Meagan Drillinger
Meagan Drillinger

As Los Cabos continues to grow as a luxury destination, its tourism offerings are expanding beyond the traditional locales of Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. From the coasts of the Pacific to the beaches of East Cape, the Baja Peninsula is in rapid development mode to support the increase in luxury arrivals.

Rodrigo Esponda, managing director of the Los Cabos Tourism Board, said that international arrivals were up in Los Cabos for the first six months of 2019: 4% in overall international arrivals and 17% in international private jet arrivals. According to Esponda, the luxury market has been the driving factor in the growth of these outlying areas around Los Cabos, as well as traditional Los Cabos.

While most everyone is familiar with the Golden Corridor, the Pacific side of the destination is slowly starting to be tapped. More than 1,500 hotel rooms will come online within the next three years, and the recently built toll road provides easier access from the SJD airport to downtown Cabo San Lucas, a 20-minute drive.

The news is out on Nobu Hotel Los Cabos, which made its grand debut in April, as well as the Hard Rock Hotel Los Cabos, which also recently opened. In 2021, St. Regis Los Cabos will open its doors with a 120-room luxury beachfront hotel and 60 residences within the Quivira Los Cabos development.

Grand Solmar at Rancho San Lucas opened its first phase in January 2018 and later this year will bring a new Greg Norman 18-hole golf course, a Mexican Village shopping center and entertainment center, Norman Estate residences and more.

On the other side of the peninsula, both Ritz-Carlton Reserve Zadun and Four Seasons will open on Nov. 1.

Nearly a year ago, Esponda spoke with me about rolling out 10 off-the-beaten-path experiences to be promoted within Los Cabos to show off aspects of the destination that have not been traditionally integrated into the most popular experiences.

This week Esponda reported that Pleasant Holidays will be the first U.S. tour operator to bring the experiences to the U.S. market to connect them directly with travel agents. "Pleasant Holidays will be offering three of the 10 experiences in September to travel agents and the market," said Esponda. The first experience will be Meet the Locals, which allows visitors to connect with local pillars of the community, from artists and painters to unique characters. The second experience will be a visit to El Triunfo and Todos Santos, two towns that have been growing in terms of cultural offerings, food, art and more. And the third is an Art-to-Table concept, which combines gallery perusing with farm-to-table dining and experiencing Los Cabos' organic farms.

Finally, Los Cabos will be opening the office of the Los Cabos Tourism Board in Los Angeles on Sept. 1, which will be a way to further promote the destination within the United States and will be a resource for travel agents when booking vacations to Los Cabos and beyond.


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