CABO SAN LUCAS TRIP REPORT
July 8 - 15, 2006
We arrived at the airport about 12:30 pm, along with 6 or 7 other planes that
had arrived just before we did. We stood in one of the six immigration lines for
a little over an hour in sweltering heat before reaching the first checkpoint.
Then we found our luggage and did the red light/green light for the luggage
check. We turned left after going thru the first exit door. That turned out to
be the wrong way. We should have turned right where all the ground
transportation was waiting. However, we found Baja Ground Services shortly and
were on our way to Villa del Palmar. ($34.75 per person round trip for a shared
van. But, the four in our group were the only ones in the van.) We did make a
quick stop for some ice cold Pacifico that started to take the frustration edge
off, until we got to the check-in!
VILLA DEL PALMAR:
We were prepared for a goat roping at check-in and it did take over an hour to
check in. We had four rooms and there were some computer glitches between
Interval International and VDP. The Check-in Manager, Rodriglio eventually got
involved. Once he intervened, the check-in got straightened out pretty quickly.
We ended up with one 2BR, one 1BR, and 2 JR. suites (regular hotel rooms) for
eleven people. This was better than the reservations we originally had. The 1BR
and one of the JR suites had good views. The 2BR had a view of the ocean if you
leaned way over the balcony and the other JR suite had a view of the parking lot
and downtown. After we saw the view in the 2BR, we bargained with Anel(one of
the timeshare people), that in exchange for an oceanfront room and gold cards,
four of us would commit to the Villa del Arco timeshare tour. We moved to an
oceanfront room Sunday morning and we went on the tour early Monday morning.
Enough of us had Gold Cards to get the discounts most of the time to offset food
and beverage prices that were a little high. The drinks were good and the food
we tried was above average. The service was good and all the people we ran
across were friendly and helpful. The deli had good items and the groceries
weren't too high for the convenience. On our next trip, and there
will certainly be one, we will make it 9 or 10 days. We'll come in on a Wed. or
Thurs. to beat that Saturday Airport mess and stay downtownish and check in to a
beach resort later. We now solidly agree with all of our "wish they were here
with us" advisors who constantly told us, "one week is not enough in Cabo San
Lucas!" The express checkout we received on Thursday was quick, painless and
worked well. There was a $3.85 tip charge per day on our bill.
GOAT ROPING = a messy or disorganized situation! The nice definition!
We knew the temp. would probably be over 100 for the week. Sweaters, jackets,
and long pants were not packed by anyone. We prepared a list of air conditioned
restaurants, but we didn't use it. Surprisingly, if the restaurant had open
ventilation and there was a breeze it was bearable. We did have A/C in Nik-San
and Los Deseos. At VDP, if you got in the first row or two of chairs closest to
the beach, there was always a good breeze. Forget going in the ocean. A few
crazies tried it, but the ocean was red flagged and then yellow crime scene
taped for DANGER. There was a tropical depression somewhere that caused huge
waves in front of VDP, after the first couple of days. The pools worked just
fine to cool you off and just watching the large waves was mesmerizing.
PEZ GATO SNORKELING:
We took the Pez Gato Snorkeling trip on Tuesday, July 11th. This was our only
organized group tour event. The Captain and his three man crew were very
professional and accommodating during the trip. The snorkeling was about as
expected for this part of the world, but we did see some fish. Once snorkeling
was over, sandwiches, guacamole, and salsa with chips were served. Adult
beverages and sodas were also very readily available for the rest of the trip.
And the crew made sure you had plenty of anything you wanted while the music
played. The Captain also made a picture taking stop at the famous Arch on the
way back. The Captain and his crew got a high recommendation from all in our
group. We'll see them again next trip. The Captain also made a GREAT Bloody Mary
using Clamato juice!!
We did our grocery and liquor shopping at the City Club next to La Golondrina
two or three times. Friday morning, we pooled all our breakfast items and had a
final breakfast cookout in the 2BR unit. We also had after dinner drinks at the
pool bar when we all got back from dinner Friday for an "adios" drink. We rented
a 7 passenger van from Alamo from Sunday morning to Friday morning. It sometimes
carried 9 passengers. The cost for five days going thru the Costco website and
using the $25 discount coupon was $312 total, including liability and using the
credit card damage waiver. We also used taxis, $7 each way downtown for 4
people. We didn't use the public buses, but we could have. They turned around at
the bottom of the hill in front of VDP.
