If you have the need to feel more like a man, you could buy a truck like I did, or you can take that same hard earned money and take yourself on the ultimate guys trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. For those on the west coast, Mexico/Cabo is an obvious choice, but for those who haven’t considered Mexico for an epic guys trip, you couldn’t find a better place to play epic golf and get into tons of trouble together. With so much in the news over the past couple of years talking about how dangerous Mexico is, Cabo is out of the danger zone and not on the list of government’s list of travel advisories. Not only offering some of the world’s best tracks both sea-side as well as in the middle of the desert, Cabo also features a wide selection of world-class resorts and private villas.
Picking a great course is probably the easiest part of planning a trip to Cabo, but choosing where to stay can get confusing quickly. Searching online will give you more results than you know what to do with, so that’s why when planning our recent trip I looked to Luxury Villa Collections to help us find a private Villa that would not only provide an epic stay, but also be centrally located to the golf courses we were interested in playing.
Luxury Villa Collections brings local knowledge as well as direct access to a concierge who is there to help ensure your stay is enjoyable and that all of your needs are taken care of. Want margaritas waiting for you with chips and guacamole, just say the word. Need the cabinets filled up with your favorite foods and drinks, they’ll do the shopping. Want to setup an in villa massage, they’ve got that covered too – oh, and it’s probably not advertised, but your concierge is there if you happen to need someone to bail you out of a Mexican jail in the middle of the night – Yeah, that happened…. not to us, but we heard the story!
Our Villa (Casa Portofino) was located off the first hole of the Cabo Del Sol Desert Course and featured a home I dream of living in – big screen TV, wireless internet, 4 bedrooms, air conditioning (that worked GREAT), a pool, hot tub, patio with outdoor sound, bbq, locking garage, living room, dining room, full kitchen, pantry, washer, dryer and more. Our living space for the trip was both relaxing as well as the perfect party house. With the music pumping and the hot tub heated, we had a hard time getting ourselves in bed for our early morning rounds.
Staying in the middle of the mix of Cabo’s crazy list of golf courses, we had hoped to walk on at Cabo Del Sol’s Ocean course, but unfortunately it was closed for work the days we had available to get out – so we headed about 10 minutes down the road to Palmilla for a memorable round mixing the Mountain and Ocean Courses for our 18.
Palmilla’s Mountain Course is a great track by most standards, but when you follow it up with their Ocean Course the Mountain experience begins to fade in your memory. The Ocean Course delivers on every level you’d want – Beautiful views, amazing and memorable holes, challenging and not exactly forgiving but not cruel either. Palmilla’s clubhouse might go down as “understated” by some, and could be considered lacking by others. Their rental clubs served the purpose though and we truly enjoyed our round. My suggestion for playing in Mexico – put Palmilla on your list, it’s probably the most bang for the buck that you’ll get – use Palmilla to get your bearings for your first round in Cabo, and then let the trip ramp up from there. Palmilla won’t blow your budget and it will leave you fulfilled on a fun and memorable round of golf.
Probably my favorite memory on the Mountain Course was hitting across a HUGE arroyo to a mesa on hole 5 – I hit multiple balls off of this tee not for lack of quality on my first swing, but because it was just so fun.
The Ocean Course was just altogether memorable – challenging holes that made you smile – surrounded by homes that made me dream of wealth.
With private courses that most can only dream of ever playing, accessing Diamante golf course (#58 in the world on Golf Magazine’s 2011 list) was a dream come true that delivered on every level. A full review of Diamante will be following shortly.
After playing a warm round of golf, finding something cold to drink is a worth endeavor, and Cabo offers more than enough options to keep any olympic drinking champion inebriated for longer than needed. We stayed close to home and headed poolside at the Sheraton Hacienda Del Mar for beachfront drinks brought to us while we lounged in the sun.
For food, I suggest avoiding the downtown area of Los Cabos (take a trip at some point to see the arch, but beyond that, there are few reasons to get stuck in the tourist trap). Maybe check out The Office on the beach with a view of the Arch, but if you want a fine dining experience, you can’t go wrong with dinner at one of the many outstanding resort restaurants – my suggestion would be to splurge and try eating at Esperanza – we were able to enjoy dinner and sunset there and it’s unbeatable and the drinks are top notch.
Ultimately, you’re in Mexico, and you can’t go wrong with a trip into a local neighborhood for some street food – how can you beat a fresh taco and some coke from a glass bottle!
And when you need a day off while in Cabo, it’s well worth the hour drive to trek up to Todos Santos for the day for some shopping, exploring, and maybe a visit to Hotel California (no, it’s not actually the “place” referenced by the Eagles, but they do play the song) – They don’t have the world’s best food, but it’s solid and they make a mean jalapeno margarita and your wife will likely thank you for taking a day away from golfing and boozing to show your more of Mexico. Being a fan of the countryside, if there was a solid track in Todos Santos, I could spend an entire trip in this more sleepy town.
This article was originally published on mygolfspy.com.