Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos Review (Food, Beaches, & Pools) [2020]

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Choosing an all-inclusive resort can be difficult because the quality can vary so widely between resorts. And because you will probably be spending a lot of money, you want to make sure that you pick the right resort.

One respected brand for all-inclusive stays is the Hyatt Ziva.

So on a recent trip to Los Cabos, I was eager to try out the Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos. In this article, I will give you a detailed look at this resort. I also have many sub-articles that you can check out that will give you a more detailed look at some of the facilities like the restaurants and spa.

Related: Tipping in Mexico: How Much to Tip and When to NOT Tip


Booking

We paid for our three night stay with the Chase Sapphire Reserve and earned 3X the points on the purchase. During our stay in July, we paid roughly $500 per night for the suite. 

We received an upgrade from an Ocean View One Bedroom Master Suite to an Ocean Front One Bedroom Master Suite, which I would highly recommend for reasons that I will talk about below. 

The key difference is that the ocean front is directly on the beach while the ocean view just has a view of the beach.

If you want to use points to make your Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos booking, rates start at 20,000 World of Hyatt points per night.


Location

The resort is not located in the heart of the party central known as Cabo San Lucas. Instead, it is found in historical San Jose del Cabo which is much more laid-back. It is a short 10 minute taxi ride from the resort to the city center of San Jose (Plaza Mijares) which I would highly recommend visit to.

If you want to head to San Lucas, it’s about 30 minutes away. 

San Jose del Cabo has a charming old town feel to it due to its Spanish colonial history that dates back to the 1700s. In San Jose del Cabo there are a lot of little shops, galleries, restaurants and other places to check out among the colorful backroads. You really owe it to yourself to checkout this town.

It is also known for the art walk that takes place every Thursday, which unfortunately we were not able to do. 


Arriving

After flying in on American Airlines Main Cabin Extra, we arranged to be picked up from the airport and were transported in a Cadillac Escalade. 

We initially booked a Chevrolet Suburban for $150 roundtrip but were bumped to a Cadillac Escalade, which goes for $230. If you want to stick to a budget you can book a shuttle from the airport for $28 round-trip.

The Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos has a wide driveway that is covered and leaves plenty of room for multiple vehicles. I liked that the entrance was gated and that there was always an attendant there.

We arrived a couple of hours before check in and we were allowed to store our luggage and receive our bracelets while we waited for our rooms to be ready. 

In my experience, it is rare for an all inclusive resort to allow you to check in early because they are usually running at high capacity.

The lobby is pretty huge. On one side there are information desks and on the other side you will find the check-in desks.

There was a separate check-in line for Hyatt elite Members (Explorist and Discoverist) although the main line was not very long. There is also a premium check-in area that you could utilize if you are Hyatt Globalist. 


Resort premises

The Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos is one of the best looking resorts that I have stayed at.

As soon as you make your way through the lobby you will be amazed by the money shot, which looks out over the main pool and out into the deep blue Pacific ocean. For sure you will want to stop and snap a photo as you step through this breezy passageway, 

The premises throughout the resort are beautiful, especially with all of the towering tall palm trees.

The landscaping is well-maintained and you will find many brightly colored flowers lining the clean walkways. 

In the center of the resort you will find a lagoon area that consists of a tranquil cascade of pools that are not made for swimming but more for lounging.

In this area, you will find several platforms with comfy seating and fire pits. You owe it to yourself to spend at least one night hanging out on one of the floating fire pit platforms. 

The area near the Lagoon is also where you might find a pop-up crepe station or some other type of eating station or events like an art walk. 


Beach

The beach here is rough. And I’m not just talking about the sand.

The waves are powerful and the undercurrents are even stronger. This means that you probably will not want to go swimming because it can be so dangerous, especially for people who are not strong swimmers.

So instead of swimming in the ocean, your beach experience will be mostly limited to strolling around on the sand or lying around in a chair or cabana. You might also spend some time admiring the view.

If the idea of reading a book while listening to the waves pounding sounds like a dream to you then this will be your dream destination.

There are some beaches that you can drive out to that are swimmable in the nearby area. For more on the beaches in the area click here.


One bedroom ocean front suite

I really liked our one-bedroom oceanfront suite. I did a detailed review of the room here so I would suggest you check that out if you’re interested but I will summarize how I felt about it below. 

