The One&Only Palmilla

the pool area at One and Only  Palmilla in Cabo San Lucas
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In the United States we put our right hands over our hearts during the Pledge of Allegiance as a sign of respect. In some cultures, this gesture is a sign of thanks to another. In others, it can be a standard expression of greeting. At the One&Only Palmilla, a hand over the heart is an all-encompassing representation of not only these attributes (respect, thanks, greeting), but a symbolic gesture of their complete ideology. A sign of their warm hospitality, each and every staff member greets you with this genuine expression along with truly authentic smile and hello.

Following a gracious reception, you are whisked into a lush and tropical courtyard replete with an array of greenery and cascading fountain. The decorative fusion of Mediterranean and traditional Mexican design is complimentary to the destination and sets this resort apart from all others. Located on the edge of the dramatic and rocky Baja peninsula where golden desert sands meet breathtaking turquoise waters, the scene is both stunning and romantic. The resort boasts an understated glamorous ambiance with Mexican charm, perfect for any couple looking for a romantic getaway or a honeymoon dreams are made of.

Voted one of the top hotels in the world by numerous news outlets, this resort is the crème de la crème of Cabo. With a multitude of room categories from the lead-in oceanfront rooms, to their casita suites and villas, there are options for a variety of travelers. My personal favorite is their oceanfront casita junior suite with infinity pool. This room is steps away from Turtle beach, only feet away to your own private pool and is the epitome of romance. A day bed on the terrace for lounging and soaking up the Baja sun, littered with candles should you opt for a romantic evening in. A living room and bedroom for lazy mornings and breakfast in bed, not to mention an ornate bathroom with contemporary stone soaking tub and hacienda-style décor all add to the charm that is One and Only Palmilla.

Gastronomy takes on a whole new meaning at this luxurious hotel with the collaboration of Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Executive Chef Larbi Dahrouch and SEARED Chef Stuart Roger. Guests will never be bored at any of their eight dining venues and lounges, and taste buds will delight in everything from Wagyu A5 beef, to fresh-caught ceviche and Moroccan lamb tajine. Every savory bite can be washed down by sommelier-chosen wine pairings, authentic mezcal spicy margaritas, fresh pressed juices and more. Cooking classes are also available to families and couples alike where you can craft your own cocktails, or learn the recipe for an authentic Mexican salsa. To say that the gastronomy at the One and Only Palmilla is anything less than extraordinary would be blasphemous.

If their hospitality, casitas and gastronomy aren’t enough to entice you, then their religious-like spa experience will win over any skeptic. This sanctuary envelops you the moment you walk through the doors and the enchanting scents of jasmine and eucalyptus kiss your nose. With a warm hello and hand over heart, a staff member sweeps you deeper into this opulent and dense oasis. Abundant flowers and vegetation entwine around stone walls that twist and turn, guiding you to your escape from reality.

Inspired by ancient local traditions, their curated collection of treatments combines natural ingredients, modern technologies and holistic therapies for the ultimate spa retreat. You can laze in a day bed under Baja blue skies, take a dip in either the hot or cold outdoor stone pools, lounge in the steam room and let the humid air open your pores, or take in a class in their Yoga garden. With thirteen private treatment villas nestled between stone walls and tropical gardens, the serene and soothing treatments will elevate you from relaxed state, to a completely euphoric one. Missing out on this experience would be the absolute definition of regret. 

The One and Only Palmilla not only raises the bar for all other resorts in the area, but for

luxury resorts world-wide. This resort has cultivated the perfect balance between luxury and casual, hospitable but not over-bearing, glamorous but not ostentatious. To put it simply, the One and Only Palmilla should be on everyone’s bucket lists for the perfect Cabo getaway. The positivity, warmth and happiness in this resort is a palpable energy you feel the moment you step onto the stone-tiled entryway; and stays with you long after you leave.

Kate Johnson