A new home in Los Cabos by Brandon Architects blends an Old World feel with a modern aesthetic. It’s in the community of Maraville Los Cabos on the tip of the Baja Peninsula. Better yet, it’s adjacent to Montage Los Cabos, with access to all its amenities. And it has views to die for.

Out front and to the south, the Pacific Ocean stretches endlessly. Behind it, to the north-northwest, lies the tranquility of Santa Maria Bay. The architects smartly elevated, rotated, and curated the home to take advantage of it all.

“It’s not on the water, but a row behind, on the second tier up,” says Ryan McDaniel, partner and principal architect at the Costa Mesa, California–based firm.

Chris Brandon, who opened the office that bears his name in 2009, was savvy enough to check into the Montage Los Cabos so he could watch ongoing construction details for his clients. “They were private and had concerns about views from the Montage,” he says. “That’s one reason we did the architecture the way we did.”

An entry archway provides privacy from the street, while a central courtyard opens up views above. “Neighbors or friends come through that archway,” McDaniel says. “We used pocket doors and window walls to maximize views and connect the indoor and outdoor living and entertaining areas. 

The home is 12,600 square feet of air-conditioned space three stories with garage, plus two levels above and a roof deck. There are eight bedrooms and 13 baths. The clients, a family from Dallas, have five grown children, plus grandchildren. It’s a vacation retreat and a legacy property they use for family gatherings.

“There are different wings so the kids can bring their kids,” McDaniel says. “There are three bunkrooms, five junior suites, and an adjacent kids’ room, for a multigenerational home, and shared central living spaces with private wings for children and grandchildren.”

Brandon and McDaniel worked closely with Cabo Development Group’s Darin Antin, who served as architect of record and builder for the project. His firm ranges from 125 to 175 employees at any given time, including six full-time architects and four engineers.

“I know what to look for in terms of topography and geometry,” Antin says. “I do my own foundations, structural work, and masonry, and have my own heavy equipment—we’ve got evidence here that we can do any level of work.”

Antin’s a California native who’s been coming to Cabo since his parents, avid sport-fishers and divers, started bringing him here as a child. He’s lived in Cabo now for 30 years as a full-time resident, and working as designer, general contractor, and custom builder. His staff is 100 percent local, including artisans like stonemasons and joiners.

“I have a miller and a finish carpenter,” he says. “All the millwork—every cabinet, all the built-ins, interior doors and woodwork—it’s all done by one guy.”

For this project, Antin’s firm served not only as builder and supplier of Italian windows and Portuguese doors, but also as translators for English into Spanish, plus feet and inches into metrics—and as the go-to source for working through local rules and regulations.

“They dovetailed with us for codes, permitting, and construction documents,” Brandon says. “They were a great team of engineers and architects who picked up the ball where we left off.”

Inside, interior designer and Dream Home Makeover star Shea McGee of Salt Lake City’s Studio McGee wanted to create an atmosphere of luxurious beachfront living with indoor/outdoor elements. She took note of the windows and their stunning views throughout the house.

“Showcasing them was an integral part of the design process in every room,” she says. “We wanted as many windows as possible, as well as carving out areas where the indoors could meld with the outdoors.”

She saw the architects’ nods to the local vernacular, like arched doors in primary bedrooms and hand-painted tiles. “The traditional Spanish design influenced the furnishings we brought in, as well as the color palette,” she says. “We used local plaster artisans for the walls and sourced local wood for a few handmade pieces.”

And she added elements of a luxury hotel to the home as well. The clients wanted a house they could entertain in, for hosting friends and family in Mexico for their beach vacations. “One of their requests was to make the bedrooms color-coded so guests could easily find their way around,” she says. “We used the materials and the color palette to make it feel homey and inviting.”

Wood, linen, stone, and leather all meld seamlessly into their surroundings. The home may be coastal, McGee says, but she focused on timeless materials that are of the earth.

And that’s exactly what the architects wanted: a home in the Mexican tradition, but expressed in a contemporary language.