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GOLF VACATIONS JANUARY 2011

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contents I january 2011

cover

stories

10

I Played Paradise in the South Pacific

16

La Quinta Resort and Club

20

San Diego’s Sweet Spot For Golf

24

L.A. Golf: Hurray For Hollywood

10

by Chuck Miller, “The Traveling Guy”

I had always hoped to visit the South Pacific island nation of Fiji. When a chance introduction to members of Tourism Fiji opened up an opportunity for me to visit, I jumped at the chance.

by Katie Denbo

When La Quinta Resort and Club opened in 1926, it provided a unique escape set in the shadows of the Santa Rosa Mountains for some of the biggest names in Hollywood.

by Bob Mondo

16

With its idyllic weather and 93 golf courses in every conceivable setting - from mountains to desert to ocean - it's no wonder Golf Digest once named San Diego one of the top 50 golf destinations in the world.

by Katie Denbo

It's often forgotten that the Los Angeles area offers one of the most diverse selections of golf in California.

departments

20

8 ChipShots Updates From The World Of Golf & Travel

23 Destinations Your Link To Great Resort Golf Locales

28 Sweet Stuff

by Terry Ross

TourEdge Exotics, Tiger Shark Golf, The Smart Glove

on the cover: Spectacular Golf at PGA West in La Quinta, CA

24 4

G O L F VA C AT I O N S • J A N U A R Y 2 0 1 1

www.golfvacationsmag.com


S t ut t er in g di dn’ t ben ch Bob Love

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CONTRIBUTINGWRITERS Katie Denbo is the editor and publisher of FORE Magazine, the official publication of the Southern California Golf Association. A blogger and golf photographer by hobby, she is a member of the Golf Writers Association of America and the California Golf Writers and Broadcasters Association, and has written about and traveled to golf resorts and properties all over the western United States and Canada. Visit Katieshack, Katie's golf blog, at katieshack.com, and follow her on Twitter at @kdenbo. Executive Editor Jeffrey Diaz

Chuck Miller (The Traveling Guy) a Southern California native and 11 handicap golfer at Shadowridge Country Club in Vista, California, writes about golf for newspapers, magazines and internet travel sites. His business background includes developing the initial international distribution network for Adams Golf.

Bob Mondo recently moved to the sunny climate of Florida from his lifelong home in Chicago to continue his avid passion for boating, fishing and of course, the elusive round with that little white dimpled ball. A past columnist with Southern California Golf Newspaper, Bob currently co-publishes Coastal Angler Magazine.

Terry Ross has covered sports as both a print and radio journalist for more than 35 years, and also has served as a consultant to the golf industry in a variety of capacities. He has been a regular columnist for the Long Beach Business Journal and is based in Orange County, California.

Associate Editor Terry Ross Features Editor Larry Feldman

Senior Writers Tom LaMarre Fred Robledo For Editorial: call: (760) 774-2655 e-mail: INFO@GolfVacationsMag.com

Regional Advertising Los Angeles • 949-279-7801 Terry Ross - terryross@cox.net

Atlanta • 770-971-1616 John Reock - reock@mindspring.com

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Destiny Media, LLC President/CEO James A. Diaz

Golf Vacations Magazine is published in digital format monthly and distributed online to over 1,000,000 golfer’s email inboxes each issue. Entire contents of this publication is copyright 2011 SportsMedia Publications, all rights reserved and may not be reproduced in any manner, in whole or in part, without written permission from the publisher. www.golfvacationsmag.com


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U p d a t e s f r o m t h e Wo r l d o f G o l f & Tr a v e l >> MIDAS ROCKEFELLER TOUCH CONTINUES IN THE CARIBBEAN RockResorts International, LLC, a subsidiary of Vail Resorts, Inc., is adding Xandari by the Pacific, considered a resort jewel, to its collection of luxury lodges in Costa Rica. Founded in 1956 in the Caribbean by Laurence S. Rockefeller, RockResorts was acquired and re-launched by Vail Resorts in 2001. RockResorts says Vail Resorts' lodging division will take over management of hotel operations. After the holiday season, the hotel's name will change from Xandari by the Pacific Resort and Spa on Playa Esterillos Estes to Alma del Pacifico Hotel. During spring and summer 2011, a thorough renovation of the property is planned for all common areas, guestrooms, the spa and food and beverage outlets. The renovation will be followed by the re-launch of the property under the RockResorts brand with the official name of Alma del Pacifico Hotel, A RockResort. Future plans at Del Pacifico at Esterillos include an equestrian center, 18hole golf course, boutique hotel and additional residential units. Located on Playa Esterillos Este, the hotel and the master planned development are located halfway between Jaco Beach and Manuel Antonio National Park.

