pm and were immediately seated. Upon leaving, we did encounter lines. So go early if you don't want to wait. The New Year's Eve dinner and party was over the top. The staff outdid themselves.

My husband played three rounds of golf on the adjacent course. The clubhouse is about 3/4 mi . from the resort lobby. One minor problem was no one on the staff knew how to get there on foot. Hubby wanted to walk and eventually found it on his own. While he golfed, daughter and I visited the spa for a facial (her) and a pedicure (me.) The spa staff was as gracious as the hotel staff and the facility is lovely. Go early and take advantage of the "hydrotherapy circuit": steam room, sauna, hot and cold pools.

The only other minor problem was restocking of the mini fridge in our room. I don't think it is happening daily. Maybe every third day ??? at least in our experience. The resort literature advises against drinking the tap water, and the three of us drank all four bottles of water in the first six hours of occupation. But when I asked for it to be "refreshed" on day 3, it was by the end of the day.

My husband agrees with other reviewers that the fitness facility is too small for the size of the resort. We were told that occupancy was at about 50% and he found particularly the weight training equipment was not adequate for more than two users at a time. We also foresee problems around the pool deck once occupancy increases. Loungers will be hard to come by and there isn't space to add many more. The beach area, a short walk from the pool did have plenty of open lounge chairs and there is a bar there.

But at 50% it was perfect. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay whose purpose was purely relaxation. And we were blown away by the friendliness and service provided by all of the staff.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Kayy12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
St. Louis
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 January 2014 via mobile

This resort was spectacular! Went with the boyfriend and another couple and had an amazing time. The good was good for all inclusive and the kitchen was accommodating to the taste of the guest so if you wanted something a little different they would make it. The barefoot bar was the best for lunch by the pool with fresh guacamole everyday. The servers were great with drinks and you just ha to ask for top self and they would give it to you. They also will make drinks that they think you will like and they were always delicious.
Checking in was a little difficult because our room wasn't ready and it took an hour to get our bags but given it was the 2nd week it was open I kept and open mind and figured a couple little things may not go right.
The rooms are beautiful and the cleaning service was phenomenal! My room was cleaned and restocked perfectly everyday.
The coco coffee shop was the perfect touch that I have never seen at an all inclusive. I went at least three times a day and the baristas were so nice and made delicious drinks.
The activity team is so fun and nice. The amount of activities were great. We played water volleyball and beach volleyball which were all fun.
Overall the trip was amazing and would love to go back again. I was actually sad to leave and almost missed my flight just to stay.

Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
3 Thank Kati F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portland, Oregon
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 January 2014

I was a bit worried when we booked a hotel with no reviews, but we have been so pleasantly surprised with the location, staff, and facilities. Of course, some things are not finished, but it hasn't gotten in the way. The fact that some buildings aren't open means there are very few people--We've even had the whole beach or a whole pool to ourselves, and we haven't had to wait at any restaurant. Here's a breakdown of the different areas.

Check in:
Short drive from the airport (went through the hotel with AMSTAR). Make sure to go STRAIGHT past EVERYONE in the airport terminal until you are OUTSIDE--As in outdoors! The timeshare people will very slyly try to make you think they're part of the company who is picking you up. Check in at the hotel was very quick. They offered for us to upgrade to the ocean front building for $200/day. We were tempted, but so happy that we turned it down. All of the rooms have an ocean view. We're in 2323. From the map, it looks like a building is blocking our view of the ocean, but the buildings are terraced up, and we have a beautiful view.

Room:
Even though the room is a bit smaller than other resorts we've been to (Barcelo Maya Palace and Excellence Riviera Cancun), they are plenty big. Who needs TWO couches in their room anyway? The patio has a nice view, the bed, pillows and linens are very comfy (and I'm picky about those). The lighting in the room is so nice--so many different options between bright and soft lights. The jacuzzi tub and shower are both wonderful. You have two shower heads to choose from. There are two separate sinks on two sides of the bathroom. It isn't too hot now, but the AC works great. The mini bar is just beer, water, orange juice, and soda (no snacks). There is a nice closet and a few drawers. None of the rooms are too far away, so there's no excessive walking as there are with some resorts.

