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“Beautiful hotel, avoid sharks...”

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Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort
Ranked #4 of 43 Hotels in San Jose del Cabo
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 20, 2004

Just returned from 6 days at Los Cabos. I appreciated the tips I read in these reviews, but I found that some were not specific enough. Some people mentioned renting cars for less than $20/day. What I didn't realize was you must know whether your auto insurance covers you there. There are 6 or 8 little booths you see right after you collect your luggage at the airport, and they'll all vie for your business. We went from one to the next and the lowest they eventually got to was $125 for a small 4-door for 6 days. However if you need to add full or partial insurance coverage, it jumps up to around $280. Huge difference! Not knowing whether our ins. would cover us, we opted for the partial and got it for $211 at Payless.
We ignored all the "sharks" waiting on the other side of the frosted glass exit doors and caught our shuttle over to the car rental place. We were met by a very pleasant, engaging man who we didn't realize until a ways into the conversation was a time-share salesman. He offered us $100 off of the car rental cost (VERY tempting!), 2 tickets (supposedly worth $35 ea.) for a 4 hr. snorkeling cruise, 2 tickets for a glass-bottom boat trip out to Lover's Beach, a bottle of Kahlua & one of tequila. (I ended up trading in mine for a cheap blanket and my husband said the tequila was yucky so he poured it out.) We needed only to pay $35 to him up front and agree to a 45 min. breakfast buffet and a 45 min. presentation. We thought it sounded painless enough, and I had read some reviews here about people sitting through the things to earn freebies. We went for it.
Here's my suggestion: Ask up front whose time-share company they're representing. Ask if it's Mayan Palace. If it is, don't go! (I was later told by a local that they refer to them as "Mafian Palace". I can see why.) The breakfast was okay, but definitely NOT worth suffering through the event for. They ask some initial questions and determine whether you've had a time-share before. If you haven't they refer to you as a "non-owner" and they admit that they're hesitant to continue the presentation, as non-owners tend not to be familiar with how it all works and are less likely to buy. They asked if we were likely to buy and I said, "Probably not", but my husband said we were willing to listen. (In hindsight we should have been brutally honest and admitted we were only there for the freebies and I think they would've let us go w/out tormenting us for over 3 1/2 hrs.) Yes, the 90 minutes more than doubled and you can't hurry them along. ("How much does it cost?" "I'll get to that...") After starting at $60,000 for a 100 yr. ownership (that you can will to your children) and working down to a $6,500 buy-someone's-trade-in for a studio apt. sized room, we still wouldn't buy. They get angry and demand to know why you won't. Then they say a lot of angry sounding words to each other in Spanish and usher you out, but instead of giving you the gifts, they hand you over to yet another person who says you can't go get your gifts until she completes a form rating how the presentation went. She also sounds ticked off ("Who let you through as non-owners?"), but insists she must show us one more option before she'll let us go. She was Canadian and spoke in a manner which was much more up front-sounding and she was quick to get to the bottom line. Well, by the time she began to describe a 3 yr. agreement for $1,500 that gets you 6 weeks at a variety of resorts + a cruise to Alaska for only $400 a person + some other stuff I've forgotten, she's beginning to sound like your best friend and we, well...we gave in and went for it. I'm still not sure if it's a legitimate company. All I have (besides my contract) is a Puerto Vallarta address, an 800 ph. number and a web address. I haven't attempted to look it up yet and see if it's valid. If it isn't, I don't have any recourse. If it's on the up-and-up, hopefully I'll be able to make use of it. It's still probably not worth everything we had to sit through. I'll have to admit, with their pressure tactics and wearing you down, they're good at obtaining their goal.