Del Pacifico at Esterillos is a 700-acre master planned resort community designed by award-winning architect Dhiru Thandani with renowned town planner, Leon Krier, contributing to the design and plan for La Prada, the town center for the seaside community. Currently there are 10 RockResort properties located in Vail, Beaver Creek, Aspen, Jackson Hole, Breckenridge, Santa Fe, Miami and St. Lucia. 8

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Half Moon in Rose Hall, Jamaica will become a RockResort on Jan. 1, 2011 followed by Balcones del Atlántico in the Dominican Republic and Alma del Pacifico Hotel in Costa Rica.

GOLFTRIPGENIUS.COM ADDS FUN AND MEMORIES TO A GOLF TRIP WAYNE, PA - GolfTripGenius.com announced the introduction of Trip Book, a feature of its web-based service that helps golfers enjoy golf travel even more and bring home a book full of memories. Trip Book creates an electronic album where logistical information, player profiles with photos, tee sheets, scorecards, tournament details and photographs can be stored for reference during and long after the golf trip. The Trip Book is a tool for keeping everyone organized and an album for enjoyment by all golfers. Introduced earlier this year, GolfTripGenius.com applies sophisticated yet easy-to-use software to help golfers plan golf trips, set up pairings and manage tournaments, scoring and expenses. Contents of a custom Trip Book are controlled by the golf trip captain, who enters the information for other players to view and chooses photographs to be presented in a private gallery section of the book. In addition to photographs, Trip Book also can store pre-trip information, such as the captain's invitation letter, player profiles, course information, scheduled tournaments, tee sheets and travel logistics. The captain controls both the content and the ordering of trip pages. Trip Book and the site's recently launched Apple iPad application are examples of the company's focus on "community and mobility," according to Mike Zisman, founder and CEO of GolfTripGenius.com. Trip Book is constructed automatically through a simple page menu selection process. To see a sample Trip Book, click here and for an introductory video, click here. Trip Book is included as part of Genius Edition, one of three services offered by GolfTripGenius, each with a different level of functionality and features.

chip shots FARMSTEAD GOLF LINKS ONE OF AMERICA’S 18 MOST FUN GOLF HOLES Farmstead Golf Links in Calabash, N.C., on the northern end of Myrtle Beach's Grand Strand, has one of the “most fun holes you can play in America,” according to an article in Golf Digest's January 2011 issue. Golf Digest Architecture Editor Ron Whitten selected Farmstead's closing hole as one of his “home run” holes, and his final pick in a stellar line-up of courses that feature floating targets, overstuffed greens and rocky challenges. The par 6 hole at 767 yards from the tips is “so impossibly long,” wrote Whitten, that “you tee off in South Carolina and putt out in North Carolina.” Farmstead Golf Links' mammoth 18th hole is the only par 6 on Myrtle Beach's Grand Strand. A favorite among visiting golfers and locals alike, it actually begins with a drive into a wide, sweeping fairway in South Carolina and concludes on a large undulating green in North Carolina. Although the dual-state, par 6 18th hole provides a memorable finish to the course, it's the other 17 holes that bring golfers back to Farmstead. The scenic course follows the natural contours of the coastal plain and its five sets of tees make it possible for all skill levels of golfers to have an enjoyable

round. A Willard Byrd and David Johnson design, the par 72 layout is framed by waist-high native grasses along several fairways, giving the course a unique look. The golf experience at Farmstead is enhanced by its 8,000-square foot Georgian style clubhouse that includes a full-service pro shop, grille and lounge. The clubhouse features a veranda that offers a spectacular view of the first tee and 18th green. Farmstead is less than a mile from its sister course, Meadowlands Golf Club, which was also designed by Byrd. More information about Farmstead is available at http://farmsteadgolflinks.com. www.golfvacationsmag.com


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THE CUISINE OF ITALY

“Combining Old-World Italian comfort food with personalized service, a congenial atmosphere and an extensive wine list, La Torretta excels as one of Arizona’s most impressive restaurants” — Dining Out

With a menu that utilizes the freshest and most authentic ingredients and pasta made fresh in-house daily, the restaurant’s culinary fare is consistently delicious and refreshing.Their Osso Buco,Taglio del Vitello Farcito con Quattro Farmagio and Veal Piccata have become local legends and inspired positive reviews from the Scottsdale Republic, the New Times, Guest Informant, TravelHost, and Scottsdale Magazine. The combination of La Torretta’s sophisticated interior and authentic food make it a prime candidate for intimate dinners to group celebrations of special occasions.

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“I P


Played Paradise in the South Pacific” Chuck “The Traveling Guy” Miller

FijiGolf


O

ver the years I have been fortunate to have traveled to all seven continents and 70 countries around the world. One country I had always hoped to visit, but never had, was the South Pacific island nation of Fiji. When a chance introduction to members of Tourism Fiji opened up an opportunity for me to visit Fiji recently, I jumped at the chance. As a golf and travel writer, I looked forward to checking out the golf scene, to learning about the Fijian culture, and to finding out about things to do and see when vacationing in Fiji. Since Fiji is a country made up of 332 islands covering 20,000 square miles, it was impossible to see everything I wanted to see during my 10 day visit. However, I did see and learn a great deal and would like to share some of my findings in this two-part series . . . Golfing and Vacationing in Fiji.

