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“Second Trip Here, and a Wedding!”

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Hacienda Encantada Resort & Residences
Ranked #20 of 71 Hotels in Cabo San Lucas
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 9, 2014

We stayed at the Hacienda Encantada from December 16th through 28th this year, and had our wedding on Saturday the 21st.

The first week was amazing. It's the same week we were there last year - *before* it gets busy for the holidays. It was peaceful and wonderful when we arrived. I had messed up and arrived one day before I had told Edith, the wedding planner, that we would be checking in. Karla at the front desk was surprised to see us a day early, but our room was ready for us anyway and she graciously checked us in. Manuel the bellman even went to the shop to grab sodas, beers, and waters because the fridge wasn't stocked yet. Then, since we'd gotten there late thanks to American Airlines once again screwing us up, we were starving and we were delighted to see the new taco bar that's been added since last year (near the firepit and tequila bar). The tacos are AMAZING! You can choose from chicken, al pastor, beef, Spanish sausage, and other options, with corn or flour tortillas, and they're made to order. Delicious!

On the 17th through the 20th, our friends and family arrived, and they all were amazed by how beautiful the resort is. We were able to have group dinners at the restaurant without making reservations, and while I'd describe the service as kind of Mediterranean in its pace (i.e., not American-snappy-fast), it was fine and they were very attentive. During the day we were always able to get loungers by the lower pool / the cliffs overlooking the sea, and our friends could sit next to us or wherever they wanted. Those who love to hang out in the pool and drink were able to do that all day, and those who wanted to do activities and excursions set those up for themselves and went and had a blast. The free shuttle is still a great way to get into town to do some sightseeing or visit the busy beach area, but it's great to get back to the peace and quiet of the Hacienda.

Our wedding was unbelievable and definitely exceeded my expectations. Edith is SUPER nice and great to work with, and she got every detail right. The planning process was very easy and low-stress because they have preferred vendors they work with, and you don't have to go through the hassle of vetting them out. The musicians, florist (Cabo Floral Studios), DJ, bartenders and waitstaff, as well as Edith's assistants Jessie and Cindy, executed the ceremony and reception flawlessly. For the ceremony, we had the beach area above the cliffs, and it was breathtakingly beautiful - just before sunset. Then we moved up to the terrace for cocktails, and finally up to the very top level for the reception. I would recommend this place to anyone for a destination wedding.

The second week got a little hectic, and I do see where some of the latest negative reviews are coming from. With the hotel packed to capacity for the holidays, service did get slower. The thing that bugged us the most was that they put a huge extended family with NINE KIDS in the two or three rooms right next to the honeymoon suite. The kids were yelling and screaming the entire time. Then they'd come down to the lower pool with huge pool floats and take over that area. Then one night at dinner, we admittedly didn't make a reservation, but the only place they could seat us was right next to the table of nine kids! At that point we left and went to the taco bar, then we figured we'd come back up to the restaurant and have dessert. We sat at the bar and ordered some tequila and carrot cake, but they *never brought it.* So we left and were frustrated.

A word about the food - there are a LOT of complaints about it in these reviews. I don't know why, it's actually pretty good, and it's improved since last year. The steaks are cooked better (last year you couldn't seem to get rare, just well-done). And just overall it seems to have been spruced up. And the sushi bar and taco bar are GREAT additions. If you're not doing the all-inclusive the prices seem pretty crazy-high to me, but the value of the AI plan is fabulous in my opinion. Our guests liked the food, and we got a lot of compliments on the wedding dinner (we chose to do a buffet because we didn't feel like finding out what everyone wanted for an entrée, but you can do sit-down dinner too, and it's from a special banquet menu).

Bottom line, I would still absolutely recommend this resort, and DEFINITELY for a wedding; however, not during the peak holiday weeks. Just before the holidays is fine, but it's just too crazy around Christmas / New Year's, and the guests get more obnoxious as lots of families show up. Ok, I'm sure our guests were kind of obnoxious too, especially at night by the firepit. I apologize to anyone we annoyed.

