Vacations are a time to relax, unwind and enjoy the spoils of our hard work. Where spa treatments and tee times are on the agenda, not conference calls and meetings. Where “I’ll have another” refers to cocktails not coffee, and suit and ties are bypassed for Bermuda shorts and boat shoes.

As often the case, these vacations have a lasting impression, and persuade people to make these destinations a permanent residence either before or after retirement. This is especially true in popular locales such as San Antonio, the Phoenix area and the Bahamas, and even in remote escapes, where peace and quiet reign supreme. Thankfully, these hotspots all boast wonderful paradises that many people call home.

The Abaco Club on Winding Bay

Located on the Bahamian island of Great Abaco, The Abaco Club on Winding Bay is a private, international sporting club situated on more than 500 acres. The Abaco Club offers a world of relaxation and five-star resort-style amenities for homeowners and visitors to enjoy – with a 2.5-mile private beach; a top-rated golf course; spectacular water, leisure and sporting activities; fine dining featuring fresh local fare; and world-class fishing. A true paradise by Southworth Development!

The Club’s unique “tropical links” golf course has been consistently ranked as one of the top courses in the Caribbean and Mexico. Designed by British course architects Donald Steel and Tom Mackenzie, the picturesque course is set against the sea with rugged rocks, sloping greens and lush flora throughout – and is often frequented by 2016 European Ryder Cup Captain and Abaco resident, Darren Clarke.

Residential options include Estate Lots ideal for beautiful custom homes with all the bells and whistles, luxurious two-and four-bedroom Cottages, and elegant one-bedroom Cabanas. The Abaco Club’s Estate Lots are in the east and west sections of the golf course, all with spectacular ocean views, and range from $3 – $4 million for one to two acres. The Cottages are semi-customizable plantation-style, single-family homes with golf and/or water views. The Cottages are available in two- to four-bedroom configurations, with interior design packages featuring island-inspired colors and furnishings. Approximately 2,800 square feet, the Cottages range from $2 – $3 million. Built approximately 650 square feet in size, The Cabanas are one-bedroom stand-alone buildings that offer golf course views, and comfortable indoor and outdoor spaces, and are priced at $375,000.

The Concession

The Concession Residences, Southwest Florida Gulf Coast’s premier, 1,200-acre, low-density luxury community is swiftly nearing lot sell out. Considered one of the most desirable gated-communities in the Florida Gulf Coast-area, The Concession offers privacy and exclusivity, paired with fabulous amenities and nearby proximity to Sarasota’s vibrant downtown. Set amid towering pines and sprawling century-old live oaks, the top luxury community offers magnificent home sites ranging from one-half to one acre-plus, featuring sparking lake or lush woodland preserve views.

The Concession features 236 total home sites, and there’s a neighborhood for every buyer – including Birkdale, nestled among majestic live oaks, natural hammocks and beautiful lakeside views; Nicklaus Manor, located within the heart of The Concession; Lindrick, which overlooks oak preserves and glistening lakes; and Parkstone Estates, premium tracts for grand building of 4,800-square-feet or larger luxury residences.

Residents are invited to join The Concession Golf Club, the nationally-ranked Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course designed in association with Tony Jacklin – named for the famous putt Nicklaus conceded to his European counterpart in the 1969 Ryder Cup, resulting in the first tie in Ryder Cup history. The 7,474-yard tournament-caliber layout winds between 500 acres of pristine Florida landscape.

Cordillera Ranch

Situated just 45 minutes from San Antonio and its famous downtown landmarks (Alamo and Riverwalk), Cordillera Ranch epitomizes understated Texas Hill Country elegance. The club boasts a Jack Nicklaus Signature Design golf course that consistently ranks among the top-5 layouts in the state. Its signature hole – the par-3 16th – is regarded as one of the best (and most beautiful) golf holes in the state of Texas.

However, Cordillera Ranch is not solely about golf; rather, the community boasts resort-style amenities and seven clubs that placate to anyone’s outdoor passions – Golf; Tennis and Swim; Spa and Athletic; Social, Rod and Gun; Equestrian; and River. Stable horses are available for trail rides through the backcountry, and an on-site outfitter offers guidance for navigating the multi-station skeet shooting range. Cordillera Ranch residents can even place a kayak in the Guadalupe River for a float trip, or bring along the kids for a little fishing expedition to create the ultimate getaway in your “backyard.”

Considered the premier address in the San Antonio area, Cordillera Ranch offers 0.25-acre villas, one- to 10-plus acre estates (including valley-view, golf course and Guadalupe River frontage), as well as hilltop home sites. Home prices start in the $700Ks, with the finest home sites topping at $1.5 million. Cordillera Ranch continues to grow at an impressive pace – with nearly 800 homes completed (and more than 1,200 lot sales) in the community. At final build-out, Cordillera Ranch will total approximately 2,500 homes and preserve 80 percent of the land in its natural Hill Country rustic state.

Exceptional amenities and resort-style member clubs, spacious lots and breathtaking scenery at every turn – living at Cordillera Ranch mirrors a vacation. And like a five-star resort, residents and members of Cordillera Ranch can spend days experiencing a plethora of outstanding outdoor experiences, all without living the cozy confines of this amazing community.