Writer Chuck Miller braving the tropical elements on the first tee at the Plantation Course at Musket Cove

Fiji is a nation of 900,000 people with 85% of its population living on its two largest islands, Viti Levu and Vanua Levu. It is a nation of diversity in people, geography, and lifestyle. Its population is primarily native Fijians and East Indians with a smattering of Chinese, Europeans and other Pacific Islanders. Fiji's geography has a little bit of everything . . . blue-green lagoons, lush rainforests, tall mountains, pine forests, miles and miles of white sand beaches, and wonderful friendly people. It is an environmentally conscious nation with energy efficient technology, a marine protected area and an unwritten rule that no high rise hotel or resort can be built taller than a coconut tree. It also has a variety of golf courses including a 9-hole course that can only be played when the tide is out.

Musket Cove

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www.golfvacationsmag.com


The pool at The Pearl Golf Course

Musket Cove's Plantation Island Course- Links Style Golf Amongst Coconut Palms During my visit, I had the opportunity to play three of Fiji's 14 golf courses, five of which are 18-hole championship length and nine which are shorter 9-hole courses. The first course I played was the 9hole Plantation Island Course on 600-acre Malolo Lailia Island, 45 minutes by catamaran or 10 minutes by air from Port Denarau on Viti Levu, Fiji's main and largest island. It is a short 9-hole 2800-yard par 32 course with seven Par 4's ranging from 238 yards to 329 yards. Its two Par 3's are 180 yards and 196 yards. Designed and built by Ananda Madhwan, winner of the 1996 Nadi Fiji Open, it is a "Fiji Style" golf course, meaning it is very natural with fairways that are more like light rough, greens that are small and slow, and bunkers that are left unraked. I played with Joe Mar, General Manager of the Musket Cove Resort on the island. He explained that when a cyclone toppled hundreds of coconut palms on the island, rather than replant the trees, the golf course was designed and built. Although the course was dry because the only irrigation comes from the heavens above, and I was there in the dry season, I loved playing it. www.golfvacationsmag.com

Playing on the non-manicured conditions of the course which I have described to friends as "a links course amongst coconut palms", I got an insight into what golf must have been like for Scottish golfers when the game golf was in its infancy in and around St. Andrews. Despite the fact that the Plantation Course didn't have manicured fairways or large smooth undulating greens, it was an extremely fun course to play and challenging to say the least. One of the highlights while playing was watching three course employees play as if they were vying for a US Open title. They bombed their balls long and straight from the tees and chipped and putted with tremendous accuracy. I was told they played every day of the year and all shot in the low 30's for nine holes. Their excitement for the game, played on a "Fiji Style" course with used clubs and balls, was wonderful to see. We should all have the love for the game of golf as displayed by these three friends and golfing competitors. The course is located only minutes from the Musket Cove Resort on the island. Guests at the resort are "chauffeured" via golf cart to and from the resort when they wish to play. Before or after golf there are numerous other things to do at Musket Cove. Azure clear waters and seven miles of white untouched sandy beaches offer opportunities G O L F V A C A T I O N S • J A N U A R Y 2011

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The Pearl Golf Course

to swim, snorkel, scuba, sail, and kayak. Speedboats are at the ready for island hopping and yachts are available for sailing or fishing trips. Musket Cove's sheltered lagoon is a haven for visiting yachts from all over the world with more than 100 arriving yearly to participate in the annual Musket Cove Regatta. Musket Cove Resort is Fiji's oldest resort company operating for over 40 years. Its founder, Dick Smith was a pioneer in developing Fiji tourism which this year will see over 600,000 visitors travel to Fiji. Smith's original vision of a relaxed and peaceful lifestyle is still present at Musket Cove. Traditional thatched roofed Fijian "Bures" and larger two-bedroom villas at the resort offer quiet surroundings which have been updated with modern conveniences including air-conditioning. A selection of dining options, which include "Dick's Place" Bar & Bistro for breakfast, lunch and dinner, The Marina Coffee Cove for coffee and pastries, and the Ratu Nemani Island Bar, an open bar with a sand floor leading straight into the ocean, all are lay back in style as befits a relaxed and peaceful South Pacific island resort. For more information about the facilities, accommodations, and activities including golf at the Musket Cove Resort, visit their website at www.musketcovefiji.com. 14

