Sunday, January 1, 2006
The Desert West
If there's one thing you should know about golf in the magnificent desert West, heed the following statement: In the desert West, you don't play golf, you experience it.With Las Vegas having more than 50, Palm Springs with 100-plus and the Phoenix/Scottsdale/Mesa area totaling somewhere near 200 golf courses, it’s no wonder millions of golfers each year flock to these three desert golf boomtowns. It’s culture shock for many once they get there, as golfers from all over the world marvel at the union between harsh desert topography and the soft, caressing ribbons of fairway and greens that make up each golf oasis. Unlike other destinations, where golf has a more natural feel, desert golf is a vivid sparring match between man-made creations and the consuming desert barrenness. This duel, when choreographed carefully by many of the world’s greatest course architects, results in a vast array of truly exciting holes that hopscotch desert canyons, traverse dry washes and jog around huge granite boulders. Oh, and a series of enormous and daunting man-made lakes also hold precedence at many golf courses as well, thus fooling unsuspecting golfers who imagine there’s only waterless courses in the desert. The sunshine is predictable (in a good way, of course), so golf course superintendents are able to fine-tune their course conditioning in ways that no other place on Earth can rival. Like mentioned, golf in the desert West isn’t played, it’s experienced.
Upon arrival at virtually every golf resort or stand-alone golf club, one can expect to find among the country’s most attentive staffs, the most glamorous golf shops, renowned restaurants (on-site), country-club-for-a-day amenities and practice centers that are consistently ranked among the best in the country. A typical desert golf experience begins with a warm morning round, a generous lunch, relaxation by the pool and an exquisite dinner followed by some of the world’s most sought-after evening entertainment.
Like the golf, the guest service you’ll find in the desert is unlike anywhere else. At most locations it won’t feel like club staffs are working for you; instead, you’ll feel as if they’re longtime friends who have invited you to their playground for fun in the sun and some evening R&R. When you leave, you’ll do so with a collection of new friends eager for your return visit.
By the way, golf isn’t all there is to do in the desert—shopping, spas, gambling, gourmet cuisine and other sinful self-indulgences are endlessly available for the nongolfing or golfing travel companion. Night or day, there’s always something to see and do, no matter what corner of the desert you’re in.
When To Go
Las Vegas, Palm Springs and the Phoenix Metro area, although spread out across three states, all have very similar weather patterns throughout the year. Obviously, this is the desert, and the summers here might be a little too hot for some golfers. But, if you can take the heat, you’ll be able to take advantage of rock-bottom room rates and green fees. The rest of the year, as you can see, is perfect.
Combined (High/Low, °F)
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