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Quivira Golf Club Celebrates its 4th Anniversary

Quivira Golf Club Celebrates its 4th Anniversary

It was four years ago that golf legend and course designer Jack Nicklaus cut the ribbon at Quivira Golf Club, his sixth and by far his most impressive creation in Los Cabos.

Looking back, it’s a miracle the gravity-defying course ever got built. A few of the holes tiptoe along sheer granite cliffs 275 feet above the surf that would induce vertigo in the less courageous. Only a visionary could conceive a routing that scales the flank of a mountain, meanders across Saharan sand dunes, skirts rocky arroyos, and sidetracks into rolling desert foothills.

Of course, Nicklaus is an old hand at “massaging” a site and extracting from the land his idea of what a golf course should be. Judging from his handiwork at Quivira, he was not afraid at age 74 to let his creative side shine through.  Quivira, in fact, may be the most daring, eclectic course Jack has ever built. For starters, it has the fewest bunkers and the single smallest green (at No. 13) of any course on his resume. The heart-stopping front nine is par 34. The brawnier but equally dramatic back nine is par 38. It’s another departure from the norm for Jack, who let the site dictate where the holes should go. 

In addition to its heroic scenarios and one-of-a-kind setting, Quivira offers more oceanfront exposure than any other course in Cabo. Indeed, all 18 holes feature panoramic views of the Pacific, which swells with breaching whales in the winter months. Quivira’s stature as a memorable test of golf was recognized this year by the raters at Golf Digest, who voted Quivira to the magazine’s “World’s 100 Greatest Golf Courses” list.

Asked after the course opening ceremonies in 2014 how Quivira would impact his legacy, Nicklaus said he expected public reaction to the course to be very mixed. 

“I think some people will think it’s the most spectacular golf course and the best golf course they have ever seen,” he said. “I think other people will say, ‘You have got to be kidding.’ I don’t think there will be a lot of middle ground.  I think you will either love it or hate it.” Suffice to say, most players love it.

Then as now, Nicklaus believed the property was too unique to try to manufacture a resort golf course suited solely for high-handicappers. “It was a golf course that you had to take advantage of all the spectacular situations you had and be they too difficult or not, you had to take advantage of it.  It was just too unbelievable.”

This from a seasoned designer who gets first crack at the choicest locations for golf; this from a man who has seen or played every great course in the world.

The average duffer may lose a sleeve or two of balls on a typically breezy day at Quivira, but he (or she) may not care. It’s the price of a magic carpet ride on the most dazzling course in Los Cabos.