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The Pearl Is A Gem The second course I played was The Pearl, a Robert Trent Jones, Jr. designed course which was built in 1974. In its heyday it was considered one of the top courses in the world. It's located about a half hour from Suva, Fiji's capital, and three hours from the International Airport in Nadi (pronounced Nandi). Set amongst tropical rainforests and winding canals, it plays to 6800 yards from the tips, 6350 from the Yellow Tees, and 5800 yards from the Red Tees. Sixty-seven bunkers dot the fairways and guard small greens. Golfing great Greg Norman has found the course to his liking over the years. He won the South Seas Classic there in 1979 at age 24 and the Pacific Harbor Golf Open there in 1983-1984. According to Course Manager Alan McCulloch, The Pearl is "one of the most adventurous courses in Fiji". Its lush jungle setting, with abundant shots around or over river, lake and lily pond hazards certainly made my golf game an adventure. My favorite hole was the scenic 152-yard Par 3 eighth hole which required an accurate tee shot over a small lake covered in flowering water lilies. Playing The Pearl was a real treat. It's a "must play" when you visit Fiji. After a very enjoyable round of golf, I returned to The Pearl www.golfvacationsmag.com


Resort which is only minutes away from the golf course. The resort advertises itself as a "boutique retreat" which I found to be quite accurate. It has a relaxed South Pacific atmosphere, quality accommodations, four restaurants serving Fijian and European menus, six bars, an excellent spa, and a warm friendly staff. As most resorts in Fiji, The Pearl offers a wide variety of water sports, sandy beaches, a large swimming pool and a close proximity to numerous sightseeing opportunities. While there, I was able to take a motorized canoe trip up the Navua River to visit the Koro Makawa village where I participated in a Kava ceremony, the ancient and sacred ceremony performed for visiting chiefs and important visitors. There I had the opportunity to meet a number of the villagers, most of whom are direct descendants of Englishman John Humphrey Danford who established the village in the early 1800's. The village is one of hundreds if not thousands of villages throughout Fiji which date back hundreds of years. Most of the villages are inhabited by 50 to 300 or more native Fijians who are governed by a Chief and a village spokesman. Every trip to Fiji should

include a village visit as such a visit will give you a better understanding of Fijian life and the importance family plays in the daily lives of the Fijian people. Other activities close to The Pearl include the opportunity to visit Suva, Fiji's capital; go for an exhilarating zip-line ride; surf Frigates Passage, one of the world's premier surf breaks; or take a jet boat safari ride. All are exceptional activities, both educational and thrilling. Five minutes from The Pearl you can visit the Arts Village to shop, watch a cultural show, and/or observe the famed fire-walkers of nearby Beqa Island walk across hot stones. Visit www.thepearlsouthpacific.com. for additional information about The Pearl Resort and Golf Course. For information about Fiji in general, visit www.fijime.com or www.TourismFiji.com. Next month, Part Two in this series will describe golf at Natadola Bay and Denarau Island golf courses, sites for the 2011 Asia Pacific Golf Confederation Teams Championship tournament also known as the Nomura Cup.

The Clubhouse at The Pearl Golf Course

www.golfvacationsmag.com

G O L F V A C A T I O N S • J A N U A R Y 2011

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RESORTREPORT

LA QUINTA RESORT & CLUB

DESERT HISTORY WITH MODERN

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www.golfvacationsmag.com


LA QUINTA, CALIFORNIA

By KatieDenbo

L

N LUXURIES

A QUINTA, CA. -- When La Quinta Resort and Club opened in 1926, it provided a unique escape set in the shadows of the Santa Rosa Mountains for some of the biggest names in Hollywood. Nearly 20 miles south of celebrity enclave Palm Springs on Interstate 10, it was a destination, by any definition, to those who chose to venture into the new desert oasis in search of refuge from the movie studios and privacy from fans. Today's La Quinta Resort celebrates the well known history, while incorporating the high-end amenities to which visitors have become accustomed. Vintage cars sit in the driveway, flanked by Ferraris. Classic movies, idealized decades ago at the resort, project on to the outside plaza. Live Spanish music and jazz tunes fill the evening for those enjoying cocktails around fire pits. Simply put? It's special. For all these reasons and more, La Quinta Resort was named North America's 2010 Golf Resort of the Year by the International Association of Golf Tour Operators, the global trade organization for the golf tourism industry. It seems that once guests visit the property, they're immediately planning a return trip.

