“Welcome to Hotel El Ganzo!!
We regret to inform you that we are expecting a tropical storm called Norma that is forecasted to become a category one hurricane during the night of Saturday, September 16th.
Hotel El Ganzo does not have a hurricane shelter, however we have made arrangements with a hotel nearby to receive you so that you have access to a certified shelter.
We will be sending updates to your room about the upcoming storm as soon as we receive them, as well as any official notification from the local government.
So this was the email we received from the client the night before our flights. What was supposed to be virtual reality video project entitled “A Perfect Day at El Ganzo" was quickly turning into "A Perfect Storm at El Ganzo”.
The frustrating part on their end was that they spent the better part of the week before cleaning up from the previous storm, preparing for our arrival to have the resort camera ready (and remember…in 360 video, the camera sees everything!).
The frustrating part on our end was that that was the day we were supposed to fly out, and Norma was upgraded to a hurricane mere hours before our flights were scheduled to go. As we intently watched and wondered and refreshed our Weather Underground reports, it came down to making a last minute executive decision to cancel our flights and re-book for a few days later. After consulting with the client and the hotel, we ultimately figured that’s the best idea. We were able to get some of our rental equipment re-routed and scheduled, and crossed our fingers hoping for the best.
While we sat at the airport 72 hours later, we received yet another email: “We cannot guarantee that all the services will be available during your stay. We might have power outages and the access to town may be interrupted."
Considering this was a video production, that could, well…eh…pose a bit of an issue.
The result? One glorious week at San Jose del Cabo’s El Ganzo Hotel. El Ganzo sits on the other, quieter, more-civilized side of the Baja peninsula from Cabo San Lucas and it's no ordinary place. Not only have artists like Thievery Corporation and Telefunkt recorded in their underground recording studio, but they have an artist-in-residence program in which they invite artists of different disciplines (including NBA star Desmond Mason...who knew!?) to stay in the rooms and decorate them however they please. Needless to say, we ran into some pretty unique stuffs!!
In the two virtual reality 360 videos we produced, you’ll be treated to “A Perfect Day At El Ganzo” hosted by our one and only Joan Jetsetter, and an exclusive “El Ganzo Art Tour,” which, for the first time, allows the public into the rooms to see some of the art that is normally reserved only for those staying in those rooms. Make sure to use your Google Cardboard viewer, Samsung Gear VR, Google Daydream viewer, Oculus Rift or HTC Vive for the best experience. While the 360 videos are fun to drag around on your browser or phone, it’s MUCH more fun to actually be there…
Ultimately, luck was on our side, as the storm ended the day before we flew in, and the next one began precisely as we were sitting at the airport waiting for our flights back home. You’d never guess that our trip was bookended, literally to the day, by a hurricane and tropical storm.
It’s also worth noting, our production was during the off-season in order to be able to have much of the hotel to ourselves as we shot the films, so don’t expect the same when you book your trip to El Ganzo.
If you’d like to see all the images we shot as well, check out this post from one of our producers and photographers Wasim Muklashy. And if you want to read more about the hotel, it’s history, and it’s commitment to sustainability, check out this article he wrote for Palisades Magazine as well.
Finally…BOOK YOUR STAY at Hotel El Ganzo! This place is the most unique property we’ve ever had the pleasure of visiting. And we’re quite certain it’ll be yours too.