Resort Golf Challenges

By: Mel Barosay

There is a new trend in golf today and it is found at the resort-style golf course. Such courses are popping up around established private, semi-private and public golf links already notably apparent for years. In comparison to country club golf for the wealthier, semi-private golf for the privileged and public courses which cater more to the beginner or less serious advocates of the sport, the resort-style golf courses have addressed a new market of golf to take the game to the next level.

Some of this has been accomplished through strategic locations in pristine settings, rolling terrains which follow canyon ridge lines, deceptive panoramic views, meandering fairways, shots that required carry over arroyos, barrancas and ravines to avoid disaster, and picturesque layouts on the edge of rivers, lakes and oceans. Along with adding the name of a famous golf course architect like Pete Dye, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nichalaus, Tom Fazio, Billy Casper, to name a few, building-in difficultly factors such as length, fast and angulating putting surfaces, pot bunker fairways, and a variety of elevated tees and elevation changes, the golfer is faced with more challenges, thrills, gratification and disappointment while being given the incentive to perform at their peak.

After playing a variety of the resort-style golf courses the past year, this reporter identifies this new breed of courses by a few other features not usually found in the status quo. For instance, first and foremost, the new competition created by the progression in this facet of the sport has given birth to assertive marketing efforts.

Sales, marketing and public relation executives are now prevalent in most resort-style golf operations. Many resort-style courses are now associated or owned by a hotel enterprise.

Numerous celebrity and charity tournaments, as well as professional tour exhibitions are held at such facilities, taking advantage of the appeal and fascination of the courses themselves. Resort-style golf facilities are usually built with several course layouts. Typically two 18-hole courses are the norms, but it is quite common to play at a 27-hole facility, utilizing only two-thirds of its holes for a round.

Four to five levels of tee boxes are provided in comparison to the three levels found at older and more traditional courses, thus ensuring the right comfort level for every player. Resort-style courses thrive on maximizing guest satisfaction, and the most common way known to man is through warm hospitality.

This reporter actually received a Christmas card from Lost Canyons, one of the subjects later to be mentioned in this article. Other features to optimize the overall guest experience are forecaddie programs which provide club selection, yardage, green readings, strategies and tips during the round, in addition to golf instruction for juniors, groups and individuals taught by PGA-certified professionals. An avid golfer with a certain amount of golf etiquette appreciates these new trends. This is especially true since private country clubs offer some of these luxuries and semi-private courses may offer other similar benefits, but none will match-up with all these amenities in one package without the heavy price and commitment found with membership organizations.

Jetsetters Magazine Golf MallLost Canyons is a one of the newest and most exciting resort-style golf courses to be built. Nestled in the hills of Simi Valley, California, it has opened the 18-hole Sky Course in Fall 2000 with the Shadow Course scheduled to open in Winter 2001. The 7250 yards, rating of 76.1, Slope of 149, Pete Dye Design with special consulting by Fred Couples has already hosted the Playboy Scramble Charity televised on Fox Sports and integrates nostalgia from the long running television show "Little House on the Prairie" which used this same plot of scenic land to film the popular series.

Golfers are reminded of the famous TV show and years past as they play the course with the sights of old, rusty horse and manual-operated farm equipment, as well as dilapidated structures of farms houses and barns held up by weathered wood. Along with memorabilia from the old televisions sets, small creeks with rustic wooden bridges built over narrow secluded bellows are found, in addition to oak trees and natural shrubbery. Simi Valley, which translates into "smoke valley" by the origin settlers, the Chumash Indians, is part of the Santa Susana Mountains. Its natural terrain within the mountain range contains tranquil valleys and dramatic canyons with breathtaking views. Ascending up hills, using everything you own in your bag to reach the greenFree Articles, this course places a premium on accuracy and positioning.

Golf Guide
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 

» More on Golf Guide
 



Share this article :
Click to see more related articles