The Four Seasons Punta Mita, Mexico

When one of our favorite journalists/artists/friends, Elliot V. Kotek, informed us of his recent jaunt to the Four Seasons Punta Mita, we had to hear the skinny. Kotek is the founder of The Nation of Artists (www.thenationofartists.com), the entertainment correspondent for ABC Radio, the former Editor-in-Chief of Moving Pictures magazine, and has served on film festival juries worldwide. He’s written for a slew of publications including C, The Book LA, DistinctionSanta Barbara, GQ, Style.com, and his stellar photography has been exhibited at galleries internationally.  This month, he’s here to tell us just why The Four Seasons Punta Mita in Mexico is a must.

A month ago, I headed down to the Four Seasons Punta Mita (Mexico) located on an idyllic stretch of peninsula just outside Puerto Vallarta.  The resort’s simply stunning and serene nature, coupled with the everything’s-easy hospitality that the Four Seasons staff is famous for, makes this a destination not only worth visiting, but worth re-visiting time and time again. There is no reason why a trip to the Punta Mita property shouldn’t become your family’s tradition.

The layout of the Four Season’s luxurious lodgings distinguishes itself from other modern resort properties that offer everything under the sun, by coupling the amazing amenities with less relaxing walks linking the facilities. Somehow, despite offering everything, nothing here seems too far away, and each destination delivers a welcoming statement of refreshment upon arrival, whether that be a small smoothie shot, a cupful of chilled tropical fruit wedges, or a complimentary foot massage. Mmmmmm… foot massages.

As with most other first class facilities, the spas at Punta Mita are GORGEOUS (and their signature treatment has two massage therapists working your knots out simultaneously – yep, that’s four hands!). For those preferring a walk around to a lie down, the five-star property also boasts a championship golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus with a dramatic water feature, a picture perfect green situated on its own tiny whale’s tail-shaped island just off the coast.

This signature Four Seasons property offers unique treats like, in addition to running cooking classes for guests at Bahia, a beachside grill that takes full viewing advantage of the sculpted rocks jutting out of the peninsula (bordered by sandy shorelines below and water-fed sunsets above), the resort’s chefs also run a “Catch of the Day” experience that actively engages resort residents in an educational culinary encounter.

Gathering on the beach, the chefs display the morning’s haul – parrot fish, mahi mahi, several types of snapper, Pacific spiny lobsters – and tout each species’ specific tastes and textures, tempting guests to choose the time and place (“I’ll take it on the balcony of my suite at seven,” for example) for their fantastically-fresh feast.

While the ocean life is vivid and vibrant, and iguanas can be spotted warming a rock or two, the most dangerous life-force on the resort is clearly Raymundo Vasquez. Vasquez is an accredited tequila sommelier and his tastings will have you appreciating the alcoholic agave in a whole new way.

Throughout the grounds, gorgeous sculptures punctuate the landscape. Complementing the artistic focus, the Four Seasons Punta Mita has its own cultural center showcasing regional Nayarit art and artisans.

In a smart move, the Four Seasons also caters to couples and cavorting parents, addressing their needs with an adults-only pool and cabana corrale (with its own menu and distinctive music mix) to provide peace, privacy and romance away from the fray. Oh, and there’s a Four Seasons yacht available for charter, too.

Testament to the complete package this resort provides is that I’ve managed to highlight so many facets of the place without yet touching upon the magic infinity pool set overlooking the beaches, without mentioning the individual plunge pools that privately service each of the suites, and without spotlighting the kid-friendly lazy river rides and childcare facilities with activities that adults would be proud to partake in.

Like I said, this is one place that could easily become a Christmas tradition.

Why else Mexico makes sense:

1. The US dollar is at lows against a deluge of currencies but delivers a whopping 13 pesos for each piece of the little green monster. Taking in fresh coconuts or local tacos (at 10 pesos a piece), means Mexican deliciousness can be delivered for less than a dollar.

2. The rate of incidence of swine flu is preoccupying more physician hours outside of Mexico than in the country of the flu’s origin. With shortages of vaccine causing queues and confusion in the pending winter cold, you couldn’t be smarter than to the warm seas of the Pacific.

3. A direct three hour flight from LAX to Puerto Vallarta’s international port d’air makes flying to 75-degree humidity-free paradise way too easy. In fact, flying to Chicago, or spending an extra couple of hours on a plane to Manhattan just to experience the piercing chill of east coast Christmas season seems downright illogical!

http://www.fourseasons.com/puntamita/

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