La Quinta Resort: Classic Accommodations A quiet stroll through the ranch-style property reveals nearly 800 rooms spread across 45 acres, accented with groves of citrus trees. Red-tile roofed casitas, suites and villas are available, with most surrounding one of the resort's 41 pools and 53 jacuzzis -- often a stone's throw from the room's door. The rooms are appointed with gas fireplaces, plasma televisions and upscale linens, while bathrooms feature deep soaking tubs and large stall showers. Want to step back into a more simple time? Stay in one of the original casitas built in 1926. You could sleep in the same room where legendary movie director Frank Capra penned cinematic masterpieces like "It Happened One Night" and "It's a Wonderful Life." Capra considered La Quinta Resort as his inspiration and good luck charm. La Quinta Resort: PGA West and The Golf La Quinta Resort is well known for its Pete Dye-designed Mountain course and Dunes course -- the Mountain named as one of Golf Magazine's Top 100 Courses You Can Play. Not a sound can be heard from some of the back-nine holes on the Mountain Course; its idyllic setting among the iconic mountain ranges of Coachella Valley provides, arguably, some of the most peaceful holes in all of southern California. Combined with PGA West, which celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2011, La Quinta Resort offers golfers five public golf courses. The TPC Stadium Course, Jack Nicklaus Tournament Course and Greg Norman Course round out the public offerings. Another four golf course are available for members only. La Quinta Resort: The Recreation If guests are looking for it, it's likely La Quinta Resort has it. The 23,000-square-foot Spa La Quinta beckons travelers who seek relaxation with a full selection of body and face treatments. The Native Elements body scrub is supreme, as well as the massages. A quick dip in the jacuzzi or some time in the steam room is popular with spa visitors, too. Practice your backhand on one of the resort's 23 tennis courts, where you may spot a celebrity or two. Direct by past David Cup captain and coach Tom Gorman, the resort's tennis facility -- which includes five clay courts and 18 hard courts -– ranks one of the top 20 U.S. tennis resorts by Tennis Magazine. www.golfvacationsmag.com

G O L F V A C A T I O N S • J A N U A R Y 2011

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RESORTREPORT

(continued) And after a long day of activities, some retail therapy can be had at the La Quinta Resort Plaza. You'll find Polo Ralph Lauren, Brighton and Tommy Bahama among the resort's popular apparel and accessories shops, while a general store, children's store and art gallery are also open for perusal. Shops wrap around the lower-level plaza off the main drive, the perfect location to take in the resort's charm. After a day or a week at La Quinta Resort, it's difficult to drive away across its quaint, red pavers, surrounded by orange trees beneath sparkling white lights. But for all that is done -- and all that is left to see and do -- that return trip to the desert's legendary property arrives sooner than many guests expect.

TANTALIZE YOUR TASTE BUDS La Quinta Resort: Fine Dining Morgan's in the Desert, the resort's high-end restaurant, opened in 2009, but its popularity has quickly grown as a local destination and for guests who seek a memorable experience. James Beard award-winning chef Jimmy Schmidt creates seasonal menus that include salads, seafood, pastas and more, paired with eclectic and thorough offerings of wine and cocktails served in the Piano Bar, main dining room or on the fire-lit courtyard. Paul Douglas, a former band member for both Bruce Hornsby and Kenny Rogers, performs Wednesday through Saturday, strolling through the restaurant among diners to play his acoustic guitar.

La Quinta Resort: Casual Dining Try the best tamale, as awarded at the 2010 Indio Tamale Festival, at Adobe Grill, which serves regional Mexican cuisine. Fresh guacamole is made tableside from all-natural ingredients, and tortillas are handmade thick. Order one of 50 different types of tequilas from the bar while sitting on the patio above the white-light studded La Quinta Resort Plaza. For more casual fare, Twenty6 offers a great sports bar-style option beneath Adobe Grill, serving classic American cuisine like burgers, ribs, salads and a much-discussed reverse soda float for dessert that includes root beer, grape crush and orange crush creamsicles for a touch of nostalgia. The clubhouse for La Quinta's Mountain and Dunes golf courses features a revamped menu that treats visitors to a fun variety of burgers and milkshakes along with fireplace, plasma TVs and golf-course views, while Ernie's Bar and Grill at PGA West satiates the libation taste buds with several premium beers on tap. 18

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www.golfvacationsmag.com


SWEET SPOT FOR GOLF by Robert Mondo

W

ith its idyllic weather and 93 golf courses in every conceivable setting - from mountains to desert to ocean - it's no wonder Golf Digest once named San Diego one of the top 50 golf destinations in the world. With its majestic mountains, rolling foothills, sparkling lakes and expansive desert, it's no surprise that San Diego's East County is a hidden treasure in the region's golf offerings just waiting to be discovered. Following is a sampling of several of East County's worldclass golf courses that duffers can enjoy throughout the year: The Barona Valley Ranch Resort and Casino in Lakeside is home to the Barona Creek Golf Club . Native grasses, oak