La Golondrina - Two in our group arranged and paid for a welcome dinner Saturday
night. We had two orders of "the works" for eleven and plenty of drinks. The
food was quoted at $320. We had two vouchers for $200. The bill was $507 if we
paid cash, or $557 if we used the coupons. We used the coupons and paid $557. La
Golondrina doesn't recognize the vouchers as cash any longer. The same thing
happened to part of our group that returned to La Golondrina Friday night for
final lobster dinners. Even though vouchers weren't involved this time, they got
a two total bill again. One if you pay cash and one if you use credit (approx.
10% higher). The lobster was very good both nights. All the other items tried
were above average except the BBQ ribs and the tuna, which were just OK to below
average. We will notify Los Cabos Magazine of La Golondrina’s failure to honor
their coupons as cash when we return the two $10 coupons that we didn't use for
a restaurant downtown.
El Meson de "Zapata's" - The food was rated as very good by all. We went there
THREE separate times during the week. The tacos were especially good and low
priced. Most of the tacos were $1.50 each. The exception was the scallop tacos
which were excellent and were $1.80 each. "Zapata's" has ELIMINATED all the happy hours we had read about and were ready to
Gordo LeLe's - The tacos and tortas were very good and of course, low priced. We
were there TWICE and tried the carne asada tortas and tacos, pork tacos and a
combo carne asada and sausage taco. We went across the street and about 25-30
feet down a narrow alleyway to a very small bar with ice cold Pacifico (3 for
$5) and brought them back to Gordo's for our drinks. A CLASSIC experience!!
The Office - Four of the eleven in our group voted the breakfast we had here as
their "BEST MEAL". The four basic meals were huevos rancheros, machaca burritos
open faced, machaca burritos rolled up (3), and some large concoction of
chilaquillas. They were large portions accompanied by several side items. The
food portion of the bill was approx. $32. We also had coffee, orange juice, and
two Bloody Marys. These prices may be a little high, but the food was excellent.
Pizzas - We all had the "El Diablo" 12" pizzas from La Dolce twice, and 16"
pizzas from Baja Cantina once. The pizza at the VDP pool bar had a good crust,
but the toppings were scarce. A large was $20.
VDP - The grilled sea bass was very good at the pool bar. The hot dog cart had
large and very tasty hot dogs for $5. No one in our group found a margarita
anywhere to rave about, but they had a lot of fun trying to find that special
one all over town!!
Tabasco's - drinks and lunch, reasonable prices, good food and excellent spicy
Nik-San - Sushi, one pro, two semi-pros, and two rookies went. The pro gave the
food a 5 or 6, the semi-pros gave it a 6 or 7, one rookie called everything
interesting and one rookie wouldn't try any of it and had the shrimp which was
Love Shack - drinks only, good prices. Good cold Sol beer.
Lenny's - good deli items.
Solomon's Landing - drinks only. Fishy-smelling ice in drinks.
Los Deseos - authentic Mexican, good food. Had the melted cheese in a molten
lava bowl, flamed with tequila at the table. Poblano soup and pecan-crusted
chicken with poblano sauce were excellent. Reasonable food prices.
Latitude 22 Roadhouse - lunch was average, reasonable prices.
Villa Serena - breakfast was average, reasonable prices, good view.
Fish House - served tuna a friend caught that morning, good, but a little pricey
for "our" catch. It was super hot in this restaurant due to no
cross-ventilation. Update - closed some time
before January 2007.
Alexander's Bistro - average food, pricey. One meal lukewarm, the "hanging beef"
for two was more presentation than substance, a bunch of small pieces of carne
asada on hooks on a cylinder with tequila poured on them and set on fire, with
I know that some in our group participated in hanging upside down shots, and
dirty dancing contests (I think we had a winner, but I haven't got all the
details and maybe I won't). I know it was shoulder to shoulder packed in Cabo
Wabo with the music so loud it would shake doors open. Giggling Marlin got a lot
of participation until it was realized they were playing the same sets over and
over every night. El Squid Roe got some of the money also. The Zoo was a jumping
place Saturday night from midnight to 4AM according to a couple of the younger
people in our group.
The reviews on VDP can make you a little uneasy or apprehensive. However, to us
it's like some of the people said; "a vacation trip is what you make out of it!"
We had no complaints on beds or pillows either. We would all give the resort a
good recommendation and we would definitely return to Villa Del Palmar, but we
won't come in on Saturday. Unless it's 7 AM to check in, then come back mid to
late afternoon to get the keys to an already assigned room.