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“Best Resort in Cabo”

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Hacienda Encantada Resort & Residences
Ranked #20 of 71 Hotels in Cabo San Lucas
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 31, 2011

On a recent four week trip to the United States, we decided to head down to Cabo San Lucas for a week. I chose Hacienda Encantada because of how it looked on their web site and because the room rates seemed quite reasonable.

We had an 'all-inclusive' package which meant all our food and drinks were included in the price of the room, with the exclusion of gratuity.

We were delighted by the friendliness of the staff and the service offered. The staff bent over backwards to help us and our fellow guests and nothing was too much trouble. The food was fresh and delicious and the swim-up bars were a brilliant way to spend the day.

The only drawback is that like most places in the area, they try to get you to sign up for a time-share seminar, where you get a high pressure sales pitch. To their credit, once we explained that we were not interested in time-share, they left us alone and didn't pester us with this again.

Hacienda Encantada is the perfect place to spend a week or two in Cabo and I can't wait to go back.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Swatson888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 31, 2011

We stayed as guests of an owner. Prior to arrival, we requested two things through GBS; a child seat in the private van we paid for and a room in phase 1 of the resort.

Airport Arrival: Upon arrival to the airport and after making it through customs and the barrage of vendors, we were easily able to identify the transcabo driver. They were very nice, but after I had asked where the child seat was, the driver indicated that he had no notification that a child seat was needed. We decided to move on anyway and head for Hacienda Encantada.

Hotel Arrival: Upon arrival to the hotel and while checking in, one of the first questions that we were asked is if we were owners. Then, we were informed that they hadn't received the request from GBS to stay in phase 1. So, they tried to accommodate us by putting us on the top floor of phase 2. I began to wonder if the first question about being an owner had anything to do with being in phase 2 vs. phase 1. We accepted and just kept moving forward. Initial presentation of the facility and the rooms is one of wonderment. This is a very beautiful facility and the rooms were put together very nicely with all of the amenities you could need on a family trip. Also, all of the personnel that were involved in checking us in, movement of bags, and getting us to our room were super nice and very helpful.

Day 1 - Day 3: After getting to our room and getting everything sorted out, the fun really started (insert sarcasm). Since this time of year is a little hotter in Cabo, we began to notice that the AC wasn't working so well in the first room of the suite. We called maintenance to check it out, but the "knowledgeable" AC maintenance folks had already left. So, they sent someone anyway. That person didn't know anymore about AC than we did and we just dealt with it. So, day 2 started and we called again. A few AC maintenance people came by throughout the day and tried to fix it, but didn't have any luck. After they left after the second day they assured us that the situation is resolved and that it would take a few hours to cool down. Wrong again! So, we dealt with it again for another night. Day 3 starts and I've had about enough. I call again and then they finally send someone that knows what they are doing and it turns out that the thermostat was in some sort of maintenance mode and would only run for short periods of time. The 5 or 6 people that had visited us prior to this were unable to resolve this. So, we then were reassured once again that the issue would be fixed. After an hour or two, it seemed to be corrected.

Then, all of a sudden, all electricity in the room would just shut down for no apparent reason even though there were people up and moving in various parts of the suite. This happened several times. Of course, maintenance came and explained to us that the electricity would shut off if various conditions were met. However, in this case, those conditions weren't met and as soon as the maintenance team arrived, it behaved normally. Either way, we had enough. We went to the front desk and requested a room change. They explained that they have 3 possibles in phase 2 and 1 possible in phase 1. I told them I wanted phase 1 with no other choice considering all the time we had spent being guinea pigs working out the bugs in the newly built phase 2. After some time, they agreed to open up a suite in phase 1 and we began to move. As usual, the folks helping us move were wonderful and very accommodating.

