A huge thank you to the staff at Lumi Hotel for hosting our stay. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
If you haven’t heard of Valle de Guadalupe by now because of its impressive wine, you may have (like me) heard of it for its unique and unorthodox hotels. Instead of the large resorts and cookie-cutter accommodations most popular destinations inevitably become riddled with, Mexico’s beloved wine country is dotted with charming B&Bs, architecturally experimental suites, and innovative boutique hotels each going out of their way to make a statement. Imagine road tripping through Baja and looking out your window to see rectangular cabins jutting out of the hills on your left, wine barrel-shaped abodes on your right, and shipping containers-turned-chic-suites dotting the area off in the distance. Those unmistakable shipping containers you see? That’s Valle de Guadalupe’s very own Lumi Hotel.
Read on for a closer look at this unique wine country hotel, as well as all the details you need to know when booking your stay!
About an hour south of the Tijuana/San Diego border, and 30 minutes inland from Ensenada, you’ll find Valle de Guadalupe. A region that has flown largely under the radar for the last couple of decades, the Valle is beginning to boom in popularity thanks to the increasing realization that the wine is good. Really, really good. Suddenly, a country previously known only for its tequila, mezcal, and cerveza is popping up in casual conversation compared with the likes of Napa and Tuscany and their ability to produce quality wine grapes in ideal Mediterranean-esque climates. Who would have thought?
With the rise in popularity, several opportunity-grabbing hoteliers have begun to lay foundations in the area. The crowd Valle de Guadalupe attracts is (in my observation) naturally a bit younger, more adventurous, and more laidback than the visitors to other more high-brow wine regions, and this is reflected in the unique and experience-driven accommodations popping up throughout the area.
If you think of the Valle de Guadalupe as a horseshoe, with two main roads from the coast joining up at the tip, or edge, of the Valle, the Lumi Hotel sits pretty much at the center of the region, putting you in a prime position to get everywhere you want to go in 30 minutes or less.
The Lumi Hotel Property
Lumi is particularly unique in that it was born out of a combination of both Mexican and Finnish influence, thanks to the multicultural family that built the hotel. What you will find is distinctly Nordic design – from the clean lines and smooth shapes, to the hygge (tons of extra blankets? Check!), to the minimal color palette. There are 6 container cabins and 1 container ‘lobby’ to tend to guests 24/7 as needed. In addition to the container cabins, you’ll also find glamping tents on the property. Both accommodations are decorated in a similar style, with chic, yet minimal, interior choices meant to make guests feel cozy, comfortable, and calm.
Beyond the container cabins and glamping tents, you’ll find an onsite sauna and jacuzzi for guests. The jacuzzi is open for use whenever you like, but the sauna is by 1-hour appointment only during the day to ensure guests have privacy. In the evening after 9 pm, the sauna opens up on a first-come, first-served basis. A perfect nightcap here includes a 20 minute sauna session, hanging out by the jacuzzi with friends, and drinking locally-made beer from the nearby keg!
There are 3 different layouts you can choose from when picking a container suite. The queen suites are the smallest, and most similar in size to a standard hotel room. The king & queen, and the king suite, are both the same size (a full shipping container), with the only difference being one option having 2 rooms and the other having 1 master and a living room. The rooms are decorated with distinctly Scandinavian flair, and to my surprise, had so much space! Our king suite felt like an entire apartment and was incredibly comfortable.
No matter what layout you choose, each container suite has a rooftop pergola where you can enjoy brisk evenings and warm early mornings. Speaking of morning – Lumi offers complimentary breakfast for guests (you just need to let them know in advance if you want it, and at what time, because they order the exact quantity of ingredients they need every morning) delivered straight to your room or rooftop. Fresh locally baked bread, yogurt, fruit, jam, butter, and honey served up with coffee and orange juice straight to your door – yes please!! The bread is to die for, and you can’t leave without trying it at least once.
Tips to Know Before You Go
1. DRIVING: The roads leading to most places in Valle de Guadalupe are bumpy, windy dirt roads. Plan accordingly with your transportation if driving or renting a car! If you will be taking a vehicle to Mexico, you’ll need Mexican auto insurance. Read all my tips for driving to Baja here.
2. TRANSPORTATION: Uber supposedly has a service that provides transportation around the Valle (originating in Tijuana and Ensenada), but if you’re requesting an Uber while already in the Valle, your odds will be slim. Instead, the hotel staff will be able to recommend a driver for you for $50 – $100 USD, depending on the length of time you want to spend visiting wineries.
3. LOCATION: Don’t be fooled by the parts of Valle de Guadalupe (like where this hotel is located) that look empty. To my surprise, even the emptier pockets of the Valle contained some of the most impressive wineries and eateries, like Don Tomas Viñedo, which is Lumi’s neighbor vineyard and restaurant. Tip: Order their carne asada tacos along with your wine tasting. Arguably some of the BEST carne asada tacos I’ve ever eaten.
4; ADD-ON AMENITIES: Lumi prides itself on being pet- and family-friendly. If you plan on traveling with a dog or with children, the staff at Lumi will give you everything you need to make them just as comfortable as you. I’m talking dog beds, dog toys, fences… cribs, high chairs, childproof outlet covers. Because the hotel is family-owned, they have really thought of everything when it comes to making sure their guests can relax.
5. WHAT TO DO AT THE HOTEL: Book a mobile massage and get a full spa treatment without even needing to leave the hotel. Valle Mobile Massage offers massages anywhere in the Valle de Guadalupe area. The Lumi Hotel’s rooftop pergolas make for a perfect setting to get an hour deep tissue and a facial before sunset!
Ready to pack your bags? Book your stay at the Lumi Hotel in Valle de Guadalupe here.
Book Activities In or Near This Hotel Here:
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