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Go South | Cabo San Lucas: Not That Cabo

Jenna Scatena | October 24, 2011 | Story Travel

Relaxing in your room’s private plunge pool at Capella Pedregal, a relatively new resort on the tip of Baja, feels like lounging at the edge of the world. To your left, the Pacific Ocean collides with the Sea of Cortez. To your right, the hotel scales the mountainside, clinging to rocky, sand-colored cliffs. Margarita in one hand and binoculars in the other, you watch gray whales swim south. The thought of venturing to downtown Cabo crosses your mind, but quickly vanishes; you can’t quite bring yourself to leave your blissful, watery perch.

This is, of course, precisely the idea. Part of the empire of Horst Schulze (former president of the modern-day Ritz-Carlton Group), Pedregal was built at the base of the rocky peak that separates the property from the perennial spring-break atmosphere of Cabo San Lucas. You arrive via a private tunnel—the only way to access the place—and emerge onto 24 acres of luxurious calm: Zen and cacti gardens; swimming pools the same shade of cobalt blue as the ocean; a front desk disguised as a grand terrace, the Pacific gently rocking behind it. Don’t worry about requesting a room with a water view: All 66 have one—a panoramic vista framed by 11-foot floor-to-ceiling windows—as well as a private plunge pool and partially enclosed terrace.

In fact, everything about life at Pedregal makes you feel like you could be at an ashram rather than a hotel (if leisure were a virtue, that is). Breakfast happens right on your deck, and the days require little movement other than a stroll from the pool to the beach near Land’s End, Cabo’s iconic rock formation. The blissed-out theme also rules the spa, where the treatments—ranging from 120 to 180 minutes—are guided by the phases of the moon (different tonics for new, half, and full moon) and incorporate indigenous holistic herbs. Whether you take that as hocus-pocus or scripture, the effect is nothing short of transcendental, especially combined with the dreamy look of the place, which was designed by Sylvia Sepielli of Nob Hill Spa. Royal-blue mosaics blanket the wall, and sunshine seeps through the narrow skylights: It’s like being underwater.

Back in your room, let the lazy rhythm continue to reign: Pour yourself an aperitif, slip back into your private pool, and relish the thought that tomorrow will be exactly the same.

Beyond the Gates:
Surf at Playa Costa Azul. Day-trip to the galleries of Todos Santos, an artsy town 75 minutes north. Charter a yacht for closer views of the whales that migrate a mile or less from shore every winter (January through March). Resort hop to check out Cabo’s culinary scene, most notably LaFrida at Pueblo Bonito Sunset Beach (the charred-tuna-jaw taco made with fish caught off the coast was itself nearly worth the three-hour flight).



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