REVIEW - Marquis Los Cabos All-Inclusive Resort & Spa
Hola! If you've been following me on Instagram you might have noticed that I recently went on vacation to Los Cabos, Mexico. I had such an amazing time and received a few questions about my trip and the resort I figured I would share it all here! This post talks about the trip planning and how we selected the resort to the FOOD (of course!) and even my thoughts on some of the excursions. There's also some tips & tricks scattered throughout. Hopefully this is helpful to anyone thinking about taking a similar type getaway :) So let's get started, vamonos!
Why we picked Cabo!
My boyfriend, Jason, and I had a few vacation days left to round out 2017, so in early November we starting thinking about what places we wanted to visit. Our options were narrowed down to a few key criteria: We didn't want to have to take a long flight or cross too many time zones (I'm so bad with jet lag), we wanted to go somewhere new and preferably to a destination not in the US or Canada. We love to travel and take about 3 to 4 trips/vacations each year, so there weren't a whole lot of "close" vacation destinations that were on the top of our list. We first started looking at airbnb's in destinations like Costa Rica (although we've been therefore lol) but then Jason had seen a deal on a travel website for an all-inclusive in Mexico. And as much as we've travelled, we never had been to an all-inclusive resort together before! In the past, we have opted to choose trips where we could hike, explore cities, do outdoorsy activities or have chosen cruises for our more leisurely trips... so I guess a beach R&R getaway was long overdue for us! I personally could lie on a beach 24/7/365 lol I really love the warmth, sun, ocean and relaxation that comes with beach destinations so to say I enjoyed this vacation is a little bit of an understatement.
Anyways, after narrowing down our vacation to a beach all-inclusive resort getaway we had to figure out what country/city to go to. And as some of you might know, I am a hugeee fan of the show Laguna Beach and the Hills (lol!). So if you've ever seen the show... the cast members vacation to Cabo every year.. "What happens in Cabo stays in Cabo!" haha So I basically chose Cabo because of Laguna Beach...I've always wanted to see what all the hype was about! LOL kind of a weird way to choose a vacation but that's me!
We used redtag.ca, costco vacations and trip advisor to do our research on Cabo resorts and finally decided on the Marquis Los Cabos resort. While there were definitely comparable resorts that were cheaper, the reason we selected the Marquis was because it was adults-only and to be honest, it looked stunning in the photos! The tripadvisor reviews were overwhelmingly positive so that sealed the deal. We booked through redtag.ca and the flight provider was Sunwing.
A few tips when booking:
If you are a Costco member, you should compare the Costco packages to Redtag. The Costco packages included transportation and some additional perks, but the redtag package had better direct flight times and was a little bit cheaper (even though it did not include airport to resort transportation)
If you don't get transportation as part of your package, don't worry! We recommend to book a shuttle service to get you to and from the airport, we used a company called Transcabo. Do NOT book through Sunwing (more on this below). Transcabo was a shared shuttle service from the airport and once we exited the airport terminal, we only had to wait a few minutes until we were ushered to the shuttle - it was also much cheaper than the transportation offered as an additional purchase through the Sunwing package. And on our way back, we actually ended up with a private shuttle to the airport which was v nice! The reason I recommend to not book through Sunwing, is because A LOT of travellers book this and instead of a 8 seater shuttle... they use a massive bus. This means, many more stops and longer waits in airport lineups since you will arrive with the big bus group! So... book your own shuttle service :)
Now let me TELL you about the Marquis!
Guys. I can't. I just can't even explain how much I loved spending my vacation at this resort. First off, it's GORGEOUS... the first thing you see is the lobby which is located under a huge arch that perfectly frames the sweeping view of the Sea of Cortez (see below). Upon check-in we were warmly greeted by the staff at the front desk and given a refreshing "Welcome Drink", a great start to our week long vacation. Check in process was so smooth and then we were giving a quick mini tour of the resort and brought up to our room.