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trees, streambeds and colossal rock formations set the tone for this 18-hole, 7,393-yard championship course, designed by internationally acclaimed golf course architect Gary Roger Baird. The course includes over 100 bunkers, strategically placed natural obstacles and five tee choices, making it a rewarding course for players of all skill levels. This year, Barona was ranked "4th Best Course You Can Play in California," "5th Best Casino Course in the Country" and "11th Best Tour Course in the Country" by Golfweek, and was a stop on the PGA's Nationwide Tour in 2007 and 2010. www.barona.com Located in Santee, Carlton Oaks Country Club features a challenging 7,225-yard Pete Dye-designed course with meandering creeks, full-grown trees, strategic undulation and peninsula

www.golfvacationsmag.com


Carlton Oaks Country Club

tie greens. Five sets of tees allow golfers of all skill levels to take advantage of San Diego's only Dye-designed course featuring long fairways and deep pot bunkers. www.carltonoaksgolf.com Golf Digest once named Mt. Woodson Golf Club as one of the "most beautiful and unique courses in California," citing its hilly terrain, superb conditions and panoramic views. The steep changes in elevation throughout the course also help define the special character of Mt. Woodson, where aptly-named holes such as "Drop Off," "The Chute," "Tree Tops" and "The Plunge" capture the challenging nature and fun of this course www.mtwoodson.com Steele Canyon Golf Club in Jamul features three distinct

and exciting 9-hole Gary Player-designed courses for every skill level. Boasting Golf Digest's 4-1/2 Star Award, the courses provide breathtaking views and the most extreme course elevation changes in Southern California. The rugged Canyon Nine features breathtaking elevations; the Ranch Nine winds through fields surrounding a working ranch, and the Meadow Nine stretches along a pastoral valley with beautiful woodlands, streams and native wildlife. www.steelecanyon.com Spread over 435 acres, the golf courses at the Sycuan Resort and Casino in El Cajon provide a challenge for golfers of all skill levels, with a choice of three 18-hole courses: two championship courses and one executive course. The courses' natural terrain includes small ponds, sycamore, oak and cottonwood tree-lined

Sycuan Resort and Casino

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fairways, rock formations, and the Sweetwater River which provide challenging hazards. www.sycuanresort.com

Borrego Springs Resort & CC

RoadRunner Golf Course

Nestled in the desert town of Borrego Springs between the Anza-Borrego Desert and the foothills of the Santa Rosa Mountains, Borrego Springs Resort & Country Club offers an exceptional golfing experience. Three 9-hole courses - The Palms, Desert Willow and Mesquite offer golfers of all levels undulating fairways, vast bunkers and five lakes. The courses' lush landscaping incorporates the vast desert wilderness with several hundred mature date palms, providingbreathtaking views at every turn. www.borregospringsresort.com Situated in the heart of the Anza-Borrego Desert and surrounded by the towering Santa Rosa, San Ysidro and Vallecito Mountains, RoadRunner Golf Course in Borrego Springs is a beautiful and challenging 18-hole, par-3 course offering excellent opportunities for golfers of all skill levels. The fairways are lined with 40 varieties of mature domestic and exotic trees, complementing the panoramic views of thedesert. www.roadrunnerclub.com/golf

Barona Valley Ranch Resort

Steele Canyon Golf Club

Happy happens in San Diego's East County. For more information on East County and the entire San Diego region, visit the San Diego Convention & Visitors Bureau's website, www.sandiego.org or call (619) 236-1212. In San Diego, visit the International Visitor Information Center, located along the Embarcadero at the corner of West Broadway and Harbor Drive in downtown; the La Jolla Visitor Center, located at the corner of Herschel Avenue and Prospect Street in La Jolla, or the California Welcome Center, located at the Viejas Outlet Center in Alpine.

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DESTINATIONS

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WHERE TO STAY WHERE TO PLAY

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CITYDRIVES

Hurray for Hollywood

The Links at Terranea

L

OS ANGELES -- With the iconic "Hollywood" sign looming in the distance and star tour buses beckoning tourists to hop on board after strolling on the Walk of Fame, it's often forgotten that the Los Angeles area offers one of the most diverse selections of golf in California.

Oceanfront links fade into golf courses in the forest, while some utilize natural surroundings for a links-style experience. Parkland layouts aren't far from mountain golf, and views range from Pacific panoramas to the downtown cityscape, or nothing but the great wide open. And just like its varying locale, green fee prices can be all over the map as well -- up to $300 a round at some venues.

As a function of its location and history, it may be perceived that L.A. golf is a sport that can break the bank or requires connections. While in many cases it can, some of the area's greatest public courses can be had for $50 or less. While carts do cost extra at nearly every golf course, with a modest-priced round in the books,

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golfers can walk in the footsteps of some of golf's past champions and present players, while saving money for L.A.'s many off-course activities. Historic municipal golf courses in Los Angeles It's located literally in the middle of a concrete jungle, a little park-like oasis with neighborhoods, restaurants, high-rises and shopping areas surrounding the classic layout. This accessibility could be one reason why Rancho Park Golf Course is one of the busiest and most popular facilities not only in the state, but also in the entire U.S. The other reason? Its green fee caps out at around $48 during peak times, even less for residents. Rancho Park's great value is complemented by its uniqueness, an aspect that is as much to its history as it is to its central location. At 6,600 yards, Rancho Park has hosted some of the golf world's most recognized events, such as the L.A. Open (now Northern Trust Open), the PGA Senior Open, and several LPGA events. It's the same golf course where Arnold Palmer took a 12 on the 18th hole during the 1961 L.A. Open; when asked how he shot 12, he answered, "I missed my putt for an 11."

