New Mexican paradise is Punta Mita
Whenever you plan a trip to the Pacific Coast of Mexico, names like Puerto Vallarta come up instantaneously. But the new greatest find is Punta Mita, just north of PV.
This time we were determined to check out Punta Mita, that cool secluded place has been under development for the last decade. The location is perfect just 40 minutes north of Puerto Vallarta’s International Airport, nestled in the middle of the tropical jungle on the tip of the Bahia Banderas (Banderas Bay) and with such a few developments in the area you feel like you’re in the middle of nowhere.
About ten years ago Four Seasons Hotels started the development of one of their most luxurious hotels, in a very desolated and protected area, Punta de Mita, and since then, this property has stayed as one of their top five hotels in the world. Visited frequently by celebrities and always listed on Conde Nast Travel Magazine as well as Travel + Leisure as one of the best beach resorts in Mexico and the World.
So, for many reasons this hotel has stayed on my radar for many years and finally had the chance to experience it this last labor Day weekend. Flying from San Francisco is always easier to Puerto Vallarta with many non-stop flights. When I booked the travel I didn’t think much of hurricane season, which in theory is August through October on the Pacific Ocean, but thankfully not even a tropical storm was on the forecast when we traveled.
I was determined to make it a memorable vacation, and indeed it happened. This time, we went a little over our budgets as we wanted to have that luxurious and relaxing getaway. Once we landed in Puerto Vallarta we had a driver from the Four Seasons waiting to pick us up, so in no time we were heading north to the the tip of the Bay. Not without stopping by a convenience store to get a couple of Corona light beers for the road, which are actually made right there in Puerto Vallarta.
After about 40 minutes we entered this lush and tropical road with a massive gate with no sign of the hotel. After going through security and giving out our names the gate opened to a tropical garden paradise awaiting for us, still no sign of the hotel, just perfectly manicured jungle alongside the road and some views of the golf course.
Arrived at the hotel, paradise. Only in Mexico you can enter a completely window-free lobby, indoor/outdoor living at its perfect representation. Greeted at the expansive lobby by staff, with some cold wash clothes to refresh your face followed by a tequila cocktail while sitting at the lobby sofas to process our check-in. So casual, so relaxing, no front-desk process, just sitting, feeling the tropical breeze hitting our faces and admiring the ocean in the distance. Life was good.
In a matter of ten minutes we were ready to go to our guest room, stress level was zero by then. I didn’t remember much of the day as all seemed to far away then, I was relaxed and home for the next five days. The property is so vast that they have golf carts to take you around. So Miguel, our driver, took our luggage and drove us around the entire compound so we could get familiar on how to move around. Finally, we arrived at our guest room. Very large room, with all amenities and style that you can expect from Four Seasons and a large terrace overlooking the Pacific. Time to sit, relax and open a bottle of champagne that the hotel had to welcome us to the room.
For the next five days we didn’t think much about work, home, stress, and all the things that we left behind in San Francisco. It was only about reconnecting with myself, indulging and connecting with nature. The property has more than four restaurants, a few bars, pools, tequila tastings in the afternoon, water activities, yoga, tennis courts, golf course, cooking classes, and more. It really caters for all tastes and lifestyles without much effort.
It was impressive how the staff made everything look just easy, flawless. No problem to get anything you need, always with the best attitude that you can find in Mexico, very friendly people and making your life easy. That’s their motto, just enjoy life. Perfect for me.
For us, it was more about laying down by the ocean, enjoy the tropical and warm sun, jump in the deep-blue crystal water, refresh, walk on the sand, read, listen to music, and nap. Just writing about it makes me feel so relaxed. We did that for a few days and experienced the delicious food at the resort and its many restaurants. It’s obvious I don’t have to mention that seafood is so fresh and amazingly cooked. The days were long and hot, followed by nights with perfect sunsets and a very tropical breeze that soon would bring big thunderstorms at night to make you sleep with the sound of rain. Just perfection.
There are some nearby towns to explore, we didn’t do much but for sure we’d like to do more next time. Some of the towns to visit are just a car ride away. Try visiting Sayulita, which is very well-known by surfers all over the world. We visited at night and had dinner and drinks there. It’s a very authentic Mexican town, colorful and lively, with great beaches and good. Also, the main town Punta de Mita and San Francisco (not in U.S.) are charming towns.
Interesting fact is that the area was named Punta de Mita by the Spanish conquistadores when they settled here, building a fort on the top of the highest hill to oversee potential boats coming to shore to attack them. They picked the best location to overlook the entire Banderas Bay and since then it was named “Punta De Mita”, now known as Punta Mita.
So, if the Spanish conquistadores got it right, also did Four Seasons. The location is perfect, almost untouched by people and being the pioneers to bring a luxury hotel to this area. Now, other hotels have opened here, including the St. Regis Hotel and W Hotel but it’s not crowded or populated like the south towns of the Bay are.
It was as short trip for us, and it felt like we were in paradise for more than a week. That’s how you’ll feel after visiting this amazing spot in Mexico. Mix luxury and the Mexican way to setup amazing vacation resorts and you’ll get this. Just for this, it’s now our favorite spot in Mexico.
So What’s Next? Going back to Bahia Banderas, going back to Punta Mita and enjoy life. Gracias Mexico.