When you consider the portfolio of courses from big-name designers, and the fact that the oldest of them is scarcely 20 years old, it quickly becomes apparent that Los Cabos is unprecedented as a golfing destination.
In no other region of the world have so many world-class courses sprung up so recently.
This fact is underlined by the latest GOLF Magazine rankings (featured in the publication’s October issue), which place two Los Cabos courses – Diamante’s Dunes Course and Cabo del Sol’s Ocean Course – among the “Top 100 Courses in the World.” They were the only courses in México so honored.
Both have been included before, but the Diamante Dunes Course’s ranking of 38 is the highest ever for a Los Cabos based layout, and reflects the panel’s respect for the 7,300 yard links-style stunner – it’s only a few spots behind Royal Birkdale and Royal St. George’s, both of which are in rotation for The Open Championship – as well as recognition of Los Cabos as one of the world’s elite golf destinations.
Designed by 1997 PGA Championship winner and former Ryder Cup captain Davis Love III, with assistance from brother Mark Love and architect Paul Cowley, the Diamante Dunes Course is spectacular by any standards, a windswept, lay-of-the-land links that rambles through colossal 50-foot-high dunes and around giant blowout bunkers as it journeys to and from the sea. Located six miles north of downtown Cabo San Lucas on the Pacific Coast, the course is the centerpiece of a 1,500-acre private resort community that also boasts a course designed by 14-time major champion Tiger Woods.
Diamante recently brought back Love and his design team to replace the inland 12th and 13th holes with a new pair of holes (a downhill par 5 and a short par 4), each sculpted from vast white sand dunes within earshot of the thundering surf. These holes, opened last year, greatly enhance the golf experience and likely were a strong factor in the rise of the Dunes Course on the Top 100 list.
“It’s quite an honor,” said Diamante developer Ken Jowdy of his facility’s improved ranking. “The changes at 12 and 13 certainly had quite a bit to do with it (the promotion), as we took out two inland holes and replaced them with links-style holes that fit in better with the overall theme of the course. To be ranked so prominently on GOLF Magazine’s list is a validation of everything we do. We’re thrilled.”
18-time major champion Jack Nicklaus built the Ocean Course at Cabo del Sol on a parcel of land he described as “the best piece of golf property I’ve ever seen.” This is the course that put Los Cabos on the international golf map when it opened in 1994, with seven holes hugging the coastline, with gorgeous desert, mountain and Sea of Cortés views. Now clinging to the No. 100 spot on GOLF Magazine’s rankings, Cabo del Sol’s Ocean Course remains the most celebrated international course on Nicklaus’ extensive design résumé, an amazing achievement given that “The Golden Bear” has designed nearly 300 courses in over 40 countries.
“It is an honor to once again be voted among the “Top 100 Courses in the World” by the esteemed panel at GOLF Magazine,” said Greg Tallman, Cabo del Sol’s director of golf. “We take great pride in having been named to the list for the last 20+ years and, as a facility accessible to the public, we are excited to share such a great course with visitors seeking out a truly special golf experience in Los Cabos. The Ocean Course has endured the test of time and remains one of the very best golf courses in the world.”
Those wishing to play Nicklaus’ 7,091 yard Ocean Course at Cabo del Sol may do so. The course is open to the public, with greens fees during October ranging from $140 – 285 U.S. (depending upon the tee time). For reservations, click here.
Diamante Dunes is not open to the public, but is accessible to those interested in becoming owners or vacation club members in the community. For more information, visit www.diamantecabosanlucas.com.