Our suite was very spacious. It had a nice little dining area that had some bubbly and some chocolates waiting for us when we arrived.

There was also a pretty spacious living area that was connected to the balcony. The living area had a comfortable sofa and a large TV. It also came with a small refrigerator that was loaded up with some beer and other beverages.

The bedroom was also extremely spacious as well. It had a sofa that I believe pulled out into a bed and also a large king bed.

It also had a large TV. 

And of course, you can’t forget about the oceanfront view which was just amazing, especially since you could see it from the bed.

And of course the room opened up to the balcony outside which was also very big. I absolutely loved the view looking out to the hills and mountains. 

The bathroom was pretty nice as well. I thought the tub was a little bit on the small side but everything else was pretty nice. 


Dining

When you are staying at an all inclusive resort, obviously the dining is a huge factor. Unfortunately, some all-inclusive resorts are known for their mediocre dining.

However, this resort was pretty solid in the dining department.

Did every meal just blow me away? Of course not.

But did I feel like this all inclusive resort was a step above the other all-inclusive resorts I have visited? Yes.

I have reviewed some of the restaurants in closer detail so in some cases you can find a link to those restaurants below. But I will just give you an overview of my experience.

Before jumping into the reviews one thing you should know. These restaurants do not always open at the times listed on the website. This caused some confusion for us and I think it is one thing the resort needs to work on.

So if you are trying to plan out your day you may need to contact the resort and ask what times the places will be opening and go from there. 

La Plaza (International buffet)

Breakfast buffets are super important to me at all-inclusive resorts. I like to have a lot of variety and different ways to start my day each morning when it comes to what I want to eat. I also want to look forward to breakfast every morning.

I felt that this resort had a great breakfast buffet. As you can tell in my review, there are many different options for you to select.

I like that they had quality traditional American breakfast options like: egg omelettes, bacon, sausage, and even waffles, french toast, etc. 

But I also really enjoyed the Mexican dishes that they had.

The lunch here was also on point.

I would highly recommend that you take advantage of the Mongolian Grill. Seriously it was amazing.

You simply choose your noodles and your proteins and whatever else you want to be cooked up and they will cook it up in a matter of minutes. This was definitely one of the highlights for lunch to me so don’t pass it up.

You can read the detailed review here.

Zaffiro (Italian restaurant)

I really enjoyed Zaffiro. It is located right on the beach and you have amazing views as you dine.

For dinner we tried their Italian breaded fried calamari which came with some tasty lemon and garlic oil. We also tried their pizza, which I thought was pretty good.

Overall, this was one of my favorite places for dinner for sure.

I did visit them for their “hamburger day” but was not super impressed. The hamburger patty just did not taste or feel high quality to me and kind of turned me off, despite how good it looked on the outside.

Coco Loco Snack Bar

Coco Loco Snack Bar is a great place to grab a snack while enjoying the pools. It is located just outside of the main pool area and you can choose from a lot of different types of snack foods like fish tacos, burgers and others. This place won’t disappoint when you have the munchies.

Coffee House

The Coffee House is a nice cozy place to grab some coffee or perhaps some pastries. I felt the quality of some of the pastries were lacking just a little bit but overall it was still a good place to grab a bite to eat to hold you over. You can read the detailed review here.

Deli Cactus (24 hour lounge)

I really loved the 24 hour lounge. It just had a really cool vibe on the inside and I like that there were so many grab and go options like sandwiches.

If you are getting ready to head out on an excursion all day this is a great place to stop by first to grab you a snack on the way out.

DoZo (Asian restaurant)

I really loved the Asian restaurant DoZo and we tried their teppanyaki grill which was amazing.

The chef was one of the best that I think I have ever seen which is saying a lot since I had eaten at a lot of teppanyaki-style grills. You can read the detailed review here.

Bon Vivant (French restaurant)

I felt that that the French restaurant was a little bit overhyped. It wasn’t bad and I tried their chicken Cordon Bleu which I thought was okay but the restaurant seemed to be a little bit overrated if you ask me.

El Cortijo (Spanish restaurant)

I really liked the look and feel of El Cortijo.

The service was great here and we enjoyed some of the different tapas and appetizers that they had to offer. The mojitos were on point and the lamb chops were not bad either.


Bars & Lounges

There are a few bars that you can enjoy at the resort. 

