How Punta Mita Became Mexico's Most Upmarket Tourism Destination

Golfer in Punta Mita
Golfer in Punta Mita | © Steve Jurvetson / Flickr
Stephen Woodman

In recent years, big-spending tourists have been looking beyond the crowded Mexican resorts of Cancún and Tulum. Many have turned west, to Punta Mita, a private peninsula in the state of Nayarit that is home to the Four Seasons Resort, a St. Regis Resort, and Casa Aramara, a private tropical villa. A favorite getaway for A-listers such as Beyoncé, Rihanna and Chris Martin, the peninsula offers unblemished beaches and gorgeous ocean views.

Punta Mita forms part of the Riviera Nayarit, a nearly 200-mile (321 km) stretch of coast that runs from the port city of San Blas to the resort of Nuevo Vallarta. Surfers have long been drawn to the area for its excellent waves, but the development of Punta Mita really took off 16 years ago, when the Mexican firm DINE bought property and began building a high-end resort.

A beautiful Punta Mita sunset

Today, the bohemian surfer vibe rules no more – Punta Mita is a place of luxury hotels and two golf courses designed by Jack Nicklaus.

Yet truly rich and famous visitors to the 1,500-acre (6.1 square kilometers) peninsula are keen to eschew other guests and rent private property in the area.

When it comes to these elegant seaside estates, Casa Aramara is the pick of the bunch. The property was built by the controversial media entrepreneur Joe Francis and has been available to rent since 2013.

The luxury retreat comes with its own world class chefs and a 35-person staff to wait on you hand and foot. Ranked as one of the world’s top tropical vacation homes by Forbes Magazine, the house has a prime location on the peninsula and top-notch security.

Of course, guests pay handsomely for the privilege. During the peak season the house costs $95,000 (€77,000) to rent for the week. Over Christmas, a week stay costs $125,000 (€101,000).

Casa Aramara has hosted celebrities such as Jennifer Aniston, Eva Longoria and the Kardashian family. In fact, the home was even featured on their reality show Keeping Up with the Kardashians. In June 2014, Casa Aramara also served as a honeymoon getaway for Kim Kardashian and Kanye West.

If Casa Aramara is a little out of your price range you can still visit Punta Mita and enjoy its splendid beaches and natural beauty.

The St. Regis Hotel offers day passes to their facilities. As this is Punta Mita, these are not cheap either – $340 (€275) for 2 people, not including food or drink. Yet the pass gives guests access to their own room, three different pool areas and a range of incredible and affordable restaurants.

Most visitors to Punta Mita fly into Puerto Vallarta, in the adjacent state of Jalisco. From the airport, it takes around 40 minutes to reach the peninsula.

Casa Calandria, Punta Mita

If you’re looking for somewhere to stay, why not book into one of the best all-inclusive resorts in Mexico? You can now book your stay on Culture Trip. Alternately, check into one of the best resorts in Playa del Carmen, or one of the top resorts in Puerto Vallarta.

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