Casa del Mar was, from the word go, the nicest resort we've ever had the pleasure to stay in.
HOTEL: We got a Herbal iced tea upon check-in. We got a 50% price on Orbitz. We had a tour of the property at check-in before. Nice touch. That's the difference at Zoetry- multiple and frequent "nice touches." The beds are more than comfortable - my husband has a chronic back problem, and he's NEVER slept well on a hotel bed prior to this trip. For those who also have "issues" with beds, wanted to put that up front. We were in room 102, a junior suite, for the first day, in the main building, and asked to be on the 200 level based on the reviews here. They accommodated us, even though they had to do some rearranging of who -they- had planned to be there for the next day. The difference? No one can see in at the higher level - that's really the only difference. But we really liked that difference. Besides the extra floor stair climb every time, which wasn't a deal for us. But it might be for some folks. The main building is quiet. The rooms are impeccable, as are the grounds. Every day cleaning the pools, scrubbing the outdoor jacuzzis, constant attention to the flora. The beaches in Cabo are remarcably free of litter as well. We didn't have any of the old tile "problems" we've read about here. And even if they were older tiles, honestly who cares? They were immaculate, and we did have housecleaning 3x per day. We had no issues with the TV, there are some movie channels, there are no commercials, and there are ample English channels for vacations. We really don't care about TV on vacation, though. Loved the limited number of guests, and got to say hi to several of them many times, especially at breakfast. Very friendly group here. No activities on site, except hot tubs. I'm a swimmer, and the main pool is approx 25 meters on a diagonal, which was perfect in the mornings. There is a "library," filled with books that guests have left. We contributed to that - great idea. Free laundry service with the all-inclusive - wow. And they did a beautiful job. The boutique is ridiculously expensive. Sunscreen - $36 for a regular sized bottle of Australian Gold. The other sister hotel besides Dreams is Secrets down the beach. The only thing they exchange is meals, and you have to book ahead with the Zoetry concierge 24 hours ahead. Can't even use the pool. Their beach is clothing optional. We also heard through the grapevine and from a gentleman trying to switch to Zoetry one night, that couples can and do get approached for polyamorous get-togethers. Just, if you're considering many hotels, as we were, and reading this as a review while you're making a choice, be fore-warned. There's absolutely nothing about it on the Secrets website, nor the Secrets Trip Advisor comments that I saw. One other thing about Zoetry: it really is for adults - kids would be bored unless they loved to go to Dreams for the activities.
FOOD: The food is exquisite - I particularly liked the menus with kcal count, % of vitamins, protein grams. Again, nice touch. A juice menu for your choice of freshly squeezed juice to your order? Really? Yes. I LOVED the papaya pineapple combo. At the beach restaurant, I loved the shrimp ceviche for lunch, and the organic chicken for dinner. For salad, I choose the portobello mushroom stuffed with spinach salad. They also cook amazing steaks. We had room service a couple of times, and it was faster than the restaurants, some days we had done an excursion and it was a nice way to relax. As stated in other reviews, if there's something you want that's not on the menu, just ask. They accomodate with "it is my pleasure."
SPA: One night we did the couples massage on the beach, ok, not our favorite massage. Rafaella gave us the free 20-minute massages in the beginning, she was wonderfully talented, wish I'd requested her for the beach massage. Oscar at the spa desk was so very nice, too.
ACTIVITIES and EXCURSIONS: As to activities, if you are up for a short walk on the beach to Dreams, they have. Dreams also has a ping-pong table, a putting area, beach volleyball 2x day. Dreams also has a professional photographer booth right at the beach entrance, free "sitting," free first photo - not bad at all. They also have a $6.00 shuttle, that goes on the half hour and picks up at the half hour, to Cabo San Lucas. Yes, we tried the city bus one day, windows weren't open, I sweated a lot, I much preferred the shuttle from Dreams.
ACTIVITIES: Loved "Day Sail Cabo" with Captain Bob and his cute terrier Stoli - best ceviche I have ever eaten, and good snorkeling. He knows a lot about the history of Cabo, and pointed out some celebrity digs. We had booked from the States prior to goingie If you go through the concierge at the hotel, for any activity, be prepared to pay a sizeable premium. Also, BJC Sportfishing - about half the price of other fishing gigs. We went fishing for mahi mahi instead of marlin, and we came back with two good-sized mahi and one smaller one, and we saw many of the boats coming back with nothing that day. We had a 26 ft boat to ourselves for $250, 5 hours, of course prices are subject to change. Downside, if you don't speak a little spanish, or at least try, the captains are limited English. I find that if you try to speak, the locals really appreciate it. Big time tip for fishing: We got the fish prepared at Griselda's in the Marina - the captain radioed ahead and there was a man with a cooler meeting up at the boat. He walked us to Griseldas, they fillet the fish, ($1.50 per pound) seal it, freeze it or smoke it (5.00 per pound - we really wished that we'd gotten more of our fish smoked - it is so freaking good that we can't believe it.) We picked it up the day before departure, Zoetry put it in the freezer for us, we put it in the box for sale at Griseldas and checked it at American Airlines. No issues except $40 for the additional "luggage." There was one extra line upon return in Customs, no big deal. We have 15 pounds of fillets and 5 pounds of smoked mahi mahi. One other activity, we went on the Thursday night jazz and art walk in San Jose del Cabo - ok, but many of the roads are under construction, and you're walking on dirt road. Don't wear nice shoes. The one jewelry store in San Jose del Cabo that did't have exactly the same thing as many others, is named Indirizzo (http://www.fireopalsinternational.com)The Sanchez family are unique, multi-generational, really amazing pieces. All the other patrons in the store were return customers. They bargain nicely. Last day, we rented a car (at the desk of Zoetry) for one day and took our own trip to Todos Santos, stopped at Los Cerritos beach on the way back. The car is delivered to the hotel, and you just drop it in the parking lot when you're done. We were really glad that we did that day. Now, things that we didn't expect in Cabo - the silver is WAY expensive. We got a silver and red coral ring in Todos Santos - he was asking $120, we got it for $50, and compared to eBay this was a reasonable price. The other thing about silver there - look not only for .925 mark, also look for the MEX or "Mexico" stamp - there are forgeries galore. I had also found a lovely and large oyster shell on the beach - highly opalescent, and we got it made into a silver and gold pendant downtown Cabo at a place called Marquina Jewelers downtown Cabo San Lucas, and it turned out beautifully, though I wish that I had tried to get a better price.
We will be back to Cabo, we will stay at Zoetry, and happy travels!
Main building, level 200.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.