Best Hotel In Los Cabos: Las Ventanas Vs One & Only Palmilla


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We have already reviewed the best luxury hotels in Los Cabos. In this review, we compare the 5 star Las Ventanas al Paraíso vs. One & Only Palmilla.

While Los Cabos itself is surrounded by mega-hotels, giving it the feel of a Mexican Vegas, the luxury resorts that sit further from the main resort area are fairly incredible, ultra-luxurious, and well worth visiting.

Both Las Ventanas al Paraíso vs. One & Only Palmilla are iconic hotels in Los Cabos. They both offer unrelenting luxury, and you are likely to love your stay, whichever resort you choose.

We have compared each hotel below and have then reviewed each hotel separately so that you get more of an idea of which is best for you.

  • Best For Luxury: Both!
  • Best For Tropical Grounds: One & Only Palmilla
  • Best For Pools: Las Ventanas has four (or is it five…) infinity pools, so you are never fighting for a seat or looking for space
  • Best For Poolside Amenities: Las Ventanas for their poolside umbrella positioning, chilled towels, buckets of ice water, Evian face mist, popsicle cart that comes around with freshly made fruit pops, and there is a buzzer at each lounger so that you can summon an attendant
  • Best For Calm: Las Ventanas with its relaxing atmosphere
  • Most Breathtaking: Las Ventanas
  • Best For Romance: Las Ventanas. This place is made for romance, so understandably attracts lots of couples and honeymooners
  • Best For Unobtrusive But Efficient Service: Las Ventanas
  • Best For Falling Asleep To The Sound Of The Surf: Las Ventanas
  • Best For Light Sleepers: One & Only Palmilla. At Las Ventanas, you can hear the waves even with the windows and doors closed
  • Best Butler Service: One & Only Palmilla
  • Best Pools: Las Ventanas
  • Best For Families: One & Only Palmilla for their excellent children’s and teens’ club and a private surf school
  • Adult Atmosphere: Las Ventanas as it is smaller with a more intimate and personal atmosphere
  • Best For Golf: Las Ventanas is better-located for top-notch golf courses
  • Most Exclusive: Las Ventanas
  • Best For Celebrity Spotting: Las Ventanas
  • Best Beach: Las Ventanas has extensive oceanfront acreage, so the beach always feels empty, even when the resort is full. The beach here feels more exclusive
  • Spa: Las Ventanas. While the treatments are not outstanding, the calming ambiance, the cold plunge pool, hot tub, steam room sauna and relaxation area make it a winner

Four Seasons and Aman have both launched resorts in Costa Palmas on the East Cape and even further from the super touristy parts of Los Cabos. Both these resorts are worth considering before making your final decision.

Esperanza, an Auberge Resort & Spa, is your other outstanding choice in Los Cabos and should also be considered before making your final stay decision.

1. Las Ventanas Al Paraiso, A Rosewood Resort

Las Ventanas Al Paraiso, A Rosewood Resort, pictured above, is described by some as “heaven on earth”. It is situated near the peaceful San Jose Del Cabo and offers 84 luxurious suites and villas, including 12 Signature beach villas. The resort is just half an hour from Los Cabos airport.

From the first moment you arrive behind the discreet gates, you are welcomed with open arms. Your stay starts with the complimentary arrival Mariachis (frozen margaritas), a special touch, and your stay will get better from here on in. The welcome at the hotel can be overwhelming or cute, depending on your mindset, with around 4 members of staff and often a full-on mariachi band all celebrating your arrival.

Rooms come with suite butlers, and the grounds are gorgeous. Taking the Gardenview Jr. King Suite as an example, this room is large, and most rooms in this category have a distant view of the Sea of Cortez. Although these rooms are not directly oceanfront, the view from their massive balcony is an angled ocean view.

The best rooms at Las Ventanas al Paraísois (without breaking the bank) are near the smaller pools (201-208 & 301-308). These rooms are also closest to the ocean. We think these are the best as you rarely have to share the pool nearest your room with more than 2 couples, making the whole experience very private.

Extras within each room, such as a telescope for viewing the night sky and aromatherapy choices included with turndown service, make this place even more special.

