World News

Luxury resort shutters in Mexico’s Baja California after mysterious deaths of 2 Americans

A luxury resort in Mexico owned by Hyatt has shuttered its doors after an American couple was found dead in their room earlier this month.

The bodies of John Heathco, 41, and Abby Lutz, 28, were discovered by housekeepers on June 13 at the Rancho Pescadero hotel in El Pescadero, which is on the Baja California peninsula, according to KABC.

Autopsies of the couple revealed that they died of “intoxication by an undetermined substance,” according to prosecutors in Mexico’s Baja California Sur state, and local law enforcement suspected that the two were killed by inhaling toxic gas, according to The Associated Press.

Prosecutors maintained that Heathco and Lutz had been dead for 11 or 12 hours before their bodies were discovered. Paramedics who responded to the scene said the two were dead when they got there.


Photos of John Heathco and Abby Lutz

The bodies of Abby Lutz, 28, and John Heathco, 41, were discovered by housekeepers on June 13 at the Rancho Pescadero hotel in El Pescadero, which is on the Baja California peninsula. (R: L: Facebook)

Gabrielle Slate, Lutz’s stepsister, started a GoFundMe to offset Lutz’s funeral costs and claimed the couple had complained of food poisoning before they died. Slate said the family later “received a phone call saying that they had passed away peacefully in their hotel room in their sleep,” and were told “it was due to improper venting of the resort and could be carbon monoxide poisoning.”

An employee who spoke to KABC confirmed that the hotel closed on June 18, with a spokesperson for Hyatt saying that the hotel is conducting an “extensive independent investigation of the incident, led by a third party,” and will not open again until the investigation is concluded.


Baja California

An aerial view of a storm approaching Bahia Concepcion in Mexico’s Baja California state in July 2021. The region of Mexico is a popular destination for tourists. (Photo by GUILLERMO ARIAS/AFP via Getty Images)

“On behalf of the entire Rancho Pescadero team, we are deeply saddened by this tragedy and committed to caring for all those affected with understanding and compassion,” the spokesperson told KABC. “The hotel promptly decided to suspend normal operations. While we wait for authorities to release their findings, together with the hotel’s owners, Hyatt is conducting an extensive independent investigation of the incident, led by a third party.

“Our top priority is the safety and wellbeing of guests and colleagues and the property will not resume normal operations until our investigation is complete. Local authorities have not yet released the findings of their ongoing investigation, which Hyatt and the hotel’s owners continue to fully cooperate with,” the spokesperson added.

Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

Cabo San Lucas is a resort town on the southernmost tip of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times)

Fox News Digital has reached out to the Rancho Pescadero hotel for comment.


The deaths come after three American tourists were found dead in a Mexico City Airbnb last October, in what authorities said was most likely a case of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Fox News’ Greg Norman contributed to this report.

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