After we moved, we realized we had left our pool towels in the old room. So, we tried to acquire some new pool towels. This is where we learned a valuable lesson in that the pool towels are "worth their weight in gold" at HE. After providing the same story to several levels of personnel at the hotel and then having all of the same personnel tell us that the maid service indicated that the pool towels were not in the old room, which was an outright lie, we still didn't have any towels. So, then the 5th or so person I spoke with said that they could offer us new towels, but it would be $25 per towel and I denied acceptance of this fee and demanded I speak with the manager. After about 2 hours, the manager finally came by and reluctantly gave us new towel cards. This evolution lasted about 5 or so hours and even in the end, I could tell the manager didn't want to give out the new towel cards. So, if you go to HE and get pool towel cards or pool towels, GUARD THEM WITH YOUR LIFE!

One other item I noticed after the move...the TV programming available in phase 2 was different than phase 1 for some reason. Phase 2 didn't have any english speaking channels and was missing quite a few channels in comparison to phase 1. I wouldn't normally care as we weren't there to watch TV, but from time to time when you have a small child that wants to watch a little TV, it's a "nice to have" item. Either way, it's another ding on the credibility of the facility.

Day 4 - Day 7: The fun wasn't quite over. Two people in my family had gotten some bad fish on "Italian Night." This resulted in a fairly rough 24-36 hours for those two. Additionally, since we weren't owners, we agreed to the 90 minute timeshare presentation. This ended up being 2.5+ hours and was extremely exhausting. No discount that you can think of is worth this amount of time and exhausting discussions when you are on vacation. I mean, how many times do you have to say NO!

Dining Summary: The food is very good at HE. El Patio, Las Marias, and La Trajinera are all good restaurants for what they deliver. The only thing I have to say here is that if you are there for more than 3-4 days, some of us grew tired of what was available and we should have planned for more dinner outings while we were there. However, while noting the cost of how much we did eat at the resort, it did appear that the cost of the food we spent did cover the all inclusive rates we paid.

Service Summary: The best way I can describe this is by splitting the service personnel into groups. All of the personnel that we dealt with on day to day tasks were simply fabulous considering the amount of hours these folks work. Fernando, Javier, Manuel, Nancy, Esme, and many others were so great to work with. My son loved interacting with Fernando. Now, onto the upper level service personnel. This group needs some serious help in customer service. These folks have ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA of what customer service is about.

Overall Summary: Simply put, there were too many negative impacting events for me to ever consider returning to this facility. I really hate to say this considering the beauty of the facility and how great many of the personnel were, but I felt an honest opinion was in order.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank LonestarZ06
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 30, 2011

First of all, this is NOT a hotel. It is a timeshare. There is a HUGE
difference. The implication of this is that unless you own or are buying a
timeshare here you are a second class citizen at best who will be harassed
throughout your stay to buy one. Second, NEVER pay retail if you do come as a
hotel guest. Go to one of the major online luxury travel auction sites---can't say which one here due to Tripadvisor regulations--- They have two listings on there every
day. The base price is $49/day and you bid above that. NEVER bid more than
$20/day. If you lose, it’s no problem as they have a daily auction. Try
tomorrow. In short, you should pay $350-$500/week max. for this place, not the
$1,200-$2,000/week “specials” they offer directly through the resort. Also, DO
NOT do the all-inclusive at $85 per person per day. RIP OFF! The food is average
at best and the drinks are weak. Buy yours at Walmart – a 5 min cab ride away.
You can stock up on everything for a week at the price of what they charge for
one day of all inclusive.

IF you decide to go here realize it is a very poor option given all the many
other places in CABO. It is far from town and isolated. There is no beach. You
cannot swim in the ocean here. It is on a rocky cliff and the sand, what little
there is, is extremely course. They force you to valet your car so you have to
tip coming and going each time. They use NOISY motorized golf carts to get you
around the resort—the hills are too steep, distances long and it’s usually too
hot to walk. You cannot just “pop” up to the lobby or get your car. Instead, you
have to wait—sometimes long times—to get a LOUD cart with gas fumes spewing from
it..

