Todos Santos (Spanish [to'dos sa'ntos] (help·info)) is a small coastal town at the foothills of the Sierra de la Laguna Mountains, on the Pacific coast side of the Baja California Peninsula, about an hour's drive north of Cabo San Lucas on Highway 19 and an hour's drive southwest from La Paz. Todos Santos is located very near the Tropic of Cancer in the municipality of La Paz. The population was 5,148 at the census of 2010. It is the second-largest town in the municipality.
The mission at what is now Todos Santos, Misión Santa Rosa de las Palmas was founded by father Jaime Bravo in 1723. In 1724 it was renamed Nuestra Señora del Pilar de La Paz. Located across the street to the southwest from the small town plaza, this mission contains the statue of the Virgin of Pilar, which is the focus of 'Todos Santos' main festival in November.
During the Mexican American War the Skirmish of Todos Santos, last battle of the war, was fought near the town on March 30, 1848.
During the 19th century following the secularization of the missions, Todos Santos thrived as the Baja sugarcane capital, supporting eight sugar mills at the end of the 19th Century. Only one existed by the time the town’s freshwater spring dried up in 1950 and that last mill closed in 1965.
Todos Santos faced a bleak future until the spring came back to life in 1981 and the Mexican Government paved Highway 19 in the mid-1980s. The highway brought tourists and the rich farmlands have been revived. The town now prospers from farming vegetables, chilies, avocados, papayas and mangoes; as well as from fishing and ranching.
More recently, there has been a gradual increase in tourist activity and a boom in real estate development. Handicraft shops, owner-operated art galleries featuring landscape paintings of local scenes (some artists from Guadalajara and other parts of Mexico also exhibit works in Todos Santos,) upscale restaurants, boutique hotels and restored colonial buildings have contributed to the gentrification and redevelopment of the town. The Hotel California is a favorite stop here because of the name association with the song made famous by the Eagles, even though the song does not specifically reference this particular hotel, nor any other existing hotel. There a few annual festivals including the Festival de Cine and the Todos Santos Music Festival.
On May 1, 2017, the band The Eagles, filed a lawsuit against the Hotel California in United States District Court for the District of Central California alleging Trademark Infringement in Violation of the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1125 and Common Law Unfair Competition and Trademark Infringement. The Eagles are seeking relief and damages.
Misión Santa Rosa de las Palmas, also known as Todos Santos Mission, was founded by the Roman Catholic Jesuits in 1733. After 1748, the mission was known as Nuestra Señora del Pilar de la Paz. The mission was the first European settlement at the site of what is now the city of Todos Santos, Baja California Sur. The Santa Rosa Mission was located in one of the few areas of Baja California suitable for agriculture. The residents of the Mission were primarily Guaycura Native Americans (American Indians) whom the Jesuits and their successors, the Franciscans and Dominicans, attempted to convert to Christianity and to make into sedentary farm workers. Recurrent epidemics of introduced European diseases reduced the Indian population to only a handful by the 19th century and in 1825 the mission was closed.