Last updated: 09:37 AM ET, Thu November 17 2016

Is Los Cabos Becoming a Luxury Leader in the Americas?

Destination & Tourism Greg Custer November 17, 2016

Is Los Cabos Becoming a Luxury Leader in the Americas?

Photo courtesy of Thinkstock

It was 10 years ago the first Los Cabos VIP Summit came about, a chance for the area’s resorts to court new relationships with tour operators and already-robust OTA sales supporters. In 2006, Los Cabos was well on its way to resort stardom: a desert-by-the-sea mecca for deep-sea fishing and golf enthusiasts was already gaining a nationwide following of American and Canadian agents and their clients. Yet the Cabo of ten years ago was still Baja on the brink, daring to reimagining its future stature as a global luxury leader.

Ten years on, Los Cabos has yet again elevated its swanky stature, as even more top-tier brands vie for the luxury customer of tomorrow. Over 4,000 new sleeping rooms will hit the market by the end of 2018, begging the question: is Land’s End to become the end all for cutting edge luxury in the Americas? Judging from the tempo of change and new players laying foundations, it's a race to get the doors open (and find workers) like Mexico’s west coast has never witnessed.

Once confined to a small Pacific-facing footprint (Playa Solmar), the Los Cabos of tomorrow marches north toward Todos Santos with golf, residential and resort openings along coastal dunes silent and untouched for millennia. Simultaneously, to the east is Grupo Questro’s Puerto Los Cabos, anchoring a fully-integrated marina-golf-resort cluster with new flagship resorts opening in the next 12 months.

Construction cranes outnumber palm trees along the destination’s booming Corridor (the 33 kms separating San Jose del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas). First to open will be Grand Velas Los Cabos, a sister of the renowned Grand Velas AAA Five Diamond all-inclusive resorts in both Nuevo Vallarta and the Riviera Maya. Its 300 spacious, contemporary appointed suites will up the all-inclusive ante in a destination already recognized for all-inclusive and EP refinement.

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Across this expanded resort landscape, brands already available in other Mexican destinations are sprinting to open: St. Regis, Costa Palmas by Four Seasons, Rancho Solmar, Le Blanc, Breathless, Ritz-Carlton, Villa Valencia by Villa Group, Vidanta and Hard Rock. Joining this prestigious roster are new entrants, burnishing world renowned credentials not before part of Mexico’s luxury resort line-up: Montage, Solaz by Sheraton, Chileno Bay Resort & Residence (by Auberge), Park Hyatt, and Nobu Hospitality. It’s not as if luxury were new to Los Cabos; One&Only, Auberge, Rosewood, and newcomer Thompson all have loyal luxury cred in a place where celebrity weddings and escapades are weekly fodder for the global paparazzi.

Yes, we’ve seen Mexico resort booms, however, this crescendo of construction is quite unprecedented. A destination already known for its Hollywood royalty reputation is climbing yet another rung in the luxury ladder. It’s going to get interesting, once the dust (literally) settles. Let’s stay tuned to this jostle for the travel agent loyalty they will all need to succeed.