Where to Stay for Los Cabos International Film Festival
Michelin restaurants, mansions, spas and private beaches are just some of the luxurious amenities Cabo offers Hollywood A-listers.
Now in its sixth edition, the Los Cabos International Film Festival, which is set to run Wednesday through Nov. 12, will feature a strong lineup of Oscar hopefuls such as Battle of the Sexes, Downsizing, Molly’s Game and Three Billboards Outside Ebbings, Missouri, each making their Mexican premiere in gala screenings, as well as notable indie and international titles. As the annual confab's profile rises, attracting more Hollywood A-listers, so, too, do the accommodations, with luxury hotels and resorts ready to cater to the every whim of stars and handlers for the five-day fest.
The Resort at Pedregal is one of Cabo San Lucas’ most luxurious destination spots, boasting airport pickup from the door of the plane to your own private entryway, Dos Mares Tunnel, a chandelier-lit cave. It can double as a private dining room, but it would be foolish to miss out on the coast’s most luxurious restaurant, Chef Gustavo Pinet's El Farallon, which draws well-heeled diners from all over Los Cabos. It sits adjacent to the champagne terrace, offering everything from Dom Perignon to Krug. For $4,000 per night, the two-story 3-bedroom Presidential Suite is a 4,000 square-foot villa with glass walls overlooking the Sea of Cortez and a private infinity pool a few steps from the sand. Also included is a personal butler as well as private dining and drinking. If that strains your budget, try a one-bedroom ocean-front suite beginning at $1,750.
During 2012’s G20 summit, Esperanza, an Auberge Resort hosted VIPs President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Clinton's villa included a 4,000 square-foot, four-bedroom, indoor/outdoor private living space. Meals can be taken at the cliffside Cocina del Mar, where chef Gonzalo Cerda offers an array of fresh seafood, such as Salt Crusted Totoaba or Leopard Grouper. The romantic private beaches are just the thing for couples, including former guests Fergie and Josh Duhamel, as well as Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin, who were married there.
Dating back to 1956, One&Only Palmilla used to cater to people like John Wayne, Lucille Ball and President Dwight D. Eisenhower. These days, it has been called “one of the best hotels in the world” by Conde Nast Traveler on its Gold List 2017. That’s good enough for guests like Oprah Winfrey, Eva Longoria, Bethenny Frankel, Hugh Jackman and Jennifer Aniston. Those last two sprung for the 10,000 square-foot hacienda, Villa Cortez, which accommodates nine adults and includes a 24-hour on-call butler as well as a culinary and household staff of 12. And if you’re a little light in the wallet, there are always oceanfront single rooms starting at $785. With the money you save, you can visit the award-winning One&Only Spa or the OBO salon, featuring Beverly Hills stylists Jonathan Antin and Amanda George offering last minute touch-ups before red-carpet galas. Farm-to-table restaurant Agua by Larbi is a great place to dine, but Michelin-starred chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s SEARED is even better, offering fresh seafood and lobster dishes.
Las Ventanas el Paraiso offers the private 24,000 square-foot Ty Warner Mansion, which comes with a personal assistant and butler, culinary staff, wine cellar, tequila library, chauffeured car, infinity pool, screening room, putting green and fireworks display upon request for a pittance of $35,000 per night. And if your boss booked the mansion, you can take the 960 square-feet ocean-view Junior Suite for the reasonable price of $710. The spa is one of Los Cabos’ most popular, counting Cameron Diaz, Jessica Alba, Jennifer Lopez, Mary Kate Olsen and the Kardashians among its guests. Chef Fabrice Guisset serves up authentic Mexican cuisine at El Restaurante, drawing from the region’s traditional techniques like Cocina del Fuego, or fire roasting.
Overlooking the famed Cabo San Lucas arches, ME Cabo is good enough for past guests like Isabella Rosselini, Andy Garcia, Jared Leto and Dan Aykroyd, and that makes it good enough for you. Suites start at $599 and go up to $5,000 for the 5,360 square-foot Suite ME, three units connected by a grand stairway, with pool and ocean views as well as a custom DJ booth for parties. Blue Marlin Ibiza Restaurant is popular with travelers and locals alike, featuring dishes like fresh tuna loin with homemade spicy seaweed salad and soy dressing, washed down with the JPN Connection, a potent potable made from Don Julio Silver tequila, sake, lychee liqueur, ginger and lemon syrup, fresh lime and dragon fruit. But if you prefer a night on the town, the marina, with its profusion of restaurants and bars, is just a short walk away.
Nearby is Hotel El Ganzo, where Adam Levine put his wedding guests when he married Behati Prinsloo at nearby Flora Farms. It’s also a favorite of Sean Penn, Charlie Sheen and Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash. De Cortez Restaurant at the Sheraton Hacienda del Mar was just honored with Wine Spectator’s 2017 “Award of Excellence,” stealing the prize from last year’s winner, its other eatery, Pitahayas Restaurant. Newly opened lodgings this year inlcude The Cape, a Thompson Hotel, where stars like David Arquette and The Hill’s Whitney Port have been spotted, as well as Chileno Bay Resort & Residences. And if you’re having trouble finding a room, you won’t next year when Los Cabos will add roughly a half a dozen new resorts.