As for your room, BEWARE! If you are not an owner you will be put in Phase 2.
Phase 1 is directly on the cliff with the nice views they advertise. Phase 2,
however, is behind it with a pool, bars, activities areas, etc. in between. Most
of the rooms have views of those amenities and/or the back/roof tops of Phase 1.
You will NOT be allowed to switch rooms to Phase one if you do not like your
view of the back of a pool towel stand or bar……..or if you do not like your
entire evening stolen from you by the LOUD blaring music they play in the common
areas right in front of your windows/balcony each and every night. Even after
that stops there are plenty of drunk people partying out there by the pool and
fire pit until well past midnight screaming and laughing. Do not think closing
your door helps---it does not. Voices can be heard clearly and the reverberation
form the music will shake the items on your dining table near the widows. DO NOT
think the solution is to complain and/or ask to be moved to a quiet room. The
only rooms that are not affected are those in Phase 1. Even if the entire Phase
one is EMPTY, they WILL NOT move you unless you are an owner. They will lie
about how much longer the music will play and they will refuse to ask the
screaming masses to settle down.

As for this being a timeshare disguised as a resort, know that the timeshare
people are right there in the front lobby. They will accost and harass you when
you check in and each time you come and go. While waiting for your car they will
get in your face and demand to know when you are going to buy. I finally had to
tell one to back off. I was told, “I am only doing my job.” His job is to harass
people daily and get in their face?!?! Oh, and you will get early morning phone
calls from them as well…..what a way to start the day!

Because this is a timeshare, you will have lots of families here with LOTS of
kids. Do not think that the kids will be in the children’s rec area and/or
center pool exclusively. They are everywhere at all hours. The main pools on the
cliffs in front of Phase 1, the “adult” pools will be filled with them and all
the noise they bring with them. There’s nothing like a romantic sunset on the
cliff from an infinity edge pool than having toddlers throwing fits, teenagers
fighting and parents screaming at them all…..daily!

If you forgo the all-inclusive plan, on paying $10 per well drink and up to $30
for a plate of average enchiladas. NOT worth it!

If you do not like cigarette smoke, too bad. People smoke around the pool, at
the pool bars/restaurants and on their balconies. The balconies are open to the
ones next door so you will get all that second hand smoke……..and it will come
into your place if the door is open.

For a no kinds/no smoking nice experience do your research----there are places
here that offer that.

On a positive note, the rooms are large, clean and well decorated………but you can
find this anywhere in Cabo. Yes, the setting is beautiful and the grounds
impressive, but once more, this is a dime a dozen here. The line staff is
gracious………..but once more, this is available nearly everywhere in Cabo.

In short, if you like being ripped off, being treated like a second class
citizen, shun any sense of peace and quiet and overpriced average food and weak
drinks then by all means come here……….but if you must at least get a good deal
on the place as I mentioned above or you will feel even worse. Seriously, if you
want action/beach, stay close in town and if you want quiet and amazing views,
stay at a hotel property in the corridor, not a timeshare. If you are thinking
of trading and/or owning to stay here look into other options. Do not waste
your time on what looks nice in the photos but in reality is merely an
overpriced, low quality second class timeshare churning mill.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8  Thank jcrossSanFrancisco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2011

First let me say that I truly love Los Cabos and this resort helped me fall even more in love with it!

The entrance to the resort is absolutely gorgeous including the drive up to the lobby. The security is tight and make you feel extremely safe at all times! The valet service/cart operators are VERY friendly and are always available to assist you in any way. They are gems!

The check -in/concierge area is truly beautiful and the furniture is just incredible! Upon check-in, we were taken care of by a very sweet young woman (can't remember her name, blonde and very pretty) and she made every single charge ($7 daily for maid service and "behind the scene" workers and $11 daily for Interval vacationers) known. I knew EXACTLY what my bill was going to be like at the end of the trip and it was a wonderful experience. Also, Interval gave a $100 credit to my bill. Not sure why but I DEFINITELY did NOT complain! So many others upon check-out did not have such an agreeable experience which was unfortunate.