The Signature Beachfront and Oceanview Villas are perfect for a special event or a honeymoon, and sit steps from the legendary Sea of Cortés. From private, infinity-edge pools to the expansive bathroom, with its steam and rain shower and infinity bathtub for two, this authentic Mexican villa awakens all senses to the wonders of this private paradise. Don’t miss the recently added beach cabanas with private Jacuzzis.

This resort is most special at night, with the twinkling glow of lanterns and candles illuminating the pathways. Some nights there are fireworks, others will tempt you to sit on the beach in the evenings, listening to the waves and looking up at the clear night sky dotted with stars.

Five distinct dining venues include coastal cuisine with Asian influences at Arbol, an authentic Mexican menu at El Restaurante, Sea Grill featuring ‘La Marisqueria,’ savory street tacos at Taqueria, and an authentic and fresh ceviche experience at the Tequila & Ceviche Bar. All are excellent. Everything is super fresh, and the quality is superb. The restaurant also has a cocktail lounge where they have live music at night.

Leisure activities include world-class golf, an acclaimed spa, deep-sea fishing, water sports, and ultra-luxury amenities and programs, along with poolside pampering by their highly-trained team of pampering Pool Butlers at the legendary Infinity Pool. The beach feels like your own private oasis with the most respectful and discreet staff.

For your honeymoon or couples break, there is a “Director of Romance” dedicated to making guests’ romantic dreams come true. The Spa at Las Ventanas is heralded as one of the world’s top spas, featuring exquisite indoor-outdoor treatment rooms, private terraces, duet suites for couples, a serene solarium, and a full-service beauty salon. The treatment menu features a variety of holistic treatments inspired by the resort’s surroundings in Los Cabos.

2. One&Only Palmilla

One & Only Palmilla is located much nearer to San Jose del Cabo than Las Ventanas, which means it is more convenient for excursions outside the resort grounds. Conversely, the location feels slightly less exclusive than Las Ventanas.

Probably the biggest advantage of One & Only Palmilla’s is the beach, which is generally much more swimmable than that of Las Ventanas. That said, Four Seasons and Aman also have very similar beaches as they are on the calmer side of the Cape, so if this is a deal-breaker, these two resorts should also be considered as well.

Although the waves here can be both spectacular and rough, the infinity pools elevate you so that you can enjoy views of the Pacific, even when the waves crash against this rocky peninsula. The good news is that one of the beaches here is safely swimmable year-round.

One&Only Palmilla attracts celebrities and Hollywood A-listers, although not as many as at Las Ventanas. It ticks all the boxes with impressive fine dining, an excellent spa, and at certain times of the year, you can watch distant humpback whales navigating the Pacific.

The feel of this resort is Spanish colonial with white-washed walls. The bars and restaurants here ooze sophistication with colorful furnishings. The open-air terrace named Breeze overlooks the pools and is a good place to take breakfast or lunch. Expect your breakfast to have a touch of Mexican mixed in with the usual. For example, how do scrambled eggs, guacamole, and Pico de Gallo sound?

Suviche offers sushi and a bar in the evening, or try one of two beachside grills. For something special, head to the most high-end restaurant in the resort, ‘Seared’ by Michelin-starred Jean-Georges Vongerichten, which serves a delicious gourmet menu with a hint of Mexican.

Service is incredible if sometimes tiring as staff greet you and bow each time you see you. Somehow they haven’t got this quite right (at least for the less vivacious guest who wants to hide away rather than be constantly greeted), so for service alone, I would always prefer the rockstar intimacy of Las Ventanas, the Aman, or the perfectly non-intrusive service of the new Four Seasons Los Cabos.

The One&Only Spa has its own yoga garden and treatment cabanas situated in landscaped courtyards. There’s also an excellent children’s and teens’ club and a private surf school making this a great choice for families with children. There is also a Jack Nicklaus 27-hole golf course exclusive to the resort, along with paddle boarding and tennis.

Standard ‘Ocean Front’ rooms are large, but ‘Pool Casita Suites’ are perfect for a special occasion or a honeymoon and have a private plunge pool and incredible ocean views and are the ones to pick if your budget stretches that far.

Note: Benefits & upgrades subject to availability. Benefits offered correct at the time of writing. Terms & conditions apply. Enquire for more information. Posts may be sponsored by the proprietor or brand being appraised. All opinions remain our own & are in no way influenced.