On the Pacific coastline of Mexico’s Nayarit state lies a small, upscale resort community with a fast-growing population. Punta Mita’s dreamy beach-and-jungle setting with plenty to see and do has drawn increasing numbers of remote workers, including many entrepreneurs, in recent years.
Punta Mita is a 1,500-acre private peninsula and a gated, high-end retreat with relatively accessible luxury property prices and an emphasis on rest and relaxation and outdoor pursuits. It offers ideal conditions for remote workers seeking more picturesque surroundings in which to work. It’s safe, modern and immersed in nature, plus it’s a short flight from the West Coast of the U.S..
The sanctuary-inspired, luxury residential resort in west Mexico, just outside Puerto Vallarta has an expanding luxury real estate market and many luxury brands, including two Jack Nicklaus signature golf courses, and top-of-the-range hotels by the Four Seasons, St. Regis Punta and the five-star private resort estate of Casa Aramara. All of this is set along a pristine coastline and within its lush interior, which teams with plants, birds and other wildlife.
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Local agents report soaring demand for homes in Punta Mita over the past year or so, dropping inventory levels to a record low. The pandemic has made this destination grow even more popular with the elite for being private and secluded, said Bárbara Livas, of Monterrey Sotheby’s International Realty.
“You can enjoy a home with deluxe accommodation and many outdoor activities,” she said.
Punta Mita sits at the top tip of the Bay of Banderas, in the Mexican state of Nayarit. It lies just off the Tepic-Puerto Vallarta highway, also known as the Riviera Nayarit Boulevard, which goes north to Sayulita, San Blas and Tepic. Its west, south and east borders are surrounded by the Pacific Ocean, and it is entered at the northern end via the roads Vialidad La Punta and the Federal la Cruz de Huanacaxtle – Punta de Mita.
The resort is about 24 miles from the Licenciado Gustavo Díaz Ordaz International airport in Puerto Vallarta, which serves multiple destinations in the U.S., including Los Angeles where flights take about three hours.
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A nice but simple three-bedroom oceanfront home can start from US$350,000 while a luxury, ten-bedroom residence can cost as much as $12 million and sometimes more in some cases, Ms. Livas said, who added that properties can be sold in either US dollars or Mexican pesos.
Punta Mita has a few standalone houses and mostly apartments and private villas that are part of private developments and resorts, which face the coastline and have serene and secluded ocean views, Ms. Livas said. There are about 20 communities in the resort, including branded private residences, estate lots, golf and waterfront condos, and hillside villas built in a modern and contemporary style with Mexican and Mediterranean influences, according to LPR Luxury Punta de Mita.
Many homes feature high-end amenities and stylish interiors. For example, the Four Seasons private villas have private infinity-edge plunge pools, gourmet kitchens and antique Mexican wooden doors, among other features.
On the edge of Punta Mita, about 7 miles away, is Naya, a new beachfront apartment scheme created by the Mexican-owned One Development Group, housing 60 homes set across eight buildings spread over 11 acres. The complex is built in a minimalist style with concrete and wooden accents and has a 102-meter private beach and large balconies featuring plunge pools. Only one-third of the natural environment has been built on and the residences have ocean views and access to a team of staff, chefs, spa facilities, gym, pools and private beach, among other amenities, Ms. Livas said.
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What Makes It Unique
Punta Mita is a gated, low-density, master-planned resort created 15 years ago by Mexican development company Dine who bought the 1,500-acre plot to create a luxury resort with high-end hotels and world-ranking golf courses. “It appeals to an exclusive group of people for many reasons, but primarily because of the excellent value it offers in terms of luxury, accessibility, privacy, and a beautiful setting in a secure gated, oceanfront community, Ms. Livas said.
Punta Mita comes from the Aztec word “mictlan” meaning “gateway to paradise” and it lives up to its name. The peninsula boasts a lush, jungle setting with a hill overlooking the ocean and has idyllic sandy beaches and coves all along its three sides. It has waters with a kaleidoscope of bright blues and the volcanic Marietas Islands (15 minutes offshore).
