Tell me the truth, have you ever heard of Punta Mita, Mexico? If you said no, don’t think twice – I hadn’t either until not that long ago. But now – now, I want to tell you why you should know it, and why you should visit.
So often I hear from clients that they are looking to go somewhere warm, somewhere tropical, somewhere with a beautiful beach and delicious food…but not Mexico. The question I can’t help but always have to ask is, but why?
Many people’s first thought when it comes to Mexico is the turquoise waters, white-sand beaches, and all-inclusive heaven that is Cancun and the Riviera Maya. And for good reason – this part of Mexico is gorgeous, for sure – but it’s not the only part of Mexico, and it certainly doesn’t define the entire country in terms of culture and available experiences.
Mexico is full of magical small towns, authentic culinary traditions, and hand-crafted cocktails, lush jungles, arid deserts, and fascinating metropolises with incredible color and architecture. It is also home to almost 6000 miles of coastline, which means there’s a whole country of beaches and experiences to explore beyond Cancun.
So what and where is Punta Mita, anyway?
Punta Mita is on the Riviera Nayarit about 45 minutes to an hour from Puerto Vallarta, in the state of Nayarit on the western, Pacific Coast of Mexico. Punta Mita itself is a 1500 acre private peninsula that’s home to two luxury resorts – including the incredible Four Seasons Punta Mita, where I stayed – as well as sub-communities, and a charming town with excellent restaurants.
Just a few minutes away from the private Punta Mita community are several other luxury resorts, such as the absolutely stunning Conrad Punta de Mita, which sits on 2 miles of pristine, flat, white-sand beach. The whole area is surrounded by lush jungle and the impressive Sierra Madre Mountains. Punta Mita actually lies on the same latitude as Hawaii, and I felt so many similarities between the two destinations while I was there.
The Epitome of Luxury in Punta Mita
Let’s jump right into the resorts I scouted, starting with the Conrad. Conrad is a 5-star, luxury hotel brand owned by Hilton. The Punta de Mita property houses just over 300 rooms in a private, gated community. The main building houses the beautiful, open-air lobby and guest rooms. The rest of the heart-shaped resort is composed of individual “Casas” that house more guestrooms and impressive suites, including ones just steps from the sandy beach.
Almost all of the 300+ rooms face the ocean, and many of them have perfectly placed plunge pools to enjoy a private dip while reading a book and listening to the waves crash into the sand below.
The Conrad Punta de Mita was amazingly family-friendly – the main pool even has an incredible water slide! – while still remaining a high level of sophistication and intimacy for more romantic pursuits. The adults-only pool is home to a swim-up bar as well as a restaurant and champagne bar.
Eat, Drink, and Travel in Punta Mita
The resort’s 4 restaurants were serving incredibly fresh, expertly presented food. My breakfast at Arbol was a delicious Chile Relleno with fresh fruit and pastries. My favorite thing about the restaurant was the handsomely decorated private room where guests can enjoy exclusive Agave tastings. With hundreds of bottles of Agave spirits, you can reserve a tasting of spirits only, spirits & tapas, or a full-course dinner featuring Agave-inspired menu items expertly paired back to a range of Agave spirits, including Tequila and Mezcal.
At Codex – the sophisticated, beachside restaurant surrounded by mangroves – you’ll find a celebration of long-lost traditions and culinary techniques reminiscent of the ancestors. You’re encouraged to be present in the moment – to leave the worries of everyday life, and the distractions of your cell phone and social media behind so that you can fully embrace the experience. Hand-crafted cocktails and fantastic local, traditional fare are the indulgences and a bright, brilliant sunset is the backdrop. Don’t forget your bug spray!
Lunch poolside at Paleta is perfect for tacos and fresh coconut milk, while Mezquite on the beach offers an excellent experience for American and Mexican classics and a special fisherman dining experience that we can pre-arrange for you!
