La Playita, Still A Sleepy Fishing Village

Even though it’s been invaded by Gringos, it sucks it up and maintains its dignity
BY: EDGAR GONZALEZ

La Playita is a small fisherman's village right next to San Jose del Cabo, And it's the place in which a great part of the zone's economic growth is coming from.

There are people who have come to San Jose and never visited or even known about La Playita which is right next door. Why is it interesting? well for starters it is where the marina is. What? there is a marina in San Jose? You thought the marina was in Cabo San Lucas. The main and world famous marina of Cabo San Lucas is still there, but in 2004 the Puerto Los Cabos project started to build a new marina in La Playita and it's been a work in progress ever since. It's current size is 200 slips and accommodates up to 250 foot mega yachts so it's kind of a big deal. The marina is unique in its beauty, surrounded by stone sculptures by world renowned artists like Leonora Carrington. This marina has first-world services like a full service boat repair and dry stack storage with capacity of up to 100 boats.

Puerto Los Cabos is the biggest and most ambitious real estate development in all of Los Cabos. When President Fox swung by to toss the first shovel full of dirt, he said that at $600 million, it was the biggest development in all of Mexico. It is primarily a residential development on 2,000 acres, with luxury homes built alongside two  golf courses designed by Jack Nicklaus and Greg Norman. A new Caesars Hotel is coming. Puerto los Cabos also has luxury resorts built on its property including Secrets and the almost ready Ritz Carlton Reserve. There is a JW Marriott. And for those with more intimate tastes there are boutique hotels like El Ganzo and the Marina Inn.

Eduardo Sanchez Navarro is the man behind all this, and is CEO of Grupo Questro.

La Playita also has a garden called Wirikuta. It started out as the nursery to hold the plants that were uprooted to build out the marina. There are now more than 1,500 types of desert plants from all over the world. This marvel was designed by Josef Schrott an Austrian botanist that inspired it's design in the Huichol indigenousness culture.

There are a variety of restaurants in La Playita, ranging from the high end resort based restaurants all the way to the hole in the walls that have the local style going back generations. Also, a few good marina side cantinas.

And since this is a fishing town, it's a given that there are an assortment of fishing excursions available, along with a palapa fish cleaning station. Good deals on fresh fish every afternoon. There is a dolphin pen inside the marina, space shared by the boats. 

La Playita is part of the Los Cabos municipality, and is under the rule of the Los Cabos mayor, so it is and it isn’t its own entity.

You'll know you are there when you see a huge cross on top of the hill, which you can't miss. This is a sculpture designed by Gabriel Macotela, a Mexico City artist,  it's 82 feet high and made of steel. It was assembled here onsite to his specifications from a picture he drew. No kidding, I saw the picture. You can climb this hill and take great pictures of the marina and yourself at the foot of the cross. Sometimes the chain across the road isn’t up and you can drive up there. When the chain is broken again, it’s a pretty busy loves’ lane. There was supposed to be a restaurant built up there, but that went by the wayside.

When visiting Cabo, make time to visit La Playita. At the traffic circle on the main downtown drag, go east, across the bridge. Boom! You’re there. The bridge in itself is a pretty funny story. It looks like it’s 100 years old but it’s les than 20 because nobody is taking care of it. The city wouldn’t build a bridge across the arroyo for the $600 million development so Sanchez Navarro sent his men out there to hammer it together. Oops he forget to get permits so the project was shut down while they haggled. Now it seems the city won’t even take care of it. You gotta wonder how a man with the vision of Sanchez Navarro endures the government that puts up road blocks to development. And why does the government do that? Just for the hell of it, it seems.