Desert Highlands

Considered Scottsdale’s premier private community and club, Desert Highlands majestically melds Sonoran Desert luxury with world-class golf, tennis, dining and concierge services. Located just 30 minutes from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, Desert Highlands is easily accessible for second and vacation homeowners, and only minutes away from famed Old Town Scottsdale and its myriad shops, restaurants and art galleries.

Homes range from $1.5 million to $4 million, and feature architecturally adapted styles and systems for life in America’s most vibrant desert. A residential remodel program offers investors the opportunity to have their club membership fee waived during the period in which they are restoring / upgrading their investment property.

Scottsdale may be known for its scene and a place to be seen, but there are also plenty of things to do within Desert Highlands. The club boasts a Jack Nicklaus Signature Design that hosted the first two Skins Games back in 1983-84, and is considered one of the most picturesque in the Valley of the Sun. Later this year, the golf course will undergo a $7 million renovation by Nicklaus Design that will include an updated irrigation system and upgraded cart paths. Also found at Desert Highlands is an 18-hole putting course, an award-winning Racquet Club with 13 courts, and a 7,000 square-foot Wellness Center.

Cresswind at PGA Village Verano

Nestled in the premier PGA Village area of Port St. Lucie, Florida, Kolter Homes’ Cresswind at PGA Village Verano is a gated, resort-style community for those 55 and older who want to live in luxury while leading an active and social lifestyle. The community offers resident-exclusive amenities along with golf cart access to PGA Golf Club’s 54 holes of championship golf; and coming soon, South Florida’s largest private pickleball center.

Less than an hour north of the Palm Beaches and approximately 90 minutes south of Orlando, PGA Village Verano combines luxury and low-maintenance living with single-family homes priced from the mid-$200s to $500s. The ideal location on the Treasure Coast allows for convenient access to 21 miles of award-winning white sand beaches… not to mention the fine selection of shopping, dining and recreational activities.

As a gated, age-restricted neighborhood, residing within the larger PGA Village Verano community, Cresswind residents have access to all the resort-style amenities in the neighborhood in addition to the Cresswind Oasis – a private pool and sundeck for when residents are looking to relax on a smaller scale. The heart of PGA Village Verano is Club Talavera, a 40,000 square foot amenity campus consisting of fitness and social clubhouses. At the Social Center, neighbors and friends come together to enjoy daily activities facilitated by the full-time Lifestyle and Activities Directors with arts & crafts, a ballroom, lounge, billiards, cards, life-long learning auditorium and a demonstration kitchen. When it comes to fitness, residents have access to a junior-Olympic sized indoor lap pool, resort-style outdoor pool, Har-Tru tennis courts, fully equipped fitness center with a yoga room and sauna, and more.

The proximity to PGA Golf Club coupled with the new Cresswind Pickleball Center makes this neighborhood perfect for those wanting to enjoy the best of all worlds. The new facility will have 27 pickleball courts, including a center-court for tournaments, multiple viewing areas with spectator seating, and an event lawn with pavilion area. On the golf side, all Kolter new homebuyers receive a social membership to PGA Golf Club and have the option for reduced golf membership fees to enjoy the three decorated courses designed by Tom Fazio and Pete Dye.

Homebuyers can choose from an award-winning selection of two- to-four-bedroom single-family homes that range from approximately 1,600 a/c square feet to over 3,500 a/c square feet. Kolter quality-built homes include the latest in energy-efficient, healthy home and smart tech features. The Kolter Design Center provides residents personalization an option from luxury countertops and appliances in their kitchen to designer finishes in their bathroom, so individuals can truly build the luxury home of their dreams.

Sailfish Point

Florida’s Treasure Coast is fast becoming a popular locale for vacationers… and eventual residents… thanks to a coastal luxury enclave only minutes from the relaxing town of Stuart. With so many falling in love with this magical area of Florida over the years, being able to call Sailfish Point home is a dream-come-true for these fortunate residents.

Sailfish Point offers an array of residences for those who prefer to hang their (wide-brimmed fishing) hat and make the area home (or second home). Situated on South Florida’s Hutchinson Island, just 45 minutes north of Palm Beach, this 532-acre private, member-owned community defines luxury living. Surrounded almost entirely by water, Sailfish Point offers stunning and secluded properties with exclusive waterfront access to the Atlantic Ocean, Indian River and St. Lucie Inlet. The oceanfront neighborhood features 520 distinctive homes, including spacious beachfront properties, intimate condos, golf villas and townhomes with private boat slips.

Widely recognized as the premier golf and boating community on Florida’s Atlantic coast, Sailfish Point is home to several five-star resort-style amenities including a newly-renovated 60,000 square-foot clubhouse with multiple dining options, a fitness center, multiple pools, eight Har-Tru tennis courts and five miles of white sand beach.

Sailfish Point’s full-service spa offers one of only two luxury SALT therapy rooms in the country. Residents also have access to a nationally-ranked Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course with every hole on the par-72 course boasting a water view and gulf stream breezes.