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The new Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos at Costa Palmas has set up shop on the Baja Peninsula's isolated East Cape, and is far from anything resembling a strip of hotel towers or margaritas that you might imagine when you hear the name 'Cabo.'
Opened in October 2019, the property sprawls over two miles of beach, with unobstructed views of the Sierra de la Laguna mountain range, with a luxurious, modern vibe that looks like an Architectural Digest spread at every turn.
A search of the Four Seasons website revealed the lowest possible price for a four-night stay in the entry-level ocean-view room category was $540 per night in mid-summer, which is actually low season due to the hot climate.
In busier seasons, that rate surges, and it's worth noting that a service charge of 15 percent of the room rate is applied to all reservations to cover employee costs. So, it can all add up to very big numbers indeed.
But don't stop reading just yet.
While the nightly rate is more than you might be accustomed to paying, the inclusions associated with it off-set that price significantly, such as complimentary kids' club, substantial off-site excursions, and free kids' meals, all without any up-charge. Considering those costs can typically add hundreds of dollars to a vacation, the room price offers serious overall value, especially when you factor in that it's a brand new, luxury five-star property.
My family and I stayed in an entry-level Ocean-View Room, which was huge for a standard room, at 680 square feet. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to families or anyone looking to maximize the value of their stay while still enjoying luxury amenities.
Keep reading to see why I was so impressed by the Four Seasons Resort Los Cabos at Costa Palmas.
We were greeted to the Four Seasons Los Cabos by welcome beverages, cool towels, and staff prepared to check us in at a seated lounge area. That's when my son managed to fall and skin his knee, shattering our false sense of serenity.
In no time, like magic, a nurse arrived to clean him up with a first-aid kit and a representative from the kids club arrived with a basket of toys for the kids. This, thankfully, promptly stopped any complaining as a result.
All of these details were early indicators of the truly exemplary service we experienced on property, provided by an army of staff.
Next, we reviewed our itinerary: a collection of activities arranged through the hotel. Whereas many high-end resort properties charge for extras such as kayaks or beach bikes, this hotel provided a full menu of on-site and off-site excursions included in room rates. Think ATV tours, horseback riding, guided waterfall hike, ceviche-making and tequila-tasting classes.
For my family of four, I've found such excursions can easily add hundreds of dollars for each activity, and that's before you factor in the required off-site transportation.
The bathroom was spacious, and also provided full ocean views. The freestanding soaking tub was impressive, as was the huge adjacent shower.
Adjacent to our room was construction activity, taking place at the perimeter of the resort. It's both visible and audible at this stage as they still work out finishing touches. Thankfully, I slept without difficulty on the signature plush beds.
Entry-level rooms, such as ours, are located on the middle floor of three-story buildings that are dotted throughout the property and include balconies. If you want a higher floor with even better views, expect to pay a minimum of about $100 more per night for these upgraded rooms.
Downstairs, rooms feature private plunge pools, which will add approximately another $100 per night to stay in one of these.
Beyond that, a slate of suites offer additional options for upgrading.
The Four Seasons is built across a huge stretch (two miles!) of swimmable beach, which is actually quite rare for Cabo. Many hotels are located on beaches with strong tides that make swimming unsafe, so the Four Seasons offers a huge advantage with a beach you can actually use to the fullest.
There are also six swimming pools on-site, with options for families or adults only. On our afternoon by the pool (the one day of our four-day stay that weather permitted), we were offered a tray of margaritas, passed complimentary as a 3 p.m. amenity.
There's an 18-hole golf course, plus a sports and activities center with fitness equipment, volleyball, an eye-catching cobalt blue basketball court, and two tennis courts. The hotel also offers access to the exclusive Costa Palmas Marina.
The on-site Oasis Spa is a true standout. It has 10 freestanding treatment rooms, each with its own massive footprint that's both indoors and outside. The spa has separate wet areas and locker rooms for women and men, including high-end products and chaises surrounding luxe pools and saunas. The connected Rossano Ferritti Salon has chic, spaceship-like salon chairs with million-dollar views through floor-to-ceiling windows that overlook the mountains.