The spacious rooms are fantastically luxurious and the majority of them have expansive ocean views. There’s plenty of spaces for families, with guaranteed connecting rooms and the ability to book entire “Casas” to accommodate large groups. The beachfront Casas are well worth the bit of extra splurging, and the private plunge pools and spacious patios with comfortable furniture for lounging, dining, coffee-ing, or cocktail-ing are a true oasis.
I must admit I spent a bit of time indulging in my private plunge pool, relaxing with a glass of wine in one hand, a book in the other, and the glorious sound of the crashing waves as my background music. The view of endless sand and sea could never possibly grow old.
The Door of Paradise
But after a beautiful stay at the Conrad, it was time to move on to the Four Seasons Punta Mita – which was really the first luxury resort to pioneer paradise in this part of Mexico. The Four Seasons impresses first and foremost because of its dramatic location – it sits at the point of Peninsula, sprawling between a cliff on one side and two beautiful beaches on the other. The natural landscape is dramatic and awe-inspiring. In fact, Punta means “point” and “Mita” is an ancient word from the native peoples of the area that roughly translates into the “Door of Paradise”. So in other words, the Four Seasons Punta Mita is literally the point at the door of paradise. How magical is that?!
The property comprises lush and beautiful grounds and gardens that house over 600+ guest rooms, standalone villas, and multi-bedroom residences. You’ll be greeted in the most delicious way to kick your vacation off right, with the hotel’s signature fresh welcome drink (tequila added upon request!). The resort is truly a haven for families and couples with a breathtaking infinity pool that seems to end right where the ocean begins. The Lazy River meanders through lush gardens and is fun for the whole family or for couples on a cocktail flotilla. For adults looking for romance, there is an oasis adults-only pool with its own restaurant, bar, and luxury cabanas available for rent.
Dining options for every taste
I thoroughly enjoyed dining for breakfast, lunch, and dinner at the perfectly positioned Dos Catrinas, where the staff was incredible, the food fresh, and the cocktails hand-crafted. The live music at the end of the night in Dos Catrinas bar is definitely a must for an entertaining evening. Armara is a tribute to Asian cuisine while using fresh, local ingredients and expert techniques through extensive local training in Hong Kong, Thailand, and other countries throughout Asia. BAHÍA is a “feet in the sand” beachside restaurant, serving grilled meats and fish and offering the most spectacular sunsets and laidback luxury experience.
The activities are endless on property. You can participate in beachfront yoga, championship golf, tennis lessons, Spanish classes, kayak tours, Mezcal tastings, Snorkeling experiences, Tequila blending, and so much more. If you can pull yourself away from the pull of the pools and the ocean, I highly recommend an ATV experience through the Sierra Madre mountains that ends with some free time in the small Pueblo Magico town of Sayulita.
Sayulita is a colorful, boho-hippie surfer town with interesting shops, bars, and restaurants that line the beach. It is a great place to grab a margarita after an exhilarating ride through the jungle! If you do opt for the ATV, I don’t want you to go in blind – you’ll come out muddy, dusty, and VERY dirty! It’s a BLAST!
Because this was a work trip – and really, every time I travel it turns into at least a bit of a work trip (I’m always on the hunt for the best spots and experiences for my clients!) – we also toured several other room categories besides our gorgeous Ocean Casitas. I was so impressed by the 3-bedroom residences and the standalone Villas, both of which come with private pools (the villas more than one!), a golf cart to zip around the property, full kitchens, incredibly spacious patios with ocean views, and everything you need outside to grill, dine, and indulge. Everything is beautifully appointed in typical Four Seasons style with a modern, Mexican flair.
These spaces are fantastic for large families or multi-gen trips, but the truth is that even my Ocean Casita with its King Bed and pullout sofa can nicely accommodate a family.
Moments of Bliss
On the morning of my departure, I sat at breakfast and looked out at the ocean, tasted the salty sea air on my tongue, felt the heat of the sun and the humidity in the air, and felt at total peace. I watched where the waves crashed into the rocks further out in the ocean and fully felt in my bones that I was at the Point of the Door to Paradise. I can’t wait to send you there!
Are you ready to plan a trip to Punta Mita? Let’s start here with our inquiry form!