Hotels, especially boutique hotels, have had a thing for interesting, provocative and unusual art for quite some time now. Indeed, it’s almost unusual for hotels to not have some sort of art programme in their properties. (Hmm…a hotel without art could actually be a piece of art itself.)

But as with all trends, hotel art programmes have started to look rather routine, and in some cases, uninspired. (Buy artwork from a local artist, hang it in the lobby and/or rooms, repeat.) Which is why we’re loving Hotel El Ganzo’s radical and ever-evolving approach to their curated art programme.


Located at Marina Puerto Los Cabos in the San Jose del Cabo, a quieter and chiller section of the touristy Cabos region, El Ganzo is a 69-room boutique hotel that first opened in late 2013 and immediately won the hearts of indie travellers, thanks in part to their clever recording studio, which is under the lobby and accessible by a nifty trapdoor. But Hurricane Odile had its way with the resort, and so many others in the Cabos area, in 2014. It took a year to get the hotel back in boutique form, but just like before, art and music have remained two of their top priorities.

Nearly every month, El Ganzo invites a recording artist to spend five days at the property, record a few songs in the recording studio and then finish off their stay with a special private concert on the hotel’s rooftop (this week’s artist is singer-songwriter Brett Dennen. #swoon.)

But El Ganzo also invites artists to physically leave their mark on the property. With the artist-in-residence programme, painters and sculptors are literally given carte blanche, in the form of the white walls on the back of El Ganzo and in the hallways, to create art inspired by the property but which also fits the creative, bohemian vibe that El Ganzo gives off. The artists chosen to work at El Ganzo are a mix of established and up-and-coming artists from various regions, largely Mexico and South America. Below is Mexican artist, Saner, at work on the rooftop.


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And since El Ganzo very much wants to remain a living museum, they let the artists leave another personal mark on the room number sign outside their room. That way future guests will know which artist stayed in their room before them. Love it.

Rates at El Ganzo start around $300 a night. Sorry, you can’t buy the art off the walls.

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[Top, bottom and Stormtrooper photos: Juliana Shallcross; All others courtesy of El Ganzo]


Juliana Shallcross
A self-confessed hotel addict, Juliana Shallcross has been reporting on hotels around the world for more than a decade. She was previously the managing editor A good portion of her job involves sleeping in new hotels, obsessing over technology and keeping tabs on the ever-changing hospitality landscape. She's based in Los Angeles.