Now here is the thing, I do not drink. So what am I doing reviewing all-inclusive resorts? Well it is a long story but I only bring it up to explain that I didn’t experience the bars from the perspective of someone getting tipsy, buzzed etc.

With that said, the bars and lounges did look pretty cool.

There is a tequila bar which is right behind the lagoons. 

There is also a sports bar, Spirit of 1968, which looks really cool and is full of pool tables and TVs. We visited during the women’s World Cup and the sports bar was pretty lit. So if you are visiting during a major sporting event this would be a great place to watch the game.

There is also a swanky lounge that is connected to the main lobby. 


Pools

There are multiple swimming pools at the resort and I reviewed them in more detail here. 

The main pool is located right in the middle of the resort and it is the first pool that you see when you make your way to the lobby. From the lobby, it is a very impressive view with the pool and in the foreground and the beautiful deep blue Pacific in the background.

It is a wide pool area and it is lined with chairs and you can find some cabanas surrounding the pool. The prices for the cabanas vary based on the location and the size. If you want to find out more about the pricing you can check out the review article I did on the pools.

Then there is the infinity pool which is smaller and closer to the beach. This is also where you can find a couple of the hot tubs.

This was a chill pool and I liked that it had a swim up bar.

The resort also has an adults only pool. I really liked the look of this pool and liked that it was connected to the swim up rooms.

It also had a nice bar area with a cool cactus garden on top. The adults only pool had a much more laid-back vibe as you would probably expect. It also just felt more sleek and the modern which I really liked. My guess is that this pool was added on more recently.

Finally, there is also the water park area. This has extremely shallow water but has a cool slide area for kids to splash around in and have fun.

You can read more about the pools and how to read the cabanas here.


Club lounge

The resort has an exclusive club lounge that is available to those staying in premium rooms and those who have top elite status. It’s a nice little area where you can grab some cold and hot food items and just relax.

The club lounge isn’t quite as valuable at an all inclusive resort because it is offering you a lot of things that you already are getting for free. But in this case you can find more premium liquors if you would like at the club lounge.

It’s a cool little spot and also has a great view of the pool and ocean. You can check out the full review here.


Fitness center

The fitness center is not the nicest fitness center that I have ever seen but it is still pretty good and has a lot of different machines for you to use. 

I thought it was cool that they have this soccer-style pool table.

They also had an outdoor basketball court — something that I have not seen at many hotels.

There is also a tennis court. I’m not sure if you can rent tennis rackets but you could always ask.

I liked that there was an outdoor terrace with lounge chairs and a great view of the pool.

Just check out that view.


Zen Spa

I was not fortunate enough to try out spa treatment but I still did take a full tour of the spa. I have to say that it is one of the most amazing spa facilities I have seen at a hotel. It’s a large two story facility and I think it’s just a beautiful venue. 

I was able to take a peek at some of the massage rooms like the couples massage room. The rooms are spacious and come with showers and some even have tubs, along with a sink area to freshen up. I was just very impressed with how they looked.

I would highly suggest for you to check out my full review of the facility here.


Activities

There is always something going on at the resort. When you check-in, you should be given a schedule of all of the activities to expect during the week. 

There will usually be beach and pool activities going on throughout the day. These vary but some activities that you might find consist of: pool biking, aqua aerobics, beach volleyball, trivia, ping-pong, beach soccer, and foam parties. 

When it comes to the nighttime entertainment they will put on shows, have live music, art walks, and other theater shows. So be sure to always check the latest schedule to see what is going on.


Excursions

The hotel offers a lot of recommended excursions. You can check out the different prices and options below. Just keep in mind that the prices are subject to change.


Service

The service really stood out at this hotel. Each time we walked buy a staff member in the hallway we were always greeted with a smile and a nice gesture. The staff in the restaurants were also extremely attentive and pleasant to deal with. And I never had a bad encounter in the pool area or anywhere else in the hotel.

So overall I would give them five stars out of five.


Final word

Overall, I was very pleased with this all-inclusive resort. It definitely was a step above some of the other all-inclusive resorts that I have stayed at. I liked that there were some quality dining experiences and that the main buffet was very legit.

The hotel is also just a beautiful property and has some great views especially from the higher floors. If you can swing it, I would definitely try to go with an oceanfront room because the views and sounds are simply amazing.

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