The resort town of Puerto Peñasco – commonly known as “Rocky Point” – lies around 100 kilometres south of the border with Arizona, on the northern coast of the Sea of Cortez, along the relatively narrow strip of land connecting the Baja California peninsula with the rest of Mexico.
Since the start of the new millennium, there’s been a big push to develop the town’s tourism potential and the influx of visitors has resulted in the provision of new sporting amenities such as the 18-hole layout at Las Palomas Beach Resort.
The course sits to the west of the town, where the sandy-soiled fairways are routed around a few man-made irrigation lakes and large swathes of wasteland areas as they weave their way towards lightly bunkered green sites.
Architect Forrest Richardson gave us his permission to use the following edited extract from his company website:
The story of The Links at Las Palomas began with passion. Architects Forrest Richardson and Arthur Jack Snyder spent endless hours studying the land here. Their objective was to find the perfect land for an 18-hole course and in the end their design included nineteen holes — an extra "bonus hole" was "too perfect" not to be built.
As the course came to life, shaping and details were brought to the surface. While it appeared they were 'creating' a golf course, both men admitted that their role was just as much about 'finding' a golf course.
For Richardson, the course would eventually become symbolic of his long association with Snyder. Sadly, Snyder passed away in 2005, just as the first turf was being established at the course.
Although Jack Snyder got to see some of his vision come to life, it was up to Richardson to put the finishing touches on the work and he became a temporary resident in Peñasco, working alongside his trusted shapers, sculpting the course from the natural terrain.
Your journey at The Links at Las Palomas begins from atop a ridge. In the distance are a sprinkling of sand dunes and lagoons. From here the course meanders back into the dunes on two more occasions. Periodically, the Sonoran Desert gives way to views of the Sea of Cortez.
The Links at Las Palomas is one of the first courses ever planted with a new variety of grass called Sea Dwarf Paspalum. Known for its perfect carpet-like appearance, Paspalum originated in South Africa along natural shorelines and marshes. It is ideal for such golf. Fast fairways and slick putting surfaces. Two qualities that go hand-in-hand to create a true links experience.