The Colors of San Jose del Cabo
Patricia Gray Inc is an award winning Interior Design firm in Vancouver, Canada who blogs about WHAT'S HOT in the world of Interior Design.
2010 © Patricia Gray | Interior Design Blog™
"Come! I am tasting the stars!"
--Attributed by legend to Dom Pérignon (1638-1714)
I had my first wine spa massage today – it is the hottest new trend in the spa industry. Grapes, grape seeds and grape vines contain some of the nature’s most powerful antioxidants. The French have known the rejuvenation properties of grapes for centuries, and recent studies are showing that the French suffer less heart disease due to a regular intake which confirms that wine not only tastes good - it’s good for you on the inside, and now on the outside.
To start off the wine spa massage treatment you arrive 45 – 60 minutes before your appointment for your ‘guided relaxation sequence’: 10 minutes in the steam room or sauna relaxation; pressurized rain shower cooling-off and rinsing; 10 minute Jacuzzi immersion; cold plunge immersion for blood pressure stabilizing; 15 minutes in the relaxation lounge. The “La Vin” Massage is a personalized anti-stress massage using the unique therapy of Chardonnay oil containing antioxidant grape seed extract oil. The Merlot massage claims to treat sunburn and extreme dehydrated skin. After the wine spa massage I was escorted to the relaxation lounge where the Wine Spa Sommelier had designed the perfect pairing between “Haute Signature” canapés, and a perfect glass of wine from Valle de Guadalupe.
Wine Spa Therapy Relaxation Lounge / Wine Spa Therapy Facility
Yesterday I set off to visit the legendary Hotel California in Todos Santos, Mexico. The Eagles made this song famous in the 70’s|(listen to it here on YouTube as performed at the 2007 Grammys.) According to the locals - Todos Santos was a town that the Vietnam draft dodgers escaped to in the late 60’s. When communicating with home they would discreetly say they were staying at ‘The Hotel California’, hence the words of the song:
“We are all just prisoners here
Of our own device……
You can check out any time you like
But you can never leave……”
The drive to Todos Santos from my Hotel (on the Los Cabos Beach corridor) is approximately 1 hour, on the two lane Highway 19. I bravely rented a car for the day and set off on my adventure only to get lost before I left Cabo San Lucas. It turned to to be an interesting diversion, as I got to see the area of town where the locals live, which I might not have seen otherwise. Back on Highway 19, which is undergoing construction, the speed limit is posted at 60 km per hour or 80 km per hour. I soon found out that was only a ‘suggested’ speed limit, as I had huge semi transport trucks right on my bumper and passing me on this narrow highway on a solid yellow line. Once I sped up to the going speed of 110 – 120 kms per hour I fit in nicely.
There were two stops that my Mexican Personal Assistant told me that I had to stop at: Art & Beer for their famous drinks & decor, and Miguel’s for authentic Mexican food. Visiting the Hotel California was the anti-climax of the trip as it was very touristy, but the Pina Colada and appetizers at Art and Beer, and the Chili Reno at Miguel’s were unforgettable.
The bartender at Art and Beer making his famous Clamato drink (above.) It has 17 ingredients and could constitute a entire meal. These are the ingredients, if you want to give it a try: Tomato juice, orange juice, worchester sauce, soya sauce, lime juice, hot sauce. wasabi, dijon, horseradish, oyster sauce, small scallops, clams, cracked shrimp, celery, celery salt, Vodka, ice.
The Pina Colada was served in a pre-frozen half pineapple, with appetizers of fresh clams on the half shell, and a separate plate of baby squid and the smallest, tenderest scallops – both were topped with Mexican hot sauce. In Mexico when you order a drink you automatically get something to eat with your drink. This time I got a full meal with my Pina Colada. The seafood was fresh caught locally that morning.
My final stop of the day before heading back was at Miguel’s Restaurant in Todos Santos to try one of his acclaimed Chili Reno’s. Miguel and his wife started their restaurant 9 years ago with two tables and it has grown into a renowned establishment with recent press in the NY Times and LA Times. The food is authentic Mexican – Miguel’s two sisters and aunt were cooking in the kitchen, and I was lucky to get to see my Chili Rellenos prepared. The decor is traditional with dirt floors and typical thatched roof.
Miguel's Chili Relleno
Fry the green chilies in a fry pan to brown the skins to make them easy to remove. Discard the seeds and pulp inside. Dip the chilies into boiling water (to remove the hotness). Stuff with cheese. Beat up an egg white and dip the chili into and then coat with fine bread crumbs, fry until golden brown and the cheese inside melts. Serve with rice and brown beans.
Warning: Depending where you are when you are reading this, you might feel a tinge of envy, but let me preface this post by saying that this vacation is just what I am needing to recharge and ‘smooth my feathers’... I am sitting on a beautiful sunny beach in Los Cabos, Baja Mexico sipping a Margarita and eating a pizza with Mexican hot sauce ....two weeks of bliss….with lots of time to waste away in Margaritaville. The resort I am staying at is situated on a magnificent private coral beach with 6 swimming pool, 3 restaurants, and a world famous Wine Therapy Spa with treatments called vinotherapy (more on that in another post.) I arrived late Sunday, and on Monday I did not leave the pool deck. I was totally mesmerized by the warm ocean breeze, the sound of the surf, and the reflections in the infinity pool.
This iguana has a good thing going. He slinks under the deck chairs and waits in prey for any unattended food that he can pilfer. The first time I noticed him (or may it is a ‘her’) he had a slice of tomato in his mouth, bigger than the size of his head, and was scurrying across the pool deck back to the safety of his rock to devour it. It quite shocked me the first time I saw him, but over the course of a few days the more I saw him the more familiar he became.
The resort is at the bottom of a high outcropping of rock. Walking back to my room these are some of the view corridors to the ocean. My favourite time of day is in the late afternoon, when the sun is lower in the sky and casts dramatic shadows.
One of the restaurants is situated on the edge of the ocean and is lit entirely by candle light where Chef Gerardo Rivera reigns supreme. The service staff bring flashlights to look at the menu. For my main course I had the most delectable local Sea Bass firewood cooked with tomato chunks, lemon grass and cilantro accompanied by a glass of Chateau Camou, El Gran Divino”, (Late Harvest). For dessert I waited patiently for the 20 minute cooking time for the Chocolate Bomba scented with Cardamom and Bitter Chocolate, which was baked in a wood oven. In Spanish - Bomba de chocolat amargo y cardomomo.