The Secret Retreat for the World’s Top Tech Billionaires
Located on a private peninsula surrounded by white sand beaches, Punta Mita is a spectacular 1,500-acre resort and residential community bordered by the Pacific Ocean, and an easy 40 minute drive north of Puerto Vallarta.
I was excited to explore some of the greatest villas and developments that have become vacation homes to the wealthiest extended families, and to a handful of tech billionaires.
This area is so private that even locals aren’t aware of their famous neighbors including executives from Apple, Siebel Systems, Yahoo, Amazon, Qualcom, and British Telecom, as well as one very high profile landowner, and one of the richest men on the planet. In 2014, Microsoft billionaire Bill Gates, along with his Cascade Investment group, bought 48 acres of beachfront property along with the Four Seasons Hotel site in Punta Mita.
Once a sleepy bohemian surf area with charming small towns, this stretch on the Riviera Nayarit has become one of the most private and secure locations in the world. Before I could even arrive to my beach villa, we had to pass through multiple security checkpoints and gated roads. Punta Mita was created 15 years ago when the Mexican development company DINE bought property to create a luxury resort with high end hotels and world ranking golf courses. I spoke with André Rossetto, the Managing Director of Resorts Development for DINE and he explained the appeal of the area to buyers from the U.S.
“The very affluent are drawn to Punta Mita because we offer something that can’t be found elsewhere in the world” he said, “A master planned community like Punta Mita would be extremely difficult to duplicate in today´s financial climate, and geographically, Punta Mita is stunningly unique.
There is great confidence in the forecast of Mexico’s long term economy and the strength of our country’s relationship within the Americas. Accessibility is another factor. We have an excellent private terminal nearby for our owners who arrive on their own jet or chartered plane.”
The DINE-developed master planned community has seen property and land values appreciate much due to the recent resort sales at Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita and the St. Regis Punta Mita Resort…each valued at over $1 million USD per hotel room.
I asked Rossetto why the area attracts so many tech leaders as property owners, “Accessibility is key, with most major airlines offering non-stop direct flights” he said. “Some homeowners who own tech companies in the Bay Area have joked that it is often quicker and easier to get to Punta Mita than driving to Lake Tahoe for weekend getaways with the family.
It also provides the perfect escape to completely unplug and take a digital detox, if owners choose. Even during high season in Punta Mita, one can venture around in a golf cart and pass practically no one on the drive – it’s that private and remote.”
One of Rossetto’s favorite spots in Punta Mita is the new Kupuri Beach Club, located on the North side of the peninsula on the Litibu Bay. It has become the quintessential soft sand beach retreat.
He is also most proud of the spectacular estates for sale in the area.
“While we have a number of multi-million dollar residences and lots for sale in Punta Mita, the one I’m most proud of has nothing to do with the price tag” he admits. “The Four Seasons Private Villas is my favorite offering because it was the first marker of success for the development.
It was the first DINE built and developed community that was part of the acclaimed Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita, with 54 private villas which sold with tremendous success. To date, we have only one residence remaining in that community, priced at $3.2 million. Once sold, we’ll be proud to record over $165 million in total sales for the Four Seasons Private Villas.”
I asked about what new developments are on the horizon and what Bill Gates plans with his massive property holding. “The Las Solana (Bill Gates´) property is a gem, and although plans have not yet been announced, we are looking forward to seeing what the future holds” he said, “Two developments on the horizon for Punta Mita are the exclusive Porta Fortuna ocean-front residences starting at $3 million…
The future of Punta Mita looks very bright with several high-profile resorts being planned, and a splashy new multi-million dollar renovation to the Four Seasons Hotel with new redesigned suites and spa. I am sure Bill Gates also has a few surprises up his sleeve for this majestic and exquisite corner of the world.