So, 5 stars for the wedding and the week leading up to it, 3 stars for the second week, averages out to a 4-star review. Our guests could not stop raving about the place and what a wonderful relaxing time they had. We wish we could do it again! A special thank you to Edith and her assistants who took it over the top!

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Cookie1975
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,433 - 2,439 of 3,242 reviews

Reviewed January 8, 2014

We just returned from a week vacation over the holidays. This is a beautiful resort but the service is atrocious. We averaged 3 hours for all restaurant meals (one took almost 4!!), and we were often were served the incorrect food and had to remind our wait staff several times what our drink orders were. I have never experienced service this poor before in all my travels. The bottom pool staff is the best, and when I say the best, I mean they only averaged 30 minutes to get our drinks to us. We waited over 2 hours for lunch most days. The prices are outrageous, so do the all inclusive if you plan to eat on site much (which I don't recommend). The staff was not apologetic to us, in fact there were times when I felt they were "bothered" by us reminding them that we had an order out there. At the morning buffet, wild birds are constantly eating the food off the serving spoons and landing over it (I don't even want to think of what is falling in the food below!). What this resort needs is a manager who will train the staff properly on customer service and a more efficent system for the wait staff to place orders at the pools and restaurants. The front desk does not know what the concierge is doing and vice versa. If you make any arrangements with either group, it will behove you to confirm it on your own, as we had 2 problems with reservations we were told were made, but were not. Terrible experience overall because of the staff!

Room Tip: We were overlooking the ocean and infinity pools. Rooms were very quite, but we did need to call ho...
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  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with family
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3  Thank lisa c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HaciendaEncantada, Guest Relations Manager at Hacienda Encantada Resort & Residences, responded to this reviewResponded January 11, 2014

We are so sorry that after all those years this time you had a bad experience. We are sure it's going to be completely different in your next visit, if you have us a second chance, regards!!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 7, 2014

BEWARE!!!!

We just returned from this resort, 2 adults, 2 kids ages 10 & 12. A gorgeous place "on a beautiful golden beach" as it was advertised is FALSE. The activities for kids are basically non-existent, there are only a few for adults. Most of the programs are are not run because they schedule them way too early in the morning when everybody is still sleeping or having breakfast ...

Pros:
-the view
-nice buildings & landscaping
-heated pool
-whale watching from THE restaurant

Cons:
-no customer service, receptionists just do not care
-most of the hotel rooms are time share owned, dual identity is really confusing for everybody!
-everything is a-la-cart, need to order from the same menu over and over again. After 3 days we wished to eat some place else, outside of this resort ... Buffet only in the morning. No pancakes, no smoothies ...
-waiters expect tips from ALL INCLUSIVE customers, too
-no kids club, very minimal adult activity
-no evening entertainment either
-no "golden" beach anywhere close - just ginormous rocks
-no reliable internet connection ... not in the lobby, not in the room
-the main pool got brown by one morning, then it was drained, and then they pumped clean water back at night right next to our room until 1:30 AM!!! It was loud, horrendous, and did not stop after we complained at 12:30 AM ...

We called Bookit.com (our travel agent) the following morning to place us in a different resort, but after being on the phone for 3 hours, NOTHING happened. The manager was in a meeting for hours on end, we could not get a hold of him ... We paid a lot for this vacation and met so many careless people at a resort. Very wierd.