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By KatieDenbo

LOS ANGELES, CA

Golf in the City of Angels That Won't Break The Bank

Not far from Rancho Park, Griffith Park Golf Club's two regulation golf courses - the Wilson and Harding layouts - have been testing golfers since the mid-1920s. Located within Griffith Park, one of the largest urban parks in the U.S., the golf club hosted the L.A. Open from 1937-39. Noted course architect George C. Thomas, Jr. designed Griffith Park's Wilson course and Harding course, and at $48 for non-residents, it's a great value for a piece of golf history. Oceanfront opportunities in Rancho Palos Verdes One of the few coastal gems of the Los Angeles area is Los Verdes Golf Course in Rancho Palos Verdes, a stone's throw from the sand and with abundant ocean views. At only $33 during peak time, this par-71 William F. Bell design from the mid-1960s stretches to 6,631 yards and offers challenging greens thanks to the nearby Pacific Ocean. It also has a two-tiered driving range and a

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full bar and grill to tantalize golfers after a round. If nine-hole golf is more your speed, the Los Angeles area's newest course presents arguably the most scenic par-3 experience around. The Links at Terranea is also in Rancho Palos Verdes. It's set within Terranea Resort, and each hole offers a view of the ocean from the area's closest point to Catalina Island. Todd Eckenrode of Origins Golf Design drew inspiration from some of his favorite par-3 holes to develop The Links at Terranea, which runs up to $38 at peak times, but it's far from a pitch-andputt course. Take every club in your bag for this test of golf, as ocean breezes can work against players. Afterward, head down to Nelson's at the Resort, located on the cliff above where the television series "Sea Hunt" was filmed. Head Southwest to Long Beach Long Beach has been the stomping ground to a number of

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SPOTLIGHT

(continued)

standout golfers. PGA Tour players John Merrick, John Mallinger and the newest "Mr. 59" himself, Paul Goydos, were all groomed on the area's layouts and still consider the area their home base.

Griffith Park Golf Club

Goydos holds the course record at two of the most popular and wallet friendly layouts in Long Beach: El Dorado Park Golf Course ($49 walking) and Recreation Park Golf Course ($45 walking). El Dorado Park is located in Long Beach's famous regional park of the same name, and at 6,963 yards, is the current home of the Long Beach Open championship. The Links at Terranea

Designed by Ted Robinson, Sr., El Dorado is wide and friendly for the beginner, but from the back tees it brings a challenge with doglegs and water; the green on the first hole is protected by a creek, while 18 finishes up with a lake on the right. Goydos shot a 61 on the par-72 course, and while many big hitters chase that number, none have yet caught it. Not far from El Dorado Park, William F. Bell's Recreation Park Golf Course held Goydos to a record 62 over its 6,280-yard layout. The golf course opened in the early 1940s and is one of the most popular in the area thanks to its mature trees, rolling fairways and playable yardages for all skill levels.

Rancho Park Golf Course

It also runs only $45 at peak time, leaving some money for the golf course's full-service restaurant afterward. Don't forget to practice your short game at "Little Rec," Recreation Park's short course.

El Dorado Park Golf Course

Recreation Park Golf Course

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NEWYEAR I

t appears that 2011 will be a year filled with many new and exciting choices of drivers from a variety of manufacturers as club makers extend the boundaries of technology within the USGA rules to make clubs even more forgiving and easier to hit. The the new Exotics XCG-4 from Tour Edge series offers a livelier club with enough new technology to bring a smile to any player’s face. Available in 276- gram super-ultra-light and 310-gram ultra-light editions, Tour Edge engineers have carried out extensive work to create one of the lightest, most aerodynamic drivers in golf. The XCG- 4’s new sleek design and heavily-radiused sole allow for a more streamlined, fluid head shape that minimizes drag as the driver cuts through the air. Powered by the game’s most advanced lightweight shafts, this is a true distance weapon off the tee.

