After a recent trip to Mexico's Baja Peninsula, Real Weddings Editor Shira Savada has some great ideas for hosting celebrations—everything from your bachelorette party straight through to the wedding—there. Read on to find out why going south of the border could be just the thing for your fiesta, or for a perfectly charming getaway.
Chileno Bay Resort & Residences
Opened in February 2017, Chileno Bay Resort & Residences, above, is a brand-new Auberge Resort in San Jose del Cabo that's super luxe and so relaxing. Since it's located on one of the few swimmable beaches in Cabo, you can try out fun water activities, like the floating bike I took a spin on, or just kick back and relax by the three-tiered zero-edge pool. The friendly staff swung by with a refreshing juice-of-the-day and a chili powder-flecked pineapple skewer, the perfect snack before indulging in a signature margarita at the poolside café, TnT (short for tacos and tequilas, naturally). Lined with volcanic salt, the drink packed a punch and instantly put me in vacation mode. When it's time to head back to your room—a modern, massive space sporting an outdoor shower and a bathtub I want in my future life—it will be hard to imagine ever leaving your indoor/outdoor oasis. But alas, freshen up, rest a bit, and then head back out. I enjoyed dinner and breakfast at their main restaurant, Comal, where the views are abundant and the hanging hammock-esque chairs in the lounge are inviting. Also, their morning buffet is not to be missed. With equal parts healthy choices (wheatgrass shots and green juices) and indulgences (local pastries), there's something for everyone.
You can get married here (a full buyout would guarantee an epic event), but I also think a honeymoon or bachelor/bachelorette party would be pretty spectacular at this contemporary spot. Consider renting out one of their multi-room villas for your crew and leave the rest to Chileno Bay!
I first heard the Shamans, a local band, perform while out to dinner with friends. By the time our meal was over we'd made a make-shift dance floor and were having a ball. These three guys were like a coffeehouse cover band with just the right amount of energy. I could see them playing a lively cocktail hour set, or throughout a beachside rehearsal dinner.
Local event planner and designer Elena Damy crafts stunning events in Cabo and beyond. Her full-service company also provides some pretty amazing flowers and ensures your overall event will be totally dreamy, as evidenced by this setup for an intimate dinner. I love how the bamboo and curly willow arch framed the table without obstructing the scenic views.
Other fun things Elena and her team have done? "Floating" tables on platforms built in pools, hanging installations of flower garlands and greenery, rooftop receptions, and so much more.
Down the main drive is Esperanza, another great Auberge resort in Cabo San Lucas. This resort reopened in 2015 after a total overhaul, with colors inspired by the rocky coastline and crystal blue waters. The neutral tones help you get into your zen state pretty fast, and when you step into your room, complete with ocean views and a canopy bed, it's a done deal. Add in the whale sightings you'll be sure to have (binoculars are provided in every room) and it's pretty magical. I visited their four different pools, boldly signed up for a bootcamp session on the beach, and enjoyed the live music they often play at night. To keep up my energy levels, I also indulged at the world-renowned Cocina del Mar restaurant, with terraces situated right above the gulf. For special occasions (like a romantic pre-wedding meal for you and your honey) you can work with the events team to organize a private meal on a platform built over the water that you'll never forget.
While this hotel is another great pick for a bachelor/bachelorette party or honeymoon, if you're planning to keep your guest list intimate then consider a wedding on one of their remarkable terraces or at the edge of their infinity pool, like the above setup by Elena Damy. Don't forget to cue the fireworks at the end of the night.
I love so many of the traditional textiles made in Mexico, but I'm also an '80s kid drawn to all things neon. On a trip to San Jose del Cabo's gallery district, I popped into this tiny boutique of Mexican-made wares and was greeted by a brilliant pop of color throughout. Vibrantly striped beach blankets, totes, and pouches would make for great honeymoon swag or gifts for your bridesmaids. And pom pom garlands would be a fun take-home addition to remind you of your time in sunny Mexico.