Room Tip: Ask for rooms on higher floors for best view of the Arch & Sea of Cortez!
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  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Aggie V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HaciendaEncantada, Guest Relations Manager at Hacienda Encantada Resort & Residences, responded to this reviewResponded January 11, 2014

It's so bad reading your comment, we are very sorry your stay with us was that bad.... we hope we can do something to fix the mistake

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Reviewed January 3, 2014

I'm actually on the resort now. Gorgeous property but too many chinks in the armor. I've been in the hospitality business and in two words the biggest issues with this hotels staff and service are training and accountability. Nobody seems to understand that ALL of the guests needs have to be met. The staff at this resort, while generally well intentioned and with more than a few bright stars, really pick and choose what they want to be helpful with. It's a bad sign when you don't have enough faith in the concierge/front desk to make any suggestions/arrangements for you because you know the only dependable way to do it will be to do it yourself. The most consistent service came from the lower pool staff (and perhaps because I tip generously) and cart drivers. But do not expect anyone to go the extra mile here. We actually changed rooms and I had to carry half my luggage with bellman in tow with the other half. Food at the restaurants is soulless and uninspired. I wouldn't say anything was inedible (except my fiances tortilla soup the first night) but that they would expect anyone to come here for the dining experience is absurd at best. Shame because the ambiance and views from the upper restaurants are impressive. They need to hire a food and beverage director from the US or Europe if they want to attract a higher end clientele. And while I wouldn't go as far as to say the guests at the hotel are low rent it's cruise ship/time share city and it's not a great look. But hey, maybe they've just decided to be middle of the road and leave the 5 star experience to Palmilla and Esperanza. Which again is a shame because the grounds are GORGEOUS. Gym and spa are very sad. My theory is the actual facilities are part of phase 3 and these current ones temporary. The changing area at the spa is literally the size of a hotel bathroom and the outside massage area is right next to a bar and staircase. Could not be less private or relaxing. Treatments themselves were good but marred by the facility size. The gym is teeny and smells like bug spray. Same with the resort market small and smelling of insect repellant. And I'm not sure who merchandised the apparel and accessories but you would find better stuff at a yard sale. Here's the bottom line: the owners of this property are rich (which I heard from one of the staff) but are waiting to see "what happens". I can only assume that means if they sell enough time shares to justify completing the development and spending the money required to bring it up to the level of other nearby resorts (ie Fiesta Americana, sorry will never be a Palmilla or Las Ventanas). My advice to the owners if you're reading this is SPEND THE MONEY NOW. Take your swing for the fences. You had a brilliant vision for this property. At night one of the most beautiful I've ever seen. If the food and service here were truly 5 star (or even truly 4 star) I would have done the time share presentation. There are people in Southern California desperate for more affordable alternatives to the overpriced 5 star resorts in Cabo. I would have even overlooked the deficiencies in overall service (the gold standard being Four Seasons where you have anything you need anytime of day with a phone call vs. the Encantada get what you want by asking many times and then maybe you'll get it because we really don't care THAT much) had just the food been excellent (and come on guys this is fixable I know as there's great product in Cabo). But after one sad shrimp cocktail or overcooked tuna steak or flavor less BLT or inedible Mexican tortilla soup (how'd you miss that one) the notion of spending hard earned cash on a timeshare to come back to that is pretty unappetizing. So please get your crap together, train your staff to REALLY care about the guests (not just fake it which pretty much all of them are doing probably because YOU don't care) and fire your F&B person TODAY and spend some real money on getting your food right. And I mean REALLY right. No more bad grapefruit juice from concentrate, frozen meat products and bread from the convenience store down the street. CARE about the food you're serving your guests even if you think the majority of your guests don't know the difference. It's painfully obvious your staff WANTS this place to be great. To take pride in working on this beautiful property. But as it stands your waiter has to lie to the guest when he says the tortilla soup is the best he's ever had when I've tasted better out of a cheap can. Don't force your staff to lie and make us to be the fools. I know you care more than this I see it all over the grounds. But please don't "wait to see what happens". People are spending hard earned cash to come here and I'm venturing more than 80% of the positive reviews on TA are from time share owners attempting to make this place seem way better than it actually is either to make themselves feel better for having bought or to try and fool people into staying here. BUT you're not fooling anyone trust me. At least not anyone you'd really want to have purchasing property here. I'm giving 3 stars for promise and your overall well intentioned staff (albeit grossly under trained in the art of fine service)

