The Takeaway: Quivira is one of the most fun, stunning, and unique courses on the planet that makes a case as Mexico’s best track. The conditioning is immaculate, the elevation changes dramatic, and the views are captivating. Each hole is engaging with memorability out the roof. Quivira is an absolute must play and worth a trip to Cabo on its own. Grade A+
Designer: Jack Nicklaus in 2014
Phone Number: U.S. (866) 578-4847 or Mexico +52 (800) 966-0606
Course Website: Official Website - Visit Quivira Golf Club's official website by clicking on the link provided.
Directions: Get here! - Via de Lerry, Cabo San Lucas, Baja California Sur 23450 – MEXICO
What to Expect: If having fun and soaking in stunning scenery are two factors that weigh highly on your enjoyment of a golf course, Quivira could very well end up as one of your all time favorite courses. Located on beachfront property on the southern tip of Mexico's Baja Peninsula, Quivira enjoys some of the most captivating views, extreme elevation changes, and quality conditioning you can find anywhere on the globe. The Jack Nicklaus design isn’t worried about being conventional with a couple holes that some players may find quirky, comfort stations with chefs ready to serve, and a ¾ mile drive from the 4th to the 5th hole which includes 200 feet of climb in elevation. The comfort station at the 5th hole features panoramic views of the property which boggle the senses they are so impressive while the comfort station after the 8th hole features breakfast quesadillas and homemade lemonade that I long to enjoy again. The opening four holes and the finishing hole are located on the flattest part of the property while the middle 13 holes boast incredibly entertaining terrain and memorable holes designs that are a brilliant combination of strategy and fun. The photo everyone will see is of the 6th hole, and why not, it is one of the finest one-shotters I’ve ever seen and an instant postcard come to life moment. This cliffside beauty is almost worth it on its own to bring players out to Quivira, but unlike other courses with all of their eggs in one basket, Quivira has plenty of other holes that will draw you back to its design to enjoy over and over. The conditioning is absolutely top notch, service on spot, and the on course food/drinks are complimentary. You won’t find anyone walking the course as the distance between holes and elevation changes would make that impractical, so sit back and enjoy the ride in the provided cart and embark on perhaps the most entertaining golf course in Mexico.
By the Numbers
Individual Hole Analysis
Signature Hole: 6th Hole – 180 Yard Par 3 – The all-world 6th hole is what postcards and magazine covers are made of. The stunning one-shotter is perched on a cliff edge with the mighty Pacific on the left and sandy hillside on the right. Players will have to pick their jaw up off the ground before teeing off on this hole that looks like something from a video game that has come to life. Sand encircles the back and left side of the green and acts as a catcher’s mitt for balls curving off line and heading to the water abyss while also adding character and aesthetics to the hole. It is tough for a picture to accurately depict how great some holes are, but at Quivira the photos of the 6th hole should be inspiring enough for you to book a flight to Cabo right away.
Best Par 3: 13th Hole – 148 Yards – Reminiscent of the 16th hole at Cabot Cliffs, the cliff edge 13th hole is full of eye candy highlighted by the stair-step cascading of the boulder formation down to the ocean right of the green. At under 150 yards from the tips, the 13th shouldn't be intimidating to virtually anyone, especially with the generous bail out area left of the green that is quick to kick balls onto the putting surface. Given the slope left of the green and the fact that the entire putting surface slides from left to right, there is little reason to ever go pin seeking at a flag on the right half of the green. This is a gorgeous hole and a great opportunity to card a birdie, so enjoy every minute of this beauty.
Best Par 4: 14th Hole – 355 Yards – The stretch of holes 12-14 is absolutely marvelous and culminates at this risk/reward par four. Only 355 yards from the tips, the hole can be shortened dramatically if players take aim over the dune on the right side that is shielding the green from view. You'll have to carry the ball 250 yards to clear the sand but you'll need to be careful to not get too aggressive as you are effectively attacking the shallowest angle into the green and balls that carry too far can skip into the bushes and dune on the opposite side. A successful attempt at the green will yield the ever elusive eagle putt and a chance to take a couple of strokes back from Old Man Par. The conservative play is a 260 yard tee shot to the fat part of the dogleg which will leave an unobstructed view of the green and a wedge in your hand to get aggressive with. Options are one of the things that make great golf holes and the options here paired with a fantastic setting create a hole worth remembering.
Best Par 5: 12th Hole – 635 Yards – What a hole! It seems that in Jack's more recent designs he is doing a fabulous job of creating at least one three-shot par five that is equally strategic and dramatic. At Quivira the triumphant 12th hole is such an offering with 635 yards to cover enroute to the green that rests just above the beach. The hole is shaped like a reverse 'S' with players having to decide just how aggressive to get with their tee shot as they survey the amount of forced carry required as well as the large drop in terrain. A line just left of the bunker on the right offers the most amount of forgiveness while still allowing your ball to take the slope and tumble down the fairway several extra yards to set up the second shot. Players will want to keep their balls up the left side on their next shot since the fairway slopes away to the right and opens up the angle to the green. The putting surface has a mini Biarritz effect with a swell through the middle of the green that can quickly yield a three-putt if you find yourself on the wrong tier, so distance control when attacking the green is imperative. Bottom line, this hole is a blast to play given the options, downhill terrain, and gorgeous setting.
Birdie Time: 5th Hole – 310 Yard Par 4 – There are two holes that are going to get more talk than any others at Quivira and they just happen to be back to back; the driveable par four 5th and the one-shot 6th. The 5th is one of the most fun, and certainly controversial, holes in all of Mexico, if not the world. This cliff side offering features a blind tee shot to a fairway that slopes steeply towards the ocean on the left at an angle that would make an Olympic slalom skier pucker. The safe play is a 200 yard shot straight away that will leave a short downhill wedge shot to a green perched on the cliff edge where anything that goes long will find a watery grave. The bold play is a 3-wood right of the green that will tumble down onto the putting surface which can quickly yield an eagle putt but can just as quickly end up in one of the surrounding bunkers or the ocean if you aren’t spot on with your line and distance. The slope from the fairway to the green is covered with long grass so you can’t hit a draw with an iron that catches the fairway and tumbles down to the putting surface; you have to hit a club with more carry on a bolder line which is one of the great risk/reward elements of the hole. Quirky? Probably. Memorable? Absolutely. Fun? Without question.
Bogey Beware: 16th Hole – 493 Yard Par 4 – At nearly 500 yards, the 16th is a stout test down the stretch at Quivira. The tee shot plays from an elevated tee to a ribbon fairway that is partially blind on the right side. The severe drop in elevation means extra yardage but it also means if a ball is slightly off line it will continue to veer offline for a long time before bouncing on the ground. On a windy day, this tee shot can be really tough and you might consider a long iron just to get yourself in play. On the approach shot the fairway tilts from left to right with a large boulder pile perched short of the green as a deterrent to anyone thinking about laying up on their second shot. Lastly, a large mound fronts the green and is quick to repel shots trying to utilize the ground game into the putting surface, so a towering draw is the best approach shot here; no problem right! This hole is a brute and if you manage to par it then you almost assuredly will have honors heading into the 17th.