We launched our weeklong golf tour to Puerto Vallarta at the El Tigre Golf Club. It is the nearest golf course to the upscale oceanfront resort area know as Nuevo Vallarta area. North of the city is a 200 mile coastline known as Riviera Nayarit. Emerging as a beach and golf destination, the area enjoys views of the Pacific ocean and the Sierra Madre mountains. Average temperatures between 72 F and 82 F year round.
Entering the property, golfers pass through a dramatic stone archway resembling a Mayan temple. More impressive is the live Bengal tiger in his private habitat for which the club derives its name.
Robert von Hagge, Mike Smelek and Rick Baril developed El Tigre in 2008. Across the road from the upscale oceanfront hotels of Nuevo Vallarta, the land is unremarkable. Fortunate views of the surrounding Sierra Madre mountains inspired them to create a playable course. Lacking the lush green conditioning on typical resort courses , splendid mango and palm trees line El Tigre Golf Club.
Sandy soil is the base for the Bermuda grass. Consequently, huge waste bunkers surround many fairways comprising a desirable gritty firm sand. Beyond bunkers, water seems to be everywhere and comes into play on twelve holes. Perhaps this explains abundance and the variety of birds.
The island green on the par3 148-yard sixth was a favorite. And not only because a sassy Iguana sauntering across the green captivated us.
Pleasant views from the 45,000 sq. ft. clubhouse with inexpensive margaritas end a wonderful day. A convenient resort course with plenty of water and abundant sand, El Tigre Golf Club is easy access from the hotels.
Explore other Mexico golf courses from Quintessential Golf Magazine.