Food:
It has been good. We really liked the Mexican and Asian. The Italian was good if you like seafood and other meats. They didn't have a chicken option at Italian :(. The buffet food has been consistently good, and we always find something we like. I'm not a huge fan of most of their buffet desserts though--probably a good thing in the long run. It's easy to grab fast-food by the pool anytime (pizza, hot dogs, hamburgers). It was nice to have a coffee shop (with good coffee and some pastries) open throughout the day. Wish they had ice cream somewhere. Room service with the "box" is very nice when you don't want to be disturbed (loved the lasagna and cheesecake).

Drinks:
The house red wine was actually good! First time this has happened at a resort for us. I like fruity blended drinks, and there were plenty to choose from.

Pool:
They're heated and really nice. We never had a problem finding chairs, and the drink service was great. It's easy to find a pool float, and the swim up bar is very nice.

Beach:
I don't know why it's so empty down there! If we weren't alone, there were only a few other couples there. The only time it was a bit busier was during the 4:00 volleyball games, which were a lot of fun. Yes, there is a little tunnel to the beach, but it's definitely not a long walk. You can get basic drinks right at the beach, or you can walk to the other side of the tunnel to another bar to get blended drinks. They have someone on security at all times to make sure nobody wanders onto the beach or into the hotel. They also lock the gate to the tunnel when it gets dark. We walked down into Puerto Los Cabos (the marina) a couple times. The beach does slope, but it's fine for walking. We saw whales and bat rays along the way.

Staff:
Everyone was very friendly and helpful. Even though you can tell they're all learning the ropes, they were all so willing to go above and beyond to get things right. Right after we checked in, they did send us to a desk to ask if we wanted to go to the AMResorts presentation. We just said "no" and were taken to our room. We were never asked about it again.

Nearby Activities:
We walked down to the marina (about 20 minutes), and the first hotel there is the El Ganzo. We rented bikes ($40 for 2 bikes for 4 hours) and toured around the marina, the sculpture gardens, the art walk, and the cactus gardens. It was beautiful. On the other side of the marina, there's a little beach club where we rented stand up paddle boards ($20/hour). You can't swim in most areas, but outside the jetty on either side of the marina is nice for swimming.

We also took a kayak/snorkel trip around the arch in Cabo through Cabo Outfitters. It was amazing!

Overall, it was so worth it! Even though it's still being completed, we had an incredible time!

Room Tip: Don't worry about paying to upgrade. You'll still get an ocean view (unless you have a swim...
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
14 Thank JDOregon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Secrets Puerto Los Cabos Golf & Spa Resort

Property: Secrets Puerto Los Cabos Golf & Spa Resort
Address: Av. De Los Pescadores S/N | Col. La Playita, San Jose del Cabo 23403, Mexico
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Baja California > Baja California Sur > Los Cabos > San Jose del Cabo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#6 Top resorts Hotel in San Jose del Cabo
#9 On the Beach Hotel in San Jose del Cabo
#9 Luxury Hotel in San Jose del Cabo
#10 Spa Hotel in San Jose del Cabo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Secrets Puerto Los Cabos Golf & Spa Resort 4.5*
Number of rooms: 500
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Settled in front of the Sea of Cortez, this all-suite ocean front resort offers 500 spacious suites with finely- appointed amenities, full service spa, gourmet a la carte restaurants and elegant bars and lounges. Surrounded by mountains, the Baja desert and two golf courses design by Jack Nicklaus and Greg Norman, guests will enjoy all the Unlimited-Luxury® privileges they deserve. For added luxury, 150 ocean view suites are reserved for Preferred Club with access to additional privileges. This ocean front resort is just 10 minutes from downtown San Jose del Cabo and 30 minutes from the Los Cabos International Airport. Secrets Puerto Los Cabos Golf & Spa Resort – Secluded. Stunning. Splendor. ... more   less 
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Secrets Puerto Los Cabos Golf & Spa Resort Mexico - San Jose Del Cabo

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