Culture / Travel

This New, Top-Tier Resort is a Must for Cabo Regulars

Zadún, a Rare Ritz-Carlton Reserve Property, Offers Incredible Cuisine and Immersive Views

BY // 12.01.22

Tucked in desert dunes along the coastline of San José del Cabo, Mexico, Zadún, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve is a haven for relaxation and luxury. Opened in 2019, the resort overlooks the bright blue Sea of Cortes and is part of the Ritz’s ultra-luxury Reserve portfolio, which represents the highest tier of the already top-tier luxury brand. In fact, Zadún is one of only five Ritz-Carlton Reserves in the world (others are located in Bali, Thailand, Japan, and Puerto Rico), so expectations are understandably high.

And they were very much surpassed. The hospitality, award-winning design by ABAX Arquitectos, and incredible cuisine were just a few of the highlights of Zadún. Here’s a deep dive into the stunning experience.

 

Zadun Arival Pavillion
At arrival, guests are greeted at Zadún with “La Cabeza” made by sculpture artist Arturo Berned.

Welcome to Zadún

When you drive up the winding roads to the property, you’ll feel serenely secluded from the rest of Los Cabos. An enormous corten steel sculpture called “La Cabeza” (by artist Arturo Berned) greets visitors at the entrance. We were then introduced to our Tosoani (“dream watcher”) or private attendant. After receiving a delicious hibiscus-flavored welcome cocktail, he showed us to our room via golf cart.

After our Tosoani gave us his phone number to text for anything we may need, he told us that he had already scheduled a golf cart to take us to dinner that night. With the high elevation of some of the villas (including ours), these rides were a savior. Any time we were finishing up at one of the restaurants, we were immediately asked if we wanted a golf cart to transport us.

 

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Zadun Cabo
A king room at Zadún, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve offers ocean views and lots of space.

Zadún’s Luxurious Accommodations

From rooms to suites and villas, there are several options for your stay. We stayed in a 750-square-foot oceanview room with a plunge pool — which is very convenient if you don’t want to walk all the way to the pool to take a dip. The terrace is also furnished with a lounge bed, sofas, a table, and chairs. The bathroom features an oversized soaking tub and a rainforest walk-in shower. Amenities are provided by Spa Alkemia (the on-site spa), while beach hats, slippers, and robes are available to borrow.

If you’re looking to bring the entire family, the Cortés Suites or two-bedroom suites offer more space. And if you have a group of up to six people, the Grand Reserve Villa is as grand as it gets. At 5,930 square feet, this option includes several pools, two bedrooms and bathrooms, a kitchen, a living room, and a small fitness room.

 

Zadun Pool to Sea Morning2560
Zadun’s main pool overlooks the ocean in in San José Del Cabo

Zadun’s Stunning Pools and Beach Access

Zadún offers direct access to the beach, along with some lounge chairs and umbrellas. But if you’re not looking to get in the sand (the water is typically too rough to swim in), the two main pools overlooking the ocean are the place to be. There’s also a pool in the 30,000-square-foot spa if you want to take a swim after a massage or Savasana Sound Bath. Speaking of Spa Alkemia…

 

Zadún Ritz Reserve Review
The Spa Alkemia Pool was a highlight of the Zadun experience.

Spa Alkemia

The 60-minute massage I experienced at Spa Alkemia was the highlight of my trip. It began with a foot exfoliating bath and ended with some fun ice-cold stones rubbed around my eyes to relieve puffiness. Afterward, we took a dip in the Spa’s hydrotherapy pool. Water is seen as a healer at Zadun, used to promote circulation and soothe aching muscles. This pool (warmer than a normal swimming pool) comes equipped with a hot tub and several massaging jets and water features.

In addition to massages, the spa also offers sound healing experiences in the Savasana Room, facials, manicures, pedicures, hair styling, make-up, and so much more.

 

Zadun el Barrio seating Frida Mural v1
El Barrio at Zadún, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve offers al fresco dining with stunning views.

Food and Cocktails at Zadun

Zadún has three restaurants on-site — all with the ability to dine al fresco. Each day we ate breakfast and lunch at El Barrio (or ordered room service from), the open-air Mexican restaurant led by Executive Chef Rodrigo Torres and Director of Food & Beverage José María Fernandez. The outdoor space is colorful with prime views of the main pool and ocean. For breakfast, favorite bites included avocado tartine, almond croissant, and chilaquiles. At lunchtime, you’ll find a raw bar, tacos, quesadillas, and sandwiches.

One evening we opted for La Taqueria at El Barrio — the restaurant’s street taco experience that takes place from Friday to Tuesday evenings. There are many kinds of tacos and margaritas to choose from while you watch someone make fresh tortillas by hand. There’s also live music.

Zadún Ritz Carlton Reserve Cabo
Equis is a beachside seafood restaurant at Zadún.

Another night we dined at The Fish Market at Equis. This experience (which takes place three nights a week) showcases local fisherman’s catch of the day. Situated right above the beach, we dined on lobster arancini, Acapulco cocktail, and braised short rib with asparagus and potatoes. Paired with the frozen Mango Rivera, it was a delightful beachside meal.

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Humo is an upscale South American restaurant at Zadun.

Lastly, Humo was the stunner of our dining experience at Zadún. Led by Argentinian chef Lucas López, this upscale South American restaurant is a must-try when in Cabo. When dining at Humo, you must start with the bread — it comes with a unique bone marrow butter. The oysters are also a must-try starter. Opt for the tempura with ponzu gel and spicy avocado mousse. The Nekkei Ceviche was probably my favorite dish of all with tuna, tamarind sauce, and leche de tigre, but the beef empanadas were a close second. The Cast Iron Rice is a must-order for seafood lovers and the rib eye cap is perfect for meat lovers.

 

Zadun Cabo
The agave tasting at Zadún is a fun and interesting way to learn about different agave liquors.

Zadún Experiences in Cabo

One afternoon, we attended a private agave tasting at Candil, the bar located in the resort’s most memorable lantern-like building. We tried everything from mezcal to pox and learned about where each was produced. Afterward, we enjoyed some mezcal and sotol cocktails on the patio overlooking the entire property. The tequila-based More-rita, El Ultimo Agave mezcal drink, and Curado (with nanche and aquafaba) were a few favorites.

There are so many other experiences to choose from, I wish we had had more time on the property to check them out. For adults, there is stargazing, bird watching, a hike, a history of chocolate, and Mexican Legends learning experience. There are also kid-friendly and family options like learning about ocean life, outer space, and more through the Ambassadors of the Environment program.

And if you’re a golfer, there is a beautiful 27-hole course nearby that guests can use.

 

Zadún Ritz Carlton Reserve Cabo
Spa Alkemia boasts a hydrotherapy pool.

Final Thoughts on Zandun, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve

Zadún is truly a serene and luxurious experience like no other. Our Tosoani was always friendly, helpful, and speedy no matter how many other guests he was assisting. The food (especially at Humo) is something I am still thinking about. But it was the incredible views and kindness that everyone who worked on the property offered that made our stay at Zadún most memorable.

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