The room was just stunning!!! We stayed in a one bedroom villa with two bathrooms, dining area, kitchen, living room and GORGEOUS king size bedroom. Pictures really don't do it justice at all! The patio was ENORMOUS and made for some very relaxing evenings.

The pools and grounds are beautiful and the stunning view of the waves crashing on the rocks will forever be etched in our minds.

We took part in the all-inclusive option for 3 days as we spent much of the other days on excursions which were awesome thanks to the time share pitch discount. The food and drinks were GREAT! We went zip lining, jet skiing, para sailing (INCREDIBLE), and a sunset cruise for about $200 (definitely a $500 approximate value). It was well worth it for us though it was NOT 90 minutes. Although we did not purchase, we met an incredible asset to the hotel, Jim. He was extremely enlightening and very impressive. I definitely wish we were financially ready to make the purchase but am very confident that we make the right decision.

The next morning, we were able to meet the owner and his grandfather (so sweet) and he very kindly said "this is your home". It made us feel so welcomed and eager to return.

I would DEFINITELY return again but think I would with family. It's not necessarily a "family oriented" resort nor does it boast to be. It doesn't have many guests with small children but I would love to return with my cousins and nephews and niece. There's a small water works play area for kids that I thought was cute. I know we would have a BLAST together! :)

Over the next 40 months, there's a lot of additions they plan to make including a chapel, another 70 rental properties and whale watching bridges. It's going to be AMAZING!

Hernan is AWESOME and the infinity pool workers Manuel (awesome bar tender), Karla and Esmeralda were so wonderful! I truly recommend this hotel and hope to return soon! :)

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank CurlyDee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 18, 2011

We just returned from the Hacienda Encantada in Cabo and could not be happier. Our stay was for one week and the resort was beautiful as was the weather. The service is prompt and every effort was made to make our group of seven very comfortable. This is a resort that I refert to as my "Eden". We cannot wait until vacation time next year to go back. I recomend the first phase bldg, fouth floor end unit for spectacular views and sea breezes. We were very impressed with the staff especially the resort manager Nahim Yitanti Ortega. He was very nice and runs a wonderful place....Bob and Diane

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank bobfan1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 10, 2011

We piggy-backed on our friend's timeshare trip this year along with 2 other couples, so we brought our own party with us. Very glad that we had a fun group as there was nothing happening at this resort other than the sheer beauty of the place...and that is considerable. The rooms are very nice with small kitchens, sitting area, good sized bathrooms, and a comfy bed. The views vary, of course, and ours opened onto one of the courtyards. Our patio had a partial ocean view with a little neck strain.
The humidity was pretty brutal during our trip with some evenings over 80% and most days in the 70's. Temps were 85-90, so I'm thinking July was a bad month for coming this far South. AC in the rooms and the ceiling fan worked great. The rooms were set up with auto shutoffs though so if there was no movement, the fans and lights turn off. I didn't care too much for that.
The hotel is built on a hill so it's a pretty good workout walking anywhere. The staff are happy to drive you around on golf carts, but I found it a bit of a pain to have to call for a ride somewhere. We usually just mountain-goated it up the hill. The staff was friendly over-all. No complaints. Restaurants were not anything special. We didn't go all-inclusive as it seemed $80/day was too steep. Drinks and food were pretty expensive, but you tend to expect that. There is a fridge in the room and we made a run to Wal-mart. Taxis are easy to get for rides anywhere and you can wheel and deal with them on the $$. There is a shuttle to the sister hotel down on the water, but the shuttle was $5/person and ends at 8PM. The one time we took it was the last as the air didn't work in the shuttle and I thought my wife was going to kill the driver. It's a bit of a pain to have to take a taxi or any ride into town, but there is zero nightlife at Hacienda Encantada. Perhaps when all the phases are complete, then there will be sufficient numbers of people to expand. The place is certainly set up to do anything they want. The bars are beautiful and the courtyards large. They did have some Mexican dancing, but it was pretty hokey to me.
The pools were really nice....Infinity pool is beautiful with a swim up bar. There isn't any beach access as the shoreline is rocky. The waves were crazy and you'd have to be even crazier to try to get into the ocean there. It's fun and relaxing to look at though. There are a couple of jacuzzis and kiddie pools. I didn't see too many kids, but there is also a kid's water park area. It looked like a small splash zone, but I didn't pay too much attention.
We did the timeshare presentation. They offered us pretty good incentives so we took the couple hours to eat breakfast and listen to the pitch. Pretty easy to say no. We got 4 free booze cruises along with some other discount stuff.
There is free wifi in the rooms, but it's pretty slow. Better than nothing. My wife got a spa treatment and wasn't too impressed. The gal who did her facial didn't speak any English at all, so she couldn't talk to her about anything. My wife said that the facial ended up being more of a massage, which is not what she wanted.
Overall, I'm thinking it would be worth another trip, but I'd wait 5 years until Phase 3 is done. We like more of a party though. If you're looking for quiet, then maybe you'd like it the way it is. Pass on July though as it was too hot and humid.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank woonyboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 7, 2011