To maximize spring-like effect, Tour Edge created the Boomerang face. This supercharged design offers multiple levels of variable face thickness that maximize the rebound effect from more points on the face. By thinning and thickening the face, the v-shaped boomerangs allow for the maximum elongation of the titanium for enhanced feel and hotter launch. With Exotics, Tour Edge has spared no expense in building a better golf club. That’s why the tungsten and titanium parts are assembled using a unique vacuum brazing technology. In brazing, the metal parts are joined using a silver filler material that is melted and distributed between the close-fitting parts by capillary action. Extremely expensive and employed extensively in aerospace applications, this technique is utilized when only the highest-quality joints are needed. The parts must be fitted to 1/1000th of an inch and the base metals must be exceptionally clean and free of oxides. The process is expensive because it must be performed inside a vacuum chamber, but the end result is exceptional because it greatly reduces residual part stresses due to slow heating and cooling cycles. This, in turn, significantly improves the thermal and mechanical properties of the material. The super-ultra-light version of the XCG-4 delivers one of the lightest drivers on the market with a total club weight of only 276 grams. It features a 45-gram ultra-light Graphite Design Tour Ad 46” shaft and a 26-gram WinnLite grip. The standard ultra-light version weighs 310 grams and comes standard with a Fujikura Motore 55-gram, 45.5” long shaft and a Golf Pride New Decade grip. For More Information: www.exoticsgolf.com

T

The heart of the XCG-4 is an advanced head design that features a titanium face and sole, an amorphous carbon crown, two amorphous carbon sole inserts, and two tungsten sole weights. The ultra-light weight carbon frees up 27 grams of weight that is strategically positioned in the lower rear of the club head to improve MOI by more than 15% over previous versions. The result is longer tee shots that hold the target line even on off-center contact. 28

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iger Shark Golf will launch its much anticipated PowerPod II Driver at the 2011 PGA Merchandise Show, Jan. 27-29, in Orlando, Fla. The Jim Flood PowerPod II driver is two years in the making and is designed to be the world's first ever slice proof driver. Flood, who has developed over 50 golf-related products in the past 35 years that have revolutionized the game of golf, is credited with inventing the graphite shaft and founded industry giants Aldila Inc. and Odyssey Golf. "We're ready to introduce to the world one of the most unique and high performance driver designs ever produced," said Dean Dingman, President of Tiger Shark Golf. "The PGA Show has always been the best place to launch important innovations to the golf industry and we can't wait to have as many people as possible hit the PowerPod II to see what all the buzz is about." During the Outdoor Demo Day, scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 26, at Orange County National Golf Center & Lodge in Orlando, Tiger Shark Golf will showcase the PowerPod II on the range and their PGA tour popular grips at the short game practice areas.

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SWEETSTUFF From Thursday, Jan. 27 through Saturday, Jan. 29, at the Orange County Convention Center, Tiger Shark Golf will exhibit and provide testing opportunities of the PowerPod II Driver on the Show floor and during Indoor Demo Days. Visit www.tigersharkgolf.com

H

itting the mark once again is adidas Golf with the latest version of one of its premier high-end golf shoes with the introduction of the adiPURE Z, the next-generation in a world-class line of footwear built for the competitive purist. This latest evolution combines clean, sophisticated designs and contemporary styling with an abundance of groundbreaking technologies to produce a shoe that is soft, wearable right out of the box and gives the support expected from a better golf shoe.

Infinitely elegant with classic detailing, traditional look and superior performance, the adiPURE Z follows the bloodline of the original adiPURE footwear, launched last spring. adiPURE Z features a modern approach to a classic footwear design characterized by elegant lines, fine detailing, premium materials and a superior level of craftsmanship. Premium, hand-finished leather incorporated throughout-including the lining-- provides a rich look and feel with lasting quality, while the mono-tongue construction offers a glove-like fit and improved technology. “The adiPURE Z was an exciting challenge for our designers,” said Harry Arnett, Vice President of brand and product marketing, adidas Golf. “We knew there was a subset of golfers who wanted the unparalleled performance delivered by the original adiPURE in a more refined, sophisticated and contemporary package.” adiPURE Z features advanced THiNTech low-profile technology, bringing the golfer closer to the ground for improved stability, better overall footwork and more consistent ball-striking. The shoes include the exclusive THiNTech cleat which delivers exceptional grip in all conditions and 10-Spike configuration, which provides superior grip and perimeter stability even for players with higher swing speeds. The adiPURE Z has a two year waterproof warranty and is available in three colorways: white, black, and redwood. More information is available at www.adidasgolf.com

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he Smart Glove Wrist and Grip Guide is a unique golf training glove that sets a player's wrist in the correct position through the swing for a proper release while practicing. The back of the glove includes a removable rigid wrist guide that keeps a player from casting and helps groove the correct swing mechanics through the entire swing. Endorsed by wellknown teaching pro Rick Smith and marketed by SKLZ, this training glove helps groove the proper wrist action and position enjoyed by the better player. The palm side of the glove includes a specialized fabric to outline proper grip positioning and superior feel. This glove is excellent for use on the practice tee, on the course and putting. The wrist guide can be used during practice and then removed for using the glove for official play. One of the keys to great ball striking is a firm left wrist at swing impact and a proper golf grip. The Smart Glove sets your wrist in the correct position through the swing for a proper wrist release. This highquality Cabretta leather glove comes in five available sizes: S, M, ML, L and XL in left-handed versions only. For more information on the Smart Glove: www.sklz.com. by Terry Ross

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Golf Vacations Magazine January 2011