by Michael J. Shapiro | October 02, 2019

Mexico's first Waldorf Astoria hotel has debuted in Los Cabos with the rebranding of the Resort at Pedregal, an iconic luxury property that was recently acquired by a real-estate investment firm. Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos Pedregal completed its rebranding last week, as Northstar's Destination Mexico event was getting underway nearby in the Diamante area of Los Cabos.

The acclaimed 119-room luxury resort didn't require a major makeover to meet Waldorf Astoria brand standards, said the hotel's sales and marketing director, Jorge Villarreal. "The Waldorf Astoria team was very happy with the way we've been doing things," he said. "Our guests might not even notice the changes," he pointed out, referring to brand upgrades like the mattresses standard to Waldorf Astoria hotels and the new TVs, which are just two inches larger than the ones previously in the guest rooms. The staff remains the same, as well, he added.

The 10-year-old Cabo San Lucas property is on one of the most memorable Los Cabos locations, a 24-acre hillside at the southern tip of the Baja California Peninsula. The main entrance to the grounds is just a stone's throw from the marina, but accessing the hotel itself requires driving through a private tunnel to the other side of the rocky hillside, to far more secluded oceanfront grounds.

The resort offers both spacious guest rooms and residential-style suites, including one-bedroom Dos Mares suites, two-bedroom beachfront suites and a presidential beachfront suite. Each room has its own infinity-edge plunge pool on the patio or terrace.

The unique 12,000-square-foot Waldorf Astoria Spa opens oyster-style to the ocean on one side. A shallow saltwater pool sits between the winding paths that connect the treatment rooms to the rest of the spa. New to the facility this year are treatments based on the phases of the moon, which use techniques to enhance energy and healing specific to individual phases. A Mexican folk-healing treatment dubbed the Intention is new this year, as well.

Among the food-and-beverage options are El Farallon, the resort's featured "ocean-to-table" restaurant that sits on a cliff overlooking the water; Don Manuel's, which serves breakfast and dinner with an emphasis on local, organic ingredients; Crudo Bar, a raw bar in the center of the main pool specializing in ceviche, Peruvian tiraditos and Mexican-inspired rolls; Beach Club, a casual poolside restaurant; and the new Va y Viene Beach Bar, a mobile bar serving Champagne by the ocean.

The resort team has created Beyond the Beach, Curated Explorations for small groups who want authentic Baja-California experiences. "There is so much rich Mexican culture to experience in this region, beyond the resorts," said Villarreal, "but there is usually so much in the service part of that experience that we can't control. So we thought, why don't we work with locals in these destinations and then provide our transportation, our bilingual guides, our food when needed, to curate activities with the level of service we're known for."

The idea has proven wildly popular among resort guests; there are now nine Beyond the Beach excursions, including culinary and art trips to Todos Santos, volunteer opportunities to aid in the upkeep of a primary school, Panga reef cruises, whale-shark swims and more.

Effective with last week's rebranding to Waldorf Astoria, the resort is now part of the Hilton Honors loyalty program, offering all of its benefits and point-payment options.