Many people come to Punta Mita to unplug and unwind. It’s a trend recognized by the hotels on the island with St. Regis Punta Mita Resort encouraging guests to detox from the digital world and reconnect with nature with its new Disconnect to Reconnect package.
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Punta Mita is a great place to relax on the beach and not do much else, but there is plenty to keep residents who want more occupied.
At Club Punta Mita, there is the 72-hole, Jack Nicklaus Signature Punta Mita Pacifico Golf Course set on the northernmost point of Banderas Bay, a tennis center, and residents’ beach club. Punta Mita’s other Jack Nicklaus Signature championship par-18 course is called Bahia and offers pars with fairways meandering through the St. Regis Resort, El Encanto, Porta Fortuna and La Punta Estates communities. Nicklaus’s Pacifico course features the famous “Tail of the Whale” hole—an optional part of the course that requires golfers to play their first shot from an onshore tee box to an island green located on a natural rock formation.
The Kupuri Beach Club’s dedicated concierge person guides members through state-of-the-art spa services and recreational activities at Punta Mita Ocean Sports program, which has “top-line” equipment. Meanwhile, Sufi Ocean Club in the Porta Fortuna community is a new addition and features a curving, beachfront saltwater pool, a stately reception hall, wooden poolside cabanas and seaside dining at the Sufito Cevicheria Bar.
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Across the peninsula, there are walking trails amid nature, while the top local surfing spot at the Cove is a short water taxi ride away. Head to the summit of the nearby 1,150-foot Monkey Mountain in the Higuera Blanca community for impressive coastline views. Meanwhile, the wildlife-filled Marietas Islands have great snorkeling opportunities and the Instagram-worthy “Hidden Beach” set within a man-made crater.
The Four Seasons Punta Mita restaurants include Dos Catrinas, which has authentic Mexican fare with a contemporary twist, and the Asian-inspired Aramara, while Carolina at the St. Regis Punta Mita Resort offers a AAA Diamond Award dining experience and modern Mexican cuisine.
Both the St. Regis and Four Seasons resorts host rotating art exhibitions by contemporary and traditional Mexican and Latin American artists throughout the year and as well as casual clothing stores. Outside of Punta Mita, explore the numerous art galleries and artisan shops in the beach resort city of Puerto Vallarta, an hour away, and in the coastal town of Sayulita, 30 minutes north of Punta Mita.
Puerto Vallarta’s well-regarded schools include the Instituto SPAC or ISPAC, a private co-ed school for pre-school, primary and secondary students; the British American School, which offers education to students from kindergarten to the 12th grade; the American School of Puerto Vallarta, a private, bilingual and bicultural school for pupils ages 3 to 18.
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Who Lives There
It’s mostly wealthy Mexicans and Americans and many have chosen the resort as a refuge from the pandemic, Ms. Livas said. “For some it’s a vacation home, for others it’s a second home. The people who live here are part of a community of individuals who share tastes for the finer things in life,” she said. “They love to have a fun and relaxing time just as much as they like to work hard. Within the last ten years, the entrepreneurial community has begun to make a strong move here and has become one of the leading buyers of Punta Mita real estate.”
Bill Gates and Tim Ferris own property on the beachfront in Punta Mita, according to Ms. Livas. Jack Nicklaus designed the Pacifico golf course a few years after he started to regularly holiday at the resort in the late 1990s.
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There’s a positive outlook for the Punta Mita market over the coming year, Ms. Livas. “Punta Mita real estate trends have been very favorable, even in a post-pandemic world. It has become a highly desirable location, especially with the growing acceptance of remote work.”
Alejandro Aldrete of The Agency says that sales have been “out of control since last summer.” He added that inventory levels are very low because everything is being bought and that the “market is as hot as it’s ever been.”
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