Puerta Cortés, La Paz, Mexico

Journey to La Paz, Mexico, to play a Gary Player-designed course with breathtaking views and alluring amenities to enjoy on and off the green

In Mexico’s Baja Peninsula, Cabo San Lucas is commonly the focal point on a golfer’s list. However, just two hours north of the Cabo airport, in the sleepy town of La Paz, is Puerta Cortés, which should move to the top of the list. 

Imagine waking up to ideal tropical weather and setting out for a championship, 18-hole, Gary Player-designed golf course with panoramic ocean views. Upon finishing your round, sit on a poolside lounge chair, enjoying a cocktail and some freshly made ceviche while staring off into the endless blue oceans of the Sea of Cortez. Do I have your attention? Welcome to Puerta Cortés, situated just up the beach from the charming city of La Paz. Puerta Cortés is a luxurious hotel, spa, and residential community featuring golf, tennis, water activities, a marina, and an exquisite beach club.

Formally known as Costa Baja, the property was recently purchased by Ascendancy, a Mexican-based management firm specializing in real estate investments throughout Mexico and the Caribbean. Ascendancy has begun a $5M renovation and Puerta Cortés prides itself on being not just a first-class resort and spa, but a luxurious residential community as well.

The marina, a quick walk down from the green, is a hub for boat rental explorations, restaurants, and nightlife

Las Colinas is the first residential community, with 72 hillside residences offering contemporary, rustic architecture with sweeping views of the golf course, marina, and Sea of Cortez. With four different residence styles ranging from 2,000 to 3,300 sq. ft., you are sure to find exactly what you are looking for. Prices range from $400,000 to $750,000. The other community, Vista Mar, offers 60 oceanfront condominiums, strategically placed for ultimate views. Vista Mar condominiums have eight different floor plans, with two or three bedrooms or a studio, and range in square footage from 2,600 to 5,000. These condos are priced between $500,000 and $1.4M. Owners at both communities enjoy on-site reception services, a concierge, 24-hour secure, controlled access, and many luxurious amenities on the property. Owners may also place their residence in the vacation rental program for short-term guests to enjoy.

The golf course itself, previously known as CostaBaja Golf Club, is now El Cortés, a phenomenal course designed by one of golf’s most infamous legends, Gary Player. The 18-hole, par-72, 7,082-yard course offers panoramic views of the sea and the stunning resort. The course features large, undulating greens and rolling fairways that are kept in immaculate condition. Player did an incredible job designing his only layout in all of Mexico, building the course directly into its intended surroundings and using the natural terrain to create dramatic elevation changes, making for some unforgettable golf holes. When arriving to the tee at par 5, 14th hole, you will feel like you are on top of the world. This par 5 is arguably the most memorable hole in all of Mexico and it is in fact, the longest hole in the country, measuring over 600 yards. With a 200-foot drop from tee to fairway with a forced carry and bunkers lining the fairway and green, you must bring your finest golf game to make a par here. El Cortés Golf Club includes a grass driving range, practice putting greens, and short-game area. At the end of your round, a margarita and a tasty meal await you at the clubhouse restaurant, featuring outdoor seating for ultimate postgame relaxation.

One of the 72-resident villas at Las Colinas with golf cart port

If golf is not your thing, no worries; endless other activities await, such as paddleboarding, kayaking, snorkeling, and fishing trips, or just a day out boating. For all your water activities be sure to contact Jorge Herrera with Baja Adventure Co.

When it is time to just unwind and relax, choose one of the multiple infinity pools at the resort or the white sandy beach overlooking crystal-clear waters. The cuisine at the resort is out of this world. The chefs use locally sourced produce and fish that is caught just offshore to create unique international menus with their own Mexican flair. Multiple dining options at El Pueblito Marinero range from Mexican to sushi and even Italian. One thing is for sure, you will not go hungry while visiting Puerta Cortés.