As golf booms in Cabo, Querencia unveils plans for a second course

A coastal view from Querencia, one of the few fully private courses in Cabo

Tom Fazio's original design at Querencia runs along bluffs overlooking the Sea of Cortez.

Courtesy of Querencia

Twenty-five years ago this spring, Tom Fazio broke ground on his first golf course in Mexico, a rollicking design set atop the seaside bluffs of San Jose del Cabo, on the Baja Peninsula.  

At the time, Fazio was long-established as a leading figure in his field, and Cabo itself was fast gaining recognition as a marquee golf destination.  

“There were already a number of fine courses in the area, and it was clear that others would soon be coming,” Fazio says. “So it was especially important for me that we had a great location and that we could execute a quality design that would stand out as unique.”  

Done and done.   

From the day it opened, in 2001, the course, Querencia, drew glowing reviews and international attention. “We knew we had something special,” says Jorge Carrera, CEO and partner. “And that has only proven itself to be more true over the years.”  

As part of the ribbon-cutting celebrations, Phil Mickelson and Sergio Garcia winged in to film an episode of Shell’s Wonderful World of Golf, a made-for-TV match that gave fans at home a glimpse of a one-of-a-kind layout, with emerald fairways etched across a high-desert landscape overlooking the Sea of Cortez.   

In the decades since, as Cabo has boomed with resort golf developments, Querencia has remained a rarity. A fixture on best-of architecture lists, it is also one of just two fully private courses in the region, the centerpiece of a refined but relaxed residential and beach club community that marries great golf with an array of alluring activities and amenities.   

With more golf now on the way.

The newly opened Beach Club at Querencia, Cabo
The newly opened private beach club at Querencia sits on a picturesque, swimmable beach. Courtesy of Querencia

A quarter-century after Fazio first set foot in Cabo, Carrera and the Querencia team have welcomed the architect back to design a second course, a complement to the original, slated to open in 2026.  

“As an architect, you never want to repeat yourself, and we haven’t here,” Fazio says. “The common denominator is the ocean. That’s what’s really special, and capturing the views and the setting is what is so important.”  

Like its older sibling, the new course will seize upon its desert-meets-sea surrounds, but rather than run largely atop the bluffs, it will dip and rise through varied terrain, winding into hills, skirting arroyos, and darting artfully along ridges that give way to panoramic coastal vistas. Where the first course is known as a “player’s course,” often visually intimidating off the tee, the new course, Fazio says, “will place more of an accent on second shots,” with smaller but less undulating greens.   

“Because there are a lot of elevation changes through valleys and ridges, there is a lot of movement to the land and natural definition to the holes,” Fazio says. “That creates interesting drama and variety.”  

Which, he notes, is the whole idea.  

“On every hole, you want people to say, ‘Wow, I can’t way to play this,’” Fazio says. “And when they’re finished, you want their first thought to be, ‘Can we go play again?'”

While Querencia places golf front and center, its appeal extends beyond the game. Family-friendly amenities and experiences abound, from pickle ball courts, swimming pools and hiking and biking trails to a regular Speaker Series that draws luminaries in the fields of business, art, science, sports and more.  

Golf course aerials
The 12 courses our staff can’t wait to play in 2024
By: Jessica Marksbury

The goal, Querencia chairman Tom McCloskey says, is to ensure that everyone feels a sense of community while “experiencing the local charm of Mexico and finding respite for mind, body and spirit.”  

Querencia’s newly opened Beach Club, situated on a picturesque, swimmable beach and featuring numerous oceanside dining options, offers a ready outlet for surfing, stand-up paddle-boarding, or simple relaxation in a cabana beside either of two family-friendly pools.

As work proceeds on the second 18-hole course, Querencia is also building a new Canyon Club, which will serve as a family hub. The first phase of its construction will include an outdoor skate park, a pump track, a basketball court and a soccer field, while the second phase will bring a trampoline park, a climbing wall, a family pool, dining and an open-air cinema.  

All along, of course, there will be golf. Lots of golf.  

 “Querencia has always been known for being a very golf centric experience,” says director of golf Seth Westfall. “And that’s something that our membership — the devoted golfers and our more casual golfers — always enjoy.”  

Querencia is a private golf and beach club with homesites starting at $1.5 million and homes starting at $3 million. For more information, visit

Josh Sens Editor

A golf, food and travel writer, Josh Sens has been a GOLF Magazine contributor since 2004 and now contributes across all of GOLF’s platforms. His work has been anthologized in The Best American Sportswriting. He is also the co-author, with Sammy Hagar, of Are We Having Any Fun Yet: the Cooking and Partying Handbook.