Pueblo Bonito Rose.
I said the name aloud as I reread my confirmation email. My first ever trip to Los Cabos was booked and I was staying at a Pueblo Bonito resort. Just a little bit of my background on staying at an all-inclusive resort – I had zero experience. So not only was it my first time in Cabo, it was also my first time at an all-inclusive resort. I had no expectations, which was both a good thing and also a not so good thing. On one hand, it was an entirely new experience and I could be pleasantly surprised in every way. On the other hand, it was an entirely new experience and I could also be unpleasantly surprised.
So how did it go?
Let me break it down for you.
There are basically two parts of Cabo – Cabo San Lucas and San Jose Del Cabo. I could write a whole blog post on the differences, but for the simplicity of this post, Pueblo Bonito Rose is in Cabo San Lucas. It is farther away from the airport, but closer to El Arco and Land’s End. The resort is about 35-40 minutes from the airport depending on the speed of your shuttle driver.
You can also arrange airport shuttles to and from the airport and your Pueblo Bonito resort for about $14 USD. However, you need to make your reserves 24 hours in advance or…well, you’ll end up like me and need to get an expensive private taxi because your plane is leaving in 1.5 hours and there are no other options.
But I digress.
We pulled up to Pueblo Bonito Rose a few hours before check-in, but they held our bags and gave us our all-inclusive wristbands while we waited for our room to be ready. We ate breakfast just a few steps from the sand and beautiful water.
It is also right next to a dozen other resorts, restaurants, and hype bars along the Medano Beach coastline. Some of the most famous restaurants and bars are less than a 10 minute walk from Pueblo Bonito Rose: Mango Deck, The Office, Edith’s, and Sur Beach House. But yanno, since I was all-inclusive, I visited absolutely zero of those places. BUT, they’re close! Always gotta have options, right?
It’s also close to a lot of the Cabo attractions, and by attractions, I mean Land’s End. Land’s End is where El Arco, Lover’s Beach, Divorce Beach, and all other stages of marriage are wrapped up into one quick glass-bottom boat ride from Medano Beach. They are the iconic experiences in Los Cabos, and you can book a boat tour directly from the hotel if you don’t feel like haggling with the vendors on the beach.
As far as hanging out in town, the marina is a 6 minute taxi ride (or 17 minute walk!) from the resort and is surrounded by tons of shopping, food, and nightlife.
Let’s talk about the room. I booked the junior suite and paid for my room and the inclusive package myself, so this wasn’t a sponsored trip or anything. I’m not an expert on square footage, but the room comfortably fit two double beds, a living/dining area with a table and chairs, a fully stocked kitchenette, and the TV (and TV stand). A good size! I didn’t use the kitchenette (because i don’t even cook at home so im not gonna cook on vacation), but everything was updated and modern. The bathroom was GORGEOUS, and extremely spacious! The provided toiletries were nicer than the ones I brought from home haha.
Each junior suite also comes with either a private balcony (that’s what I got!) or private terrace (for rooms on the first floor). The room will either have an ocean view or a garden/pool view. I requested an ocean view, but I ended up with the garden view. As it turned out, however, I could see both the pool and the ocean!
The other option is the luxury suite, but ya girl aint ballin like that.
The pool is probably the amenity people care about the most. I’m not much of a pool person, so I’ll just give you the facts and let you be the judge.
- It’s pretty big
- There’s a “scuba” tub, whatever that means
- There are lots of shallow places to chill
- Lots of chairs
- Plenty of shaded areas and sun areas
- Close to food
- Has basketball hoop
How would you rate the pool on a scale of 0 (the pool at Circus Circus in Las Vegas aka worse than not having a pool) to 10 ?
The spa was also a really amazing experience! I had never had any sort of spa treatment or massage, so my first spa day was…well, it was an adventure. It was also amazing though. I had never felt so relaxed in my entire life. The staff was friendly, helpful, accommodating, and sooo so good with their hands.
I will write a separate post dedicated to my experience at the spa, so I won’t drop TOO many details here, but know this: it was named one of the Top 10 Hotel Spas of Mexico, Central, and South America by the readers of Travel + Leisure.
Pueblo Bonito doesn’t mess around when it comes to relaxing. The resort also has a state of the art fitness centers, and all-inclusive guests have unlimited access! There are super sleek treadmills, ellipticals, and weights. They even offer daily activities like dance lessons, yoga (even on the beach!!) and water aerobics in the pool. I had full intention of visiting the fitness center, but as with my everyday life, I didn’t.
I mentioned before that the resort offers shuttles to and from the airport, but they also have shuttles that can take you between the sister resorts, Pacifica, Sunset Beach, Los Cabos, and Montecristo Estates.
Just a few of the activities offered by the Pueblo Bonito family include:
- Spanish Lessons – check
- Tennis Courts – check
- Water Aerobics – check
- Salsa Lessons – check check
- Botanical and Nature Preserve Tours – check
- Bingo – B4 check
- Cooking and Bartending Classes – check
Here is what a daily schedule of the resort activities might look like.
There’s always something to do at Pueblo Bonito Rose, or some new skill to learn (I’m a champion at black jack now). You aren’t just confined to the resort though. You can swim with dolphins at the Cabo Dolphins Marine Center and even become a “Trainer for a Day” program for a more hands-on experience. Me personally, I don’t trust dolphins.
Los Cabos is known (at least to biologists) for it’s marine wildlife. You can take a whale watching tour or snorkel in the Sea of Cortez, one of the most diverse seas on the planet. There are also ATV tours, city tours, food tours (yaas), ziplining, horseback riding, camel riding (I’m serious), boat cruises, and tons of desert exploration. All of this, at your fingertips.
