The Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita has an enviable location, nestled on Banderas Bay about an hour north of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. It’s not the first place that springs to mind when you’re considering a golf trip—in Mexico, that will always be Cabo San Lucas—but those searching for a getaway with a little golf thrown in will find that this upscale property checks all the boxes.
There are two Jack Nicklaus-designed courses on the property. Pacifico Golf Course, opened in 1999, is the more memorable, if only because of the third hole. Both of them, actually. Hole 3A is a strong par-3 playing across a marsh. Behind it is hole 3B, 194 yards across water to a black-lava island. Named the “Tail of the Whale” because of its distinctive shape, this is (according to a plaque on the tee) “the world’s only natural island green,” and it’s reached by an amphibious cart. Eight of the holes on Pacifico are on the water, but they still offer striking views of the Sierra Madre Mountains.
Bahia Golf Course opened in 2009 and reflects how Nicklaus’s design work improved after his pairing with Tom Doak at Sebonack Golf Club: It actually has interesting green complexes, with more character and movement than Jack traditionally mustered. It might not be the greatest course you’ll ever play, but it is hugely enjoyable.
A top-notch facility with service to match. The beach and spa are superb, the rooms luxurious, and the weather almost perfect year-round. And they feed you well, too. There’s Asian food at Aramara, the beachfront grill at Bahia, or Ketsi, one of famed chef Richard Sandoval’s Mexican spots, with fresh guacamole that’s worth flying here for.
The Spa and Unlimited Golf package at Punta Mita starts at $770 per night in May and includes accommodations, daily breakfast buffet for two, choice of unlimited golf or 80-minute spa treatment per person per day, complimentary practice-range privileges and scheduled golf clinics, and unlimited non-motorized water sports.