We are still here for a few more days on our vacation and are very glad we decided to stay at the Hacienda Encantada. I traded this through Interval International and ended up with a large 1BR 2BA residence in Phase 2 with an ocean view.
The CONS: There is no beach access. The water is too rough and if you walk on the beach, there are many rocks around that do not make it easily accesible to lay out and get in the water. Also, there is no nightlife here unless you bring it. Everything closes early!

The PROS: The pools and poolside bars are great! The infinity pool gives you ocean views and is very relaxing. The staff is wonderful. They could not be any nicer. I have traveled all over the world to many resorts and really feel that the staff here is top notch! The restaurants here are okay. There is really nothing special about the food. The price and quality is what you would expect. The resort thus far has not been very crowded which is great if you are trying to relax. There is no need to arrive at the pool hours before you want to be there so that you can get a chair. The activities director (Fernand) is very friendly and I must admit, I am a bit envious of his job. The rooms are very spacious and housekeeping does all of our dishes in addition to the normal upkeep.

This has been our first time to Cabo and so far we have had a wonderful experience! I definitely would like to come back and would try and stay here!

On a side note, the timeshare stuff is a bit pushy when you arrive. It's no worse than any other place. When they tell you that it takes 90 minutes of your time, there is a lot of truth to that. I am an owener of 2 other resorts. The financial benefits of doing their presentation here was great. We got about a 50% discount or more on activities outside the resort (ziplining, scuba, dinner cruise, etc).

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank mikeshamokin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hacienda Encantada Resort & Residences

Address: Carretera Transpeninsular km 7.3, Cabo San Lucas 23410, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Baja California > Baja California Sur > Los Cabos > Cabo San Lucas
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#10 Top resorts Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#13 Spa Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#16 On the Beach Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#16 Luxury Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#22 Romantic Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#23 Family Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
Price Range: $146 - $1,027 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Hacienda Encantada Resort & Residences 4.5*
Number of rooms: 222
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Unique and breathtakingly beautiful, this spectacular contemporary hacienda style luxury all-inclusive resort located on the tourist corridor in Cabo San Lucas offers magnificent panoramic views to the Sea of Cortes, romantic settings, distinctive dining, spacious and luxurious accommodations, and a variety of venues for special events. Your will be amazed of the bright, terracotta colored, Mexican hacienda style buildings that are beautifully decorated with handmade Talavera tile murals, vases, classical sculptures, Spanish colonial fountains, contemporary art for contrast, and upscale traditional Mexican furnishing, driving them to experience an authentic Mexican ambiance throughout their stay. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hacienda Encantada Resort And Spa
Hacienda Encantada Hotel Cabo San Lucas
Hacienda Encantada Resort & Residences Cabo San Lucas, Los Cabos

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