One&Only Palmilla

The legend continues

A stay at the venerable One&Only Palmilla is now even more coveted.

By Caroline Tapp-McDougall

Here, on the tip of the Baja Peninsula where the Sea of Cortez greets the Pacific, warm waves break along the dramatic shoreline of Pelican Beach. With one of the only swimmable beaches in the area, it’s heaven for watersport lovers and whale watchers alike.

In a gracious fusion of traditional and contemporary Mexican décor, swaying palms and flowering tropical bushes are nestled between the azure waters, red-tiled roofs, whitewashed walls and fountains of the One&Only Palmilla star-studded resort.

hf-palmilla3Unrivalled renos
New for this visit along with many other great changes is Villa One, a stunning four-bedroom, 14,000-square-foot private hilltop residence. Breathtakingly reminiscent of a glasshouse, the celeb-worthy villa comes complete with its own butler suite and spectacular floor-to-ceiling views from every room.

The living and dining areas feature an open-display kitchen with a sizable pantry that is personally stocked with whatever a guest might want. Jubjubes, caviar or caramel popcorn, anyone?

Outdoor terraces boast an infinity pool, poolside loungers under a palapa and a large fire pit. Dedicated and exceptionally well-trained household staff include, of course, a 24-hour private butler, a fitness trainer and, for absolutely necessary afternoon massages, a spa therapist.

For the little darlings
New this year, a complimentary Kids Only Club at the resort offers a barrel-load of fun for our little guests. Imagine learning Spanish or golfing with a pro, trying yoga for the first time or kicking back at the pool or with a game of soccer, football or volleyball. We even saw youngsters decked out in their own mini chef whites learning how to make sushi, pizza and mini desserts with the ever-patient resort chefs. Now that’s something to tell mom and dad about at the end of the day!

Unleash your inner artisthf-palmilla2
I’m not a budding artist but I sure had fun. For those who are a little more serious, Art Loggia—a local artist in residence program led by Tanya Talamante—holds regular classes for adults and children. Who wouldn’t be inspired overlooking the Vista Pool Lawn and the Sea of Cortez? Or, for those who need a tad more private inspiration, Tanya or one of her guest artists will come to your villa for sculpture, mixed media or drawing lessons.

Eat, drink and be merry
Still the go-to culinary destination in Los Cabos, Palmilla has added plenty of new items to its menus. At Seared steakhouse, with Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, there’s no doubt about it: The spring pea guacamole and crispy beef short ribs, paired with a unique selection of Mexican wines, are a welcome addition.

The striking view at Agua by Larbi remains, but the offerings on the farm-to-table Mexican menu are even more intriguing. Fresh and fabulous really does take on new meaning here at the source. And, my favourite… Suviche, by Chef Yoshiaki Akaike. Here, the nightly sushi and ceviche dishes, using distinct blends of Mexican and Japanese cuisines, are mouth-watering.

Chef’s new additions of yellowtail ceviche, green apple, jalapeno and lime; blue fin tuna o-toro; and salmon tartar guacamole are worth a visit all on their own.

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