The Nicklaus name has proven again its status as a driving force in Mexico’s booming golf market, as BEST’s Golf Guides to Mexico recently named Jack Nicklaus as the "Best Golf Course Architect in Mexico." The recognition came in conjunction with the magazine’s 2006 list of the "Top 30 Courses in Mexico," where Nicklaus Design led the pace for the second year in a row by taking nine spots.
In its annual polling of golf and travel industry professionals in and outside of Mexico, the magazine added several new voting categories: Best Architect in Mexico; Best Par 3; Best Par 4; and Best Par 5. Nicklaus again dominated, taking two of the three, with the Ocean Course at Cabo del Sol staking claim to the top par 3 (No. 17) and par 5 (No. 15). In addition, No. 3B at Four Seasons Golf Club Punta Mita–a spectacular ocean island par 3 and an option third hole to Punta Mita’s equally beautiful inland par 3–was voted in the top three among par-3 holes. Palmilla’s 16th hole was among the top-three par-5 holes in Mexico.
For the second year in a row, the Ocean Course at Cabo del Sol, a Jack Nicklaus Signature Course opened in 1994, took the top spot among the 30 courses. Located at the tip of the Baja Peninsula along the 20-mile corridor between Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo, the course features dramatic views of the mountains, desert and sea. Two neighboring Nicklaus Design courses in Cabo, El Dorado and Palmilla, made the list at No. 4 and 5, respectively.
The focus on Nicklaus Design then shifted to the Puerto Vallarta region, where the Four Seasons Golf Punta Mita ranked No. 6, followed by Vista Vallarta at No. 11. A sixth Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course, Moon Palace in Cancun, was No. 12.
Other Nicklaus Design courses making the list were Cozumel Country Club at No. 18, Tres Marias at No. 24 (which debuted in the list after opening November 2004) and the Club De Golf Bosques at No. 29.
Nicklaus Design currently has 293 courses open for play, 12 of which are in Mexico, and another 58 courses under construction, including 14 in Mexico. The company is represented in 28 countries and 37 states, but has projects under development in 30 different countries.