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Welcome to paradise.

Beautiful beaches, a winding series of crystal-clear pools and the Iberostar Paraiso Golf Club, a course of such amazing quality it hosted Big Break: Mexico in 2013.

By Tim Baines. The Mayan Riviera’s Iberostar Paraiso, a massive complex of five amazing resorts – Maya, Grand, Paraiso Beach, Del Mar and Lindo – is truly fun in the sun. Located 20 km or so north of Playa del Carmen, Iberostar Paraiso is a year-round beauty, with five-star service and food and that wonderful Mexican hospitality that always seems to feature a friendly, "Hola."

The Iberostar Paraiso will host 50 ClubEG golfers Feb. 28-March 7. Among the excited vacationers will be PGA of Canada professional Dave McDonald (the 2015-16 Zone Championship winner) and ClubEG vice-president and professional Andy Rajhathy.

But back to the Iberostar Paraiso. The Caribbean Sea surrounds the shores of this island of spectacular beaches that are perfect for relaxation as they are far from the crowds and surrounded by lush vegetation.

We played a round with Director of Golf Greg Bond, an American who fell in love with Mexico.

“It’s a wonderful place, I've been here almost 15 years," he said. "The weather is almost always great. Being in Cancun, Mayan Riviera, Playa del Carmen ... it’s fantastic. I love Mexico. The people are very friendly.

“If you know people who have played golf in Mexico, ask them. Look at Trip Advisor and the comments they have. You’ll find out quickly what the quality golf courses are and there are a lot of them, several of them here in this destination.

So how about the golf course?

“It’s the only golf course that has such dramatic vertical movement," said Bond. "Every hole is up and down and it’s mounded. That’s very unique to the area. The rockwork, the stonework to the teeboxes, it’s all part of the ambiance and it ties into sort of the Mayan theme. It’s in excellent condition 365 days a year. It’s cut right out of the jungle. You’ll see a lot of wild life here. We have spider monkeys, deer, boa constrictors – we have one on No. 5, it’s about 18 feet long."

A PB Dye course, it remains true to the designer's golf course personality.

“If you talk with him, he’ll tell you if you move a little bit of dirt, it looks fake," said Bond. If you move a lot of dirt, it looks natural. He moved a lot of dirt here and it looks like it’s natural. He created a great landscape for the golf course."

I’ve asked him what he thought the signature hole was. He told me he built 18 of them here. My personal favourite is No. 9. It’s so challenging, so difficult, it’s so unique.

“We’re very lucky with this golf course. You can make this as challenging as you want it. You can make it more player friendly by moving forward on the tees. I’ve played probably 1,100 or 1,200 golf courses in my life. This is one of the very best as far as looking at all the shots. Here, you have to play every shot in the book. That makes good golf in my book – when you can challenge the tour professional and the beginning player can also play. This is the best maintained golf course that you’ll probably find in Mexico."

When we talk about all-inclusive, add Iberostar's golf course into that. When you're a guest at the resort and you add the golf package, the golf, the cart, the driving range, the food, the booze, it's all included. Everything. And they really do take good care of you.

“You come here, you’re all in," said Bond. "People like that, OK I’m going to spend $5 or $6 for a beer, no, here, just have what you want and you don’t have to worry about it. You don’t have to worry about watching your pennies on consumption and we’ve had great feedback on this type of service."

“Our trademark is customer service. That’s what people are expecting. They want to come here, have a great time and have people take care of them. We do our homework so when people come here it’s seamless."

Canadians, like the ClubEG group, are an important part of business for the resort and the golf course.

“From the golf side, it depends on the time of year, but it’s probably 10-12% of my business," said Bond. "U.S. is about 80%. This year may jump up to about 14%. We've had an incredible flux of Canadians."

The resort includes free WIFI, some amazing a la carte restaurants, great nightlife, including the most vibrant all-inclusive disco I've come across and all the bells and whistles that come with five-star treatment.

Soon enough, ClubEG will get a first-hand taste of elegance in paradise.

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