Designed as a portal into the landscape, history, and rich multi-cultural identity of the region, the recently opened Conrad Punta de Mita is designed to offer immersion in Mexico’s Pacific coast. The resort’s layout pays homage to the traditions of the indigenous Huichol people who have inhabited the mountains of central Mexico for more than 15,000 years.
“From thoughtfully designed rooms to unique restaurant concepts driven by age-old recipes and enriching programming, we tapped deep into the region’s local heritage to provide an experience driven by exceptional service that meets the demand of today’s discerning traveler,” notes General Manager Marco Tabet.
Almost every resort vantage point, including guest rooms, offers views of the dramatic coastline, majestic Sierra Madre mountains, and palm trees that dance in the breeze. The resort’s nature-centric design encourages wellness and reflects a core belief of the Huichol that transformation and personal development occur through connection to nature. This admiration of nature is mirrored in the resort’s open-air common spaces including its luxurious pools, four dining venues, and indoor/outdoor spa.
A labyrinth of paths intertwines the shimmering swimming pools surrounded by woven wood cabanas and chaise lounges half-submerged in water offering the coolest way to sunbathe.
The overall design of Conrad Punta de Mita nourishes the mind and soul, but it is the cuisine that nourishes the body. All four restaurant menus and spaces pay tribute to age-old techniques and flavors of the local region. Executive Chef Victor Palma takes great delight in his position researching ancient ingredients to incorporate into his aromatic and enchanting cuisine.
The specialty restaurant Codex, lying at the resort’s edge, creates a sense of wonder and intimacy through a curated dining experience. Guests enter a forest of mangroves before reaching an entry with four fountains. Here they are handed a candle and asked to turn to each source of water for a gratitude ritual. Next, guests enter the dining room which rests on an elevated wood deck beneath an intricate bamboo ceiling. An open “window” to the ocean completes the hypnotic embrace … and the culinary journey has not even begun.
Codex, inspired by the ancient Aztec book of herbs, ‘Codice,’ features traditional Mexican fare prepared with locally sourced ingredients. The seasonal Full Moon Experience offers a menu directed by the phases of the moon, on-property fermented mezcal tasting, and a discussion with local farmers on the health benefits of their crops and herbs used to prepare the meal. This is not just dinner, this is a true culinary escapade.
The open-air Mezquite, one of our favorite restaurants, and just up the beach from Codex allows guests to dine on delicacies while toes rest in the sand. For lunch one day, we enjoyed a true sea-to-table affair, the Zarandeado experience, led by Executive Chef Palma. Fishermen from a local village brought their fresh catch for the chef to prepare one of Nayarit’s classic specialties, Red Snapper a-la-Zarandeado. This 500-year-old method of grilling fish over hot coals incorporates an abundance of spices and a “flipping” of the fish. We assembled fish tacos with the succulent grilled meat, salsas, guacamole, and pickled onions—Buena comida! Don’t miss Mezquite’s fresh grilled octopus and assortment of delicious salads (we recommend the quinoa with feta, green apple, and peas in a savory sesame dressing or the roasted squash with gorgonzola and arugula in a light dressing with a hint of vanilla.) The traditional post-dinner charcoal popsicle is always a hit with guests and has the added benefit of aiding digestion.
Start your mornings on Arbol’s patio and embrace nature while perched above the expansive grounds overlooking the pools and beach. Fortify your body with the avocado toast accented with delicious chunks of lobster or with the stuffed Chile Relleno, a popular choice. End evenings in the Agave Studio just off of Arbol’s entrance. Spirit aficionado and the resort’s Food and Beverage manager Ana Martinez will lead you on a journey of Mexico’s agave introducing you to the differences between Mexico’s well-known spirits with samplings of several different varieties including tequila, mezcal, and raicilla. You’ll even sample a sotol laced with a bit of viper venom.
Last but not least and at the social heart of the resort, lies the open-air Paleta. A woven wood ceiling embodies a design in honor of the Huichol allowing light to enter and dance in patterns across the floor. My go-to here was the poke bowl with melt-in-your-mouth tuna, avocado, and Chile serrano—in one word—divine.
The celebration of tradition and nature does not end with the resort’s overall design or with the restaurants’ cuisine. The indoor/outdoor 10,000-square-foot Conrad Spa enhances wellness and mindfulness through indigenous rituals and natural elements. Upon entry, guests will find the air permeated with a customized smell that is spellbindingly glorious. Guests are then led through a vine encased tunnel to outdoor hummingbird nest-like cocoon treatment rooms handwoven from local wood. Therapists use a collection of rituals and therapies inspired by ancient traditions, local flora, medicinal herbs, essential oils, and extracts for an experience one is not likely to forget.
For the adventurous, the spa also features a traditional clay Temazcal or “house of heat” providing a cleansing experience for body, mind, and spirit that has been a tradition within Mexican culture for over 1,000 years. The resident shaman awaits your arrival.
If you can tear yourself away from the spa, pools, and beach, the resort also boasts a 24-hour state-of-the-art fitness facility overlooking the perfectly manicured grounds.
While all of the amenities are outstanding, I would be remiss not to extoll the tremendous virtues of Conrad’s people. We found everyone from the general manager and executive chef to our stewards at the pool (Julio and Alfonso), to be extremely friendly and conscious of our every need. It is often the people that can make a place that much more special.
Speaking of special, on our last evening my daughter suggested we walk along the beach despite the rain. Sea turtles favor this two-mile stretch of beach for laying eggs and earlier in the day we noticed several signs marking nests. On our sunset stroll (and to our absolute delight) we came across a nest of hatchlings making their way out of the sand and across the beach. My daughter dashed off to alert hotel staff and then we all spent 45 minutes shooing away crabs and birds, watching these tiny turtles head to their watery new home. At first, the little creatures tumbled and tossed in the waves but as soon as they were upright they took off as if they had been swimming for years. We bid farewell to the turtles, thanking them for this extraordinary experience which was the penultimate moment for a trip full of truly magical moments. Visit Conrad when you can, your magical moments await.
To book now and for more information, visit conradpuntademita.com. Conrad offers serenity in a safe environment, embracing precautionary measures such as masks, hand sanitizer, temperature checks, sanitizing sprays, and Hilton CleanStay standards.