Beyond that, the hotel's lovely, the pools are delightful, the food left something to be desired. We ended up not taking the snokeling cruise because we didn't want to be stuck for 4 hrs. on a boat w/uncomfortable-looking metal benches in that heat. We went to Santa Maria beach and found locals renting snorkel gear for $12 ea. and it was a nice snorkeling place. The "glass-bottom boat" was a plain, rather ugly little boat with some 10"x24" panels of dirty glass or something on the bottom, but it was a fun ride out to Lover's Beach and the "Capitan" was very entertaining, describing rock formations and enthusiastically singing Mexican ballads. It was definitely worth doing. (Zaida's was the name of that particular outfit.)
They did honor the $100 discount coupon at the car rental place when we returned it, which was nice, but the initial guy we'd met was not there so we couldn't tell him we were displeased about being misled.
Hope this is helpful to someone. :)

10  Thank Cheryl B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,073 - 4,079 of 4,344 reviews

Reviewed October 12, 2004

I just returned from Los Cabos. I am a Hilton Honors member and have stayed at dozens of Hiltons. The Hilton Los Cabos is a gorgeous resort. The suites include a hot tub, spacious desk, sofa, standing shower, and private balcony overlooking the Sea of Cortez. The two pool areas are spacious and the water feels great. Make sure you wear sandals at the beach; the sand is very "pebbly". NOW, when I stay at a resort I expect the food to be decent if not great. The Hilton fails miserably in this area. La Hacienda restaurant offers a morning buffet. It includes cereal, juices, eggs, waffles, and some other items. The price of the buffet is about $23 dollars per person. The waffles and pancakes taste like you are chewing plastic. The coffee is very bland. The selection of items is very limited. On my last two days I drove to the Fiesta Americana Grand which has a great morning buffet. THE SERVICE AT THE POOL AREA IS NON EXISTENT.

I was very surprised at checkout to see $15 dollar daily service charge. Service for what? The hotel is gorgeous, however the service and food is not worth the money. Stay at a hotel that emphasizes customer service.

  • Stayed: September 2004
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
12  Thank bcrivers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed September 30, 2004

I like an active vacation...

I found this resort to be a great value and would return again. We paid about $125 a night for a very nice ocean view room. The resort is basically loaded with marble from the entrance to the exit. It was perfectly manicured and everyone there exceeded our expectations. However, the most impressive part of the resort is the pool. Nothing will prepare you for the feeling you get when you walk down the marble stairs, half buzzed from the free margarittas at check in, and see the negative edge pool seemingly stretching into the Sea of Cortez from the bluff upon which it sits.

We visited several other resorts, and found this one to be far more reasonably priced than the others and entirely adequate in everyway. However, don't go to this resort expecting to have a lot of enjoyable beach time. The beach here is to look at, not experience. The beach is "coral", not sand. It looks looks like sand, but is actually not too finely ground up coral. It will hurt, no question. Additionally, the waves break on the rocks and the beach, and are meant to be seen and not enjoyed.

Eating: you can always go next door to the all inclusive (Melia) and pay $50-60 bucks for an all day pass to eat and drink...you may want to try it one day.

In Cabo, don't miss "The Office" on a full moon night. It is at the end of a dirt road and they serve you on the beach with tiki torches, fabulous food and music.

At the Marina in Cabo, eat at Dorians...table side meals prepared that were the best in town.

Mexican food from Mi Casa was really great and include free salsa dance lessons from the right waiter.

There are a couple of nice afternoon lunch places in San Jose (closer to the hotel). The Surfer Hotel has a nice veranda to have fish tacos and watch the locals.

Activities: There are some "don't miss" and some "you should try" activities around the area.

If in Cabo, go to Lover's beach and see the Arch..go by water taxi ($10 a person) or by Kayak ($15 an hour). You'll really enjoy the experience right off the marina in Cabo.

Rent a car when you get there: there are $11 cars available from Advantage...they're old and small, but there OK.

Bring your own snorkeling equipment (if you have it) There are a lot of enjoyable free places to go snorkeling (that shuttles will charge you $50 a person to go to)...like Playa Santa Maria...and if you drive there, two locals do beach massages under a tent for $25 an hour.