Even the nightlife was bangin – AND CLOSE BY. If you have the all-inclusive package, Pueblo Bonito Rose will HOOK YOU UP with the pre-game realness. After one or two (or seven, who’s counting?) drinks, head over to the best bars and clubs in town. Cabo Wabo, Blue Marlin (LITERALLY RIGHT NEXT DOOR), El Squid Roe, The Giggling Marlin, and the Nowhere Bar, just to name a few. If you’ve been to the clubs in Cancun, then you’ll even recognize a few famed clubs like Mandala, La Vaquita, and Senor Frog’s.
The food was my favorite part of the whole experience. It was delicious. I’m not a gastro connoisseur by any means, but I know good food when I taste it. There are a few different restaurants at Pueblo Bonito Rose, but I fell in love with the buffet and didn’t end up trying all of them.
I would make a terrible food blogger.
My favorite spot for breakfast was the buffet. In fact, I was so obsessed I didn’t go anywhere else for breakfast. There were tons of options, BUT TRUST ME WHEN I SAY TO GET THE FRENCH TOAST. It was the best I’ve ever had. Imagine the perfect blend of cinnamon, sugar, and…uh, whatever else is in French Toast.
The buffet also had eggs and sausage and stations to order omelettes and whatnot – yanno, all of the usual American breakfast staples. They also had Mexican breakfast items too, and allll of the fresh fruit you could ever imagine. AND DON’T GET ME STARTED ON THE BREAD BAR. It’s basically a whole table dedicated to bread, muffins, bagels, and all things sweet carb related. I had died and gone to heaven. The buffet also featured a table perfect for kids, with juice boxes and finger sandwiches.
For lunch, there are a few different options, but I’ll touch on the sushi place! Again, gorgeous seating and it was the best Kung Pao chicken I’ve ever had (in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico of all places??)
Since I spent a large amount of the day by the pool, sampling absolutely everything was the most logical thing to do. My top recommendations would be the Caesar salad, the BBQ wings (yaaaaz), and the BLAT (bacon lettuce avocado tomato) sandwich was super dope! I didn’t personally try the ceviche, but a group next to me ordered like 20 of them so i have a feeling its really good too.
For dinner, the best you can get is at the Quivira Steakhouse. Its REAAAL NICE. Like, 5 stars plus some. It is not completely included in the all inclusive package, but it only only costs $35 extra for a fancy multiple course meal with UNLIMITED BREAD and OLIVES. The meat was insanely juicy and tender, and the dessert was amazing. I don’t even like cheesecake, but I couldn’t stop eating it.
I chose a sunset reservation, and I’m so glad I did. The restaurant is right on the beach (I’m sensing a theme) and since it’s on the other side of the mountain, you get to see the full sunset on the horizon.
The service was outstanding, what you would expect from any fine dining establishment. Also, I love added touch of the heat lamps – it can get chilly at night! The staff even offered a throw blanket for a woman who was sitting a little further away from the lamp. She looked real cozy. I had the opportunity to speak with Chef Carlos. His eyes danced with passion when he told me about his cooking and the restaurant. That’s how ya know you’ve picked a good place.
Some notable mentions that I didn’t have the chance to try were the restaurants at Pueblo Bonito Sunset Beach. They have a whole market area with different shops and cuisine. I had stopped by after my dinner at the Steakhouse and I was already stuffed to the brim.
When I was trying to decide between which resort to pick, I had no idea what to look for or what I wanted out of the experience. Thus, I turned to the tripadvisor and hotel.com reviews. Pueblo Bonito Rose was practically untouchable in all areas – however, there was one ding.
The “most common” ding from the internet reviews (though still rare) was that the service was bad or slow. I personally didn’t experience this. Granted, I wasn’t there during Spring Break, but it was still the relatively high season. At all the restaurants I visited, everyone was seated either immediately or within a minute or two. Excluding the buffet (because that’s self serve), the wait time for ordering and receiving food was normal. Beverage options were offered right away. Honestly, all the restaurants were top notch in service.
The pool service worked a little differently. There was a longer wait, but I also don’t go to a pool to immediately eat. The staff made their rounds asking for food and drink orders every fifteen minutes or so. They visited less often if you didn’t seem to order, more often if you started putting in requests (especially if you wanted to keep the drinks flowing).
One day, I had been chilling on a lounge chair by the pool for about half an hour and an older guy came to sit next to me. After about three minutes or so, he started grumbling and wondering where is the waiter. “Yanno, they have some terrible service, right?” He said to me.
I ignored him and stared harder at my phone.
Seven minutes later, the waiter drops by to check in on our area. “About time!” The guy complained, “I had been waiting forever.” He had been waiting for ten minutes. Most of the “bad service” complaints lined up with situations like that. So, while I don’t want to necessarily discredit someone’s experience, both myself and the vast majority of guests had a 4 or 5-star experience. As with any place you travel, be humble and respectful.
My only real piece of advice for someone staying at Pueblo Bonito Rose is to know that the concierge and the person who arranges the shuttles are not at all connected. The shuttles operate semi-independent from the hotel concierge, so make sure you contact the right personnel for shuttle concerns (like losing an item on the shuttle or making shuttle reservations).
At some point, I will get around to doing a short piece on what I thought of the sister resorts, but for now I’ll wrap things up. I am glad my first all-inclusive resort was with Pueblo Bonito Rose. It was more than exceeded my expectations.
You can get more detailed information and book your stay at Pueblo Bonito Rose on their website !
The Awkward Traveller’s Rating : 5/5
Have you ever stayed at an all-inclusive resort? What are some resort must-haves for you?