Above: The lobby
Above: Welcome drink
The room was equally as stunning as the rest of the resort. We had the Junior Oceanfront room on the 3rd floor with a bottle of champagne and fresh fruit waiting for us. The rooms are big, spacious and very clean... the decor was also so beautiful! The bathrooms were just as spacious and they included a large jetted bathtub, large showers and double sinks. The best part is that the bathrooms are stocked with L'Occitane toiletries, which is one of my favourite luxury french skincare brands! The bathrobes and slippers are comfy and perfect for lounging around when you're in the room. The room also has a stocked mini fridge, it comes filled with Coronitas, pop, iced tea and various snacks (hershey chocolate bars, pringles chips, nuts, etc.) these snacks were so clutch! They refill the mini fridge area everyday so there's always a cerveza or some snacks an arms length away! One of my favourite little touches of the room is that there is a "secret" mini doorway, where they deliver fresh coffee and pastries to your room every morning! It's locked from the inside but it opens to the outside, allowing them to deliver you these treats without having to knock or just leaving them outside - such a little luxury :) And another outstanding service that was provided...is the 24/7 room service. The room service menu has a lot of variety and they will even bring you cocktails/drinks upon request. Room service was always so prompt and professional - really comes in handy if you had too many tequilas the night before and want to enjoy a lazy breakfast in the room :)
Above: View from the room, after a little bit of rain came through one afternoon
Above: L'occitane toiletries :)
Above: It's always mimosa time in Mexico
Now to the food :) I was a little worried that the food wouldn't be that great, it is after all an all-inclusive. But I totally had nothing to worry about! There are 3 restaurants (Mexican, Japanese & Italian) and 1 French restaurant that has a per person charge. We ate at the Mexican, Japanese & Italian restaurants and enjoyed all three of them! The presentation of the food is beautiful, all our meals tasted delicious and left us very full (large servings!) and the service was amazing! A few notable points on each below:
Mexican Restaurant (Vista Ballenas)
- The mole (served with turkey breast) dish was sooo good! I'm not an expert on Mexican cuisine, but this dish was very flavorful!
- The soups were amazing! We tried the poblano cream (delish with a little bit of a kick) and the veracruz fish soup which was so hearty and also yummy!
- The tacos al pastor as a starter was amazing
- The flank steak was always a good choice (we had this for lunch by the pool a few times too)
- Must try the Date Cake as a dessert, I don't know how it is so tasty!!
- The Veracruz fish (main) was muy bueno! It was so tender and flaky and the sauce that it was served with was nomz!
Japanese Restaurant (Sakke)
- There is a teppanyaki/hibachi option which you can reserve (for free), we heard it was a really fun time but we never had a chance to try it out... maybe next time ;)
- The maki/rolls were surprisingly pretty good! We weren't sure how sushi would taste at an all inclusive in Mexico, but we ate here twice and were happy with our meals!
- A lot of the rolls included cream cheese but we're personally not fond of cream cheese in our maki. They were happy to omit the cheese and made our rolls as requested. Ask and you shall receive :) So it was always a no queso order for us!
- The items which fell flat for us were the tempura veggies and the chicken teppanyaki dishes.
Italian Restaurant (Pergola)
- The nice part of this restaurant is that the ambiance is beautiful. It is completely outdoors, under a pergola of course lol!
- They offered freshly baked pizza made fresh in the wood oven right in the restaurant
- The seafood risotto was pretty yummy and the spaghetti bolognese hit the pasta cravings!
During the day we usually dined by the pool. The pool staff will deliver and set up a little eating area right on your beach chair - Awesome! We loved the ceviches!!! (7 different kinds, I tried 4 of them and they were equally amazing), the flank steak, fish tacos, fish fingers, curly fries and of course the guacamole are highly recommended! Another little gem was the coffee shop on the resort where they handcraft espresso drinks like lattes and americanos, which were surprisingly really good! They also had one of my fave treats of the week, sprinkled donuts!! Alongside a variety of other pastries and cookies you could grab and take poolside :)
Breakfast was served in the Mexican restaurant and was either a la carte or buffet style. And it was beyond amazing... I'm not even a breakfast person! The buffet's spread included the usual eggs, bacon etc. but also Mexican dishes like Mexican rice pudding, chilaquiles, chocoflan, refried beans and this wonderfully delicious savoury beef/steak stew that I am definitely going to try to recreate at home!