The property also has a kids club, known across the Four Seasons chain as Kids for All Seasons. While not as expansive as some others, this one is remarkably well equipped and staffed. In addition to games and toys, it offers a full slate of activities. My own kids did a guacamole-making class, dream catcher art project, and made tie-dyed T-shirts.
But the best activity of all was probably their own personal piñata party on the beach. The staff walked the kids over to the sand, rigged the giant piñata between two palm tree, and my twins got all the bounty to themselves, since we were there in low season. They never wanted to step away from the activities, giving us plenty of grown-folks time.
At other resorts, we've paid up to $30 an hour for babysitting. Considering that the kids club is provided free to guests as part of the hotel rate from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, we saved a lot of money.
The Four Seasons has five options for food and drinks.
The most high end is Estiatorio Milos, an outpost of the seafood restaurant founded by chef Costas Spiliadis, which also has locations in Montreal, New York, Athens, Las Vegas, Miami, and London. It's right on the beach and is also the spot where the hotel's elegant buffet breakfast takes place.
The poolside cafe Casa de Brasa serves twists on Mexican favorites (including a killer guacamole), plus an excellent tequila selection.
El Puesto is primarily a ceviche bar, with outrageous, sweeping ocean views.
Keep it casual at Ginger's, with grab-and-go options like pastries and gelato, as well as a pool table and teen area with both digital and analog games.
In-room dining is available 24 hours a day.
But perhaps the best part for traveling families is that kids under five eat free at restaurants, and even through room service. So take a moment to add up the cash value of that perk alone.
In short? Not much! And that's part of the point of this location, which feels very remote. It's a great place to come and spend a lot of time on property, making good use of the facilities and getting your money's worth from the room rate.
That said, the resort is a half-hour drive to the community of Santiago. From there, there's a short hike that leads to a waterfall pouring down from granite cliffs. It's so pretty, it almost looks fake. Even my five-year-old twins were capable of doing this hike, and we all refreshed with a swim beneath it.
Or, head to the 19th-century mining town of El Triunfo, where an array of old buildings have been restored and converted to restaurants, boutiques, art galleries, and a museum.
Expect a winding drive of about an hour each way to access SJD airport.
Given the hotel's newness, online reviews are still sparse. There were just 20 on Trip Advisor at the time of this writing, with a "Very Good" 4.0 out of 5 average rating. The majority of these reviewers gave it an "Excellent" rating, but the critics echoed similar concerns, mainly about the property needing to work out its early kinks.
"Despite the exemplary service and location, this Four Seasons is not ready for prime time," one wrote.
Another echoed, "It's open, but not operationally ready," citing a lack of consistent pool and hot tub heating among the concerns, which is something we also noticed during our visit.
Who stays here: Well-funded business travelers and companies, including those who book full buyouts. Sophisticated couples with the expectation of top-end luxury also come here, as do families seeking an amenity-rich experience for adults and kids alike, without much travel or jet lag, especially from the southwestern U.S.
We like: The kids' club runs a truly exemplary program, including piñata parties on the beach, local cooking classes, and a range of art projects.
We love (don't miss this feature!): The spa here is a must-visit. The grounds are sprawling and ultra-luxurious. Women and men each have their own lounge areas with expansive wet areas and high-end products. It's a standout destination spa when compared against any other I've seen.
We think you should know: Most of the common spaces are largely open to the elements. If the weather suits your preferences, you'll love this characteristic. If the weather is not cooperating, or you prefer to spend more time indoors, you'll find yourself revisiting the same few places. It's also worth repeating that this hotel is one of the few in the Cabo area with a swimmable beach.
We'd do this differently next time: During our visit, the wind was harsh, so we had to opt out of many of the outdoor relaxation options and excursions. Next time, in a more mild climate, I'll spend more time lounging by the pools, sunning and swimming on the huge expanse of swimmable beach, and taking advantage of more off-site excursions, such as an ATV tour, and horseback riding on the beach.