Bring your surf boards or boogie boards (or rent them). San Jose has a nice break about 10 minutes from your hotel with better sand. If you adventurous, go to the Pacific side where the sand is perfect and so are the waves. Stop at the "Surfer Motel" and rent boards from Jaime for $10 a day. Look for the painted rock about 70 KM North of Cabo (in Pescadarra ??? or something like that). Eat a full meal and dessert at Rosita's for $3.50. It's an hour or so away, but very secluded and beautiful (if you drive this road back at night, you will hit two cows and a mule, very dangerous, so leave before sun down).

Night Life: Everyone should experience Cabo Wabos in Cabo.

Fishing: suck it up and go for a full day. Make sure your boat will take you 30-35 miles out and into the land of the Tunas, Blue Marlins and Mahi Mahis. We opted for the 1/2 day in the bay and ended up with two fish sandwiches. Our neighbor went full day and had over 500 lbs of fish. Bring it back to the Hilton and the'll cook it for you every night.

Take a drive in the country. The Baja is amazing. Mountain peaks are as tall as the Rockies and the coast is like Pacific Highway from the 1900s.

Golf: El Dorado, Palmilla and Cabo Real. Very close to the resort and the quality of Pebble Beach. Twi-light was only ~$70...

Sunset cruises are fun. If you show up with cash when they are departing, you'll save $15 a person. They let two of us on for $50 (2 hours on a sailboat, all you could drink)

Clothing: Leave your pants at home, no self respecting establishment requires them.

Your welcome to contact me if you have some other specific questions.

12  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 27, 2004

Spent over a week in a nice room overlooking the
swim-in bar/restaurant. A little noisy when there was a tour-group staying at the hotel but otherwise
fine. Spent most of my swim time at the secondary pool which is located on the east side of the property (and unkown to most guests). There were always plenty of lounge chairs and the pool was very clean. There are mini-markets spread around the hotel. Drank only bottled water purchased at one of the mini-markets - newspapers (when available) are a couple of days old. A little problem with breakfast - I was supposed to have been given breakfast-cards at check-in to give to waiter at breakfast-buffet. Didn't know about this until waiter kept wanting me to pay for the breakfast. Problem quickly resolved - free breakfast was part of my package. Breakfast buffet was great.

If you like to jog there is a long secondary road in front of the hotel the runs past other properties and has no traffic. If you like to golf there are two (2) world-class courses nearby. With rental clubs and green fees about $250 - cart and bottled water included. Try the one with holes that run along the water - great.

Didn't take any taxis - used public bus service that stops near the hotel (across the freeway) Fare is about US $1. It takes you to downtown Cabo San Lucas which is somewhat dumpy except for the area around the harbor.
If you want to take a cruise/fish try a company called RedRum which has a walkin-office near the water.

The beach at the Hilton is OK but a little rough - once you get accustomed to the wave action its not bad - ignore the vendors who aren't too persistent.

There was a safe in the room for locking up your valuables - suggest it be used. I locked passport, etc., without problem.

5  Thank trippingJack
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 14, 2004

This property is top-shelf. If you want to get away... completely and in luxury, you can't do much better. The pool is the best we have ever seen for relaxing. Staff is excellent. Rooms are spacious. It is very quiet and I found kids to be a little out of place at this resort. Not too much else to say but WOW! Email me with any questions.

  • Stayed: September 2004
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank wreednelson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
San Jose, CA
Reviewed September 13, 2004

My hubby and I just returned from a very relaxing stay at the Hilton Los Cabos.

The service here was good. Everyone was very friendly--the valets, front desk, waiters, etc.. In fact, everyone in Cabo was extremely nice and helpful. Our room was cleaned at least twice a day (in the morning and at turn down) and towels and toiletries were always replenished, a bucket of fresh ice was always on the coffee table when we returned from the pool or from town. We didn't always get fresh bottled water every day though, and you'll definitely need it as it's extremely hot (it is the desert of course).

The Hacienda Restaurant has some delicious appetizers. We loved the ahi tuna and the phyllo-wrapped shrimp. At the pool, we ordered the ceviche almost every day. It is divine--just the right amount of tanginess and lots of fresh fish. Good with the margaritas. Especially good poolside while relaxing in one of the comfy lounge chairs. And if the sun moves and you lose your shade, one of the guys will run over and move your umbrella for you! And just when you think the heat is getting unbearable, someone will come around with a cold towel. Of course there's the gorgeous infinity edge pool where the temperature is perfect.