I can't tell you how happy I was about the food, you will have to check out the pictures below and see for yourself!
Above: The breakfast buffet enjoyed on the beautiful patio
Above: The turkey in mole at the Mexican Restaurant
Above: The amazing date cake!
Above: The Veracruz fish soup at the Mexican Restaurant
Above: The a la carte breakfast... eggs made to order and pancakes with bacon! The green juice was also a nice and wholesome way to start the day!
Above: The coffee and pastries that are delivered to your room each morning! I personally liked to enjoy them out on the balcony!
Above: Lunch by the pool consists of ceviche and flank steak!
Above: The Japanese restaurant, Sakke
Above: The Italian restaurant, Pergola
Excursions and Things To Do
We took two excursions during our stay, organized at the front desk through Cabo Adventures. We did the luxury day sailing and the Off-Road ATV excursion. The luxury day sailing is a MUST if you want to see the famous el arco also known as Land's End. The arch is located in Cabo san lucas, so unless you are staying right in town you will need to get yourself down there and then either take a boat tour or water taxi to see the sight. That's why we choose to do a sailing excursion as it offered us an easy and convenient way to see El Arco. It is quite beautiful as it is in the pics.. although it looks smaller in person! I thought it would be bigger lol Still a must see! You then sail for about 30mins or so to a secluded beach area for snorkelling and paddle boarding. We saw a TON of fish, mostly because the guides were throwing bread in the water haha. Although if you've snorkelled in other places with a lot of coral like Bermuda or Grand Cayman, this beach doesn't really compare since there's not too much coral where we were. But like I said, I would recommend this if you like to snorkel, sail and if you want a convenient way to see El Arco!
The other excursion we took was the off-roading ATV trip. We drove our own ATV/Razr through a canyon type landscape and then onto a beach, it was capped off with a delicious lunch of Mexican sopas. This was a pretty long excursion as it took a while to get to the ATV location, the ATV ride was said to be about 22km but it didn't really feel that long. Overall it was cool to ride the ATV's and the lunch was awesome, but I'm not sure it was worth all that travel time and if it was worth the $150 USD per person price tag.
Aside from these two excursions, we also took part in a few activities at the Marquis:
- Wine tasting: This was a fun activity, my boyfriend and I were the only ones participating at one point in the night so it was like a private wine lesson. It was held by the pool after dinner so the ambiance was perfect!
- Archery on the beach, poker tournament and black jack tables - These were activities that were scattered throughout the week and were all pretty fun!
- Pool volleyball: This was a fun way to compete against other guests, I realized I'm not very good at this sport though!
- Cabo San Lucas bar hop: We did this on the Saturday night and had a blast! You get transportation to downtown Cabo which is like a mini Las Vegas and the Marquis entertainment staff take you to 6 clubs where you get 6 welcome shots and the full VIP/booth treatment at each. It was a great way to experience the infamous club scene in Cabo! Definitely living out my laguna beach dreams lol
The last thing I wanted to highlight was the staff and service at the Marquis, the people there truly made our vacation a memorable one. Some of them even felt like they were our good friends by the end of the trip! As a side note, this is not a sponsored post at all I just wanted to share how awesome my experience was :)
Overall, I obviously had a wonderful vacation and hope this was helpful to anyone who is interested in taking a trip to Cabo! I for one, can't wait until my next trip :) ALSO, leave any questions you might have in the comments below and I'd be happy to help out!
Above: El Arco de Cabo San Lucas
Above: Wine tasting at the Marquis
Above: Day spent sailing :)
Above: Pool time!