  • Stayed: December 2013
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11  Thank Stubb01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 2, 2014

We went on a family holiday for the Christmas week. Admittedly we booked in late October and general availability in Cabo was spotty. We NEVER book all-inclusive hotels and now I know why. This was a horrible experience. The management of this hotel has unbelievably taken what should be a five star location but run the hotel like a cheap package holiday destination.If you have never traveled, wear lots of polyester cheap clothes, have your body covered in tattoos, are happy eating copious amounts of the slop they pass off as food, expect no service, want lots of cheap booze so that you can behave like sophomores on sprig break, like noisy low class fellow guests, a concierge that couldn't book an outside activity without getting into an argument with the guest after 10-12 phones calls and still get it WRONG, and are happy to be hustled and pressured into signing up for a Residents Club presentation within 15 minutes of your arrival after having been told that your room wouldn't be ready for three hours and left to fend for yourself, then this is the place for you!

If, on the other hand, you have more than just taste in your mouth RUN AWAY-DO NOT GO HERE IT IS A PILE OF STINKING BROWN STUFF!

Room Tip: Avoid this place like the plague - a tent on the beach is better than a minute at this dump!
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  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with family
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12  Thank FMarc54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HaciendaEncantada, Guest Relations Manager at Hacienda Encantada Resort & Residences, responded to this reviewResponded January 9, 2014

We are sorry that your experience with us wasn't as good as we expected. We always try to do our best to make guests feel the best way but certainly we didn't make it this time. We are really sorry

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 2, 2014

We recently stayed at the Hacienda Encantada Resort and Spa for 7 days with another couple. It was a wonderful time! The couple we travel with did an interval time share exchange and we couldn't be more than pleased with the property and staff. We stayed in a 2200 sq ft 2 bedroom/3 bath villa. The rooms were spacious and clean with a ful kitchen and large living area. From our balconies we could whale watch and definitely saw several humpback whales during our visit. The view of Lands End and the Sea of Cortez is breathtaking! We were luck enough to be on the top floor which I think also aided in the fantastic view.
The property is going to be expanding over time and from the plan it looks like it will be fantastic. I cannot say enough about the staff. Always friendly, always helpful...and always smiling!
The property is situated on hills, but the resort offers golf cart service to and from wherever you need to go on the property. We had our own transportation for site seeing in town, but there is a shuttle service to the sister property located at the marina (scheduled every two hours so be sure to check with the concierge)
Really cannot say enough about the property itself...beautiful rooms, several restuarants on site (including sushi bar, taco bars by the pools), infitinity pool overlooking the Sea of Cortez with beautiful sunsets.
I would go back in a heartbeat!!

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank UsaTheWanderer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 1, 2014

This was our third trip back, that may tell the story right there. It is removed from the hustle and bustle of the tourist area. A truly quiet and Relaxing vacation once we finally got checked in a just past 6pm. Our rooms weren't ready at 2:30 so we went to lunch at the pool. At 4 still not ready so we went to Walmart to get supplies for the room. At 6 our room still not ready but they finally gave us another room. We traveled with our daughters (23 &25) they are good at adjustments, for the week before Christmas. The food was very good, the taco and Tequila bar was excellent. The pool bar staff is just wonderful and the food was always hot when served The first 7 Days on an interval exchange we weren't on the all-inclusive, but they treated us great, we went to all the restaurants there were delicious choices. The last 3 days, we moved rooms (bit of a Bother, the description is the same but a different configuration) surprised we couldn't stay in the same room, we did the all inclusive. Same great service and just a friendly as can be. Next year, probably Yes even with the minor issues of rooms.

Room Tip: The first phase is for "owners only" but the rooms are wonderful in Phase 2.
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  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Jeanne S
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 Luxury Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#16 On the Beach Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#22 Romantic Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
#24 Family Hotel in Cabo San Lucas
Price Range: $148 - $1,033 (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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