The beach is beautiful and the water is warm, but the sand is pebbly and course and rough on the feet. Also, it's not as clean as it could be (straws, wrappers, cigarette butts). But not a big deal if you are happy to stay at the pool and just stare at the ocean from your lounge chair or from the pool.

The rooms are nothing spectacular, but the view is awesome (get something on the 5th or 6th floors--we switched from the 2nd floor). The view from the jacuzzi tub is nice too.

You'll definitely want to rent a car if you stay here so you can come and go as you please. We got an excellent deal from Advantage ($18.00 per day for a roomy VW stationwagon). It was totally hassle-free unlike some experiences we've had in the past from some of the big guys like Hertz, Dollar, etc.

We had a delicious dinner at Tequila in San Jose del Cabo and the ambience was lovely. We also had dinner at Pithayas--over rated! Service was spotty and poorly choreagraphed--no one knew what was going on. They didn't even know we had reservations even though the concierge at our hotel called and confirmed. Definitely not worth the price. The steak at the Trailer Park is good but bring cash because they don't take credit cards (we had to do an ATM run to Costco down the highway). We also had a superb breakfast at Palmilla, and the food and the service there was beyond reproach. I also spent the day in their spa while my husband golfed on their course and was definitely queen for a day. We missed out on some of the recommended restaurants because many of them are closed during September which is the off season, but there wasn't a problem finding good food. Be prepared to spend. Cabo has got to be the most expensive place in all of Mexico as far as I can tell!

Overall we truly enjoyed our stay here and would recommend it. But for sublime service and digs, check out the Palmilla or Ventana next door...that's living in high style!

6  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 27, 2004

I've stayed at the Westin and Esperanza, but the Hilton was the best for us with the whole family. There's a wonderful babysitter named Imelda in the kids club. Also, the pools and swim-up bars are divine. The only problems were a gym that was closed for renovations--nobody told us about it and the power kept going out in their "temporary" room (make sure you ask about the gym if you work out and you're going in September)--and man o wars on the beach when there was a storm offshore. We saw one guest who went swimming in the ocean without any knowledge of the creatures (you can see their little bubbly bodies washed up on the beach when they're around) and who was horribly stung on her legs. The pool staff was pathetically slow getting help for her. In their defense, though, they do make some mean pina coladas. We will definitely stay here next time.

2  Thank kranium
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort

Address: Carretera Transpeninsular Km. 19.5, San Jose del Cabo 23447, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Baja California > Baja California Sur > Los Cabos > San Jose del Cabo
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Business Hotel in San Jose del Cabo
#3 Romantic Hotel in San Jose del Cabo
#4 Luxury Hotel in San Jose del Cabo
#4 Spa Hotel in San Jose del Cabo
#4 Top resorts Hotel in San Jose del Cabo
#4 On the Beach Hotel in San Jose del Cabo
#4 Family Hotel in San Jose del Cabo
Price Range: $198 - $703 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort 4.5*
Number of rooms: 375
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover award-winning hospitality at Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort-only 25 minutes from San Jose del Cabo International Airport (SJD). Our Cabo San Lucas resort is located on a tranquil swimming-allowed inlet bay between the towns of Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo, and provides the action of the city and a soothing escape from the hustle of daily life. Relax in the sun beside our signature infinity pool, where our Pool Concierge attends to your every need, whether it's a fresh towel or a tasty fruit pop to help you cool down. With an excellent Kids Program, there are specially designed activities for guests aged 4-12. Choose from a wealth of dining options at this Los Cabos resort's four restaurants. Indulge in innovative massage treatments at Spa Oasis. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hilton Los Cabos Beach And Golf Resort
Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Hotel San Jose Del Cabo
Hilton San Jose Del Cabo
Hilton Los Cabos Beach Resort
San Jose Del Cabo Hilton
Hilton Cabo
Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort San Jose Del Cabo

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