My wife and I travelled to San Jose Del Cabo to stay with some relatives, and broke up our trip by staying at this resort for three days and three nights in Mid-April, 2013. I was somewhat leery of the expenses we might incur, given some of the reviews I had read prior to the trip. If you are reasonably informed leading up to your stay, you will have a very pleasant experience, as my wife and I did.
Upon check-in I was informed that the resort was placing a hold on my credit card of roughly $600 USD (approximately $200 USD per night). The process went fairly quickly and we were directed to the concierge desk. As you likely know, the concierge desk informs you of all the resort has to offer, but will also pitch the timeshare breakfast/tour to you, as the timeshare is actually co-located on the resort. The gentlemen was nice enough about it - we only had to tell him politely twice that we weren't interested in it. After that, we were shown to our room and did not have any other hassles in terms of a sales pitch for the duration of our stay on the property.
Pools: The property is well-planned and in immaculate condition. There are three pools that overlook the ocean, with another two pools located further back in the property (one is in the timeshare area). There was ample seating at the pools for the time we were there. The resort makes a conscious effort to limit the holding of prime chairs with towels with their signage...but let's face it - you can't effectively enforce courtesy.
Beach: While many highlight the beach as a weakness of the resort, I found it to be quite the opposite. The beach has a sharp incline towards the water which causes some pretty unpredictable and dangerous wave action. For the most part, the beach was off-limits for swimming. However, as a result, there was nearly nobody hanging out under the palapas down there, which meant a semi-private beach area for my wife and I. The wave action was nice to watch and really relaxing - at least for me. Further, the beach property is quite lengthy, due to the size of the resort property. You can spend a lot of time walking out there.
Restaurants: We went to Girasoles each day. For $16.50 USD per person, we were able to order as many dishes off the breakfast menu as we wanted, with included coffee and mimosas. There is a beautiful view of the Sea of Cortez and we were usually set until dinner time. We only went out for one dinner when we were there, and it was the fancier one (can't recall the name). They had a special on Saturday evenings for an assortment of Asian Tapas - well prepared and delicious for about $40 USD each. The prices were equivalent to an above-average steakhouse back home. Other times we had nachos and tacos either by the pool, on the beach or via room service. They were all slightly expensive, but not prohibitively so.
Bars: There are happy hours available beginning at 11 am each day until 5 pm for the pool/beach area, and until 10 pm in some of the restaurants. The happy hours rotate, so become familiar with them if you plan to have a few drinks during your stay. Two-for-one drinks are much more affordable than paying full price.
Shuttle: There is a shuttle that runs into Cabo San Lucas for $10 round-trip per person. The shuttle takes you to the mall, which is very north-americanized. If you're a gringo target like me (white guy with a straw hat and back pack), you will be mauled by locals trying to sell you things the second you go to explore the touristy city of Cabo. We spend about 1 hour walking around the area and decided to hop on the next shuttle back. You're likely not going to get an authentic Mexican experience visiting Cabo, nor will you save a great deal on meals - again, it really is quite touristy.
Tips: Pack a bottle or two of liquor to save yourself some money. We stopped at the Costco close by before coming and picked up some very inexpensive bottles of booze.
If you're not interested in the timeshare, just don't do it. Why waste so much of your precious vacation time to be pressured into a purchase you don't want to make?
While the resort accepts Mexican Pesos, it is in your best interest to pay in US dollars, as there calculations give you an unfavorable rate if using Pesos.
If you're in the SPG program, cash and points is pretty reasonable for this property (only $60/night for the room itself).
That's about all I can think of. We had an amazing time and would definitely look to stay here again when travelling in the area.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
We are happy that you enjoyed your stay with us at the Sheraton Hacienda del Mar and very much appreciate your comments. While we understand that strong waves, as they prevail,can be disappointing for those who would like to swim in the ocean close to the resort, we consider the sparkling Sea of Cortez with its dramatic surf and our white sand beaches a natural part of our environment and encourage our guests to enjoy its beauty, as you have, along with our extensive swimming and lounging pools. We look forward to welcoming you again -- and thank you for your kind words.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.