After being ranked 19th on Golfweek's "Best New Courses" list in 2011, the course at Vaaler Creek Golf Club has been stacking up acolytes for its challenging play and picturesque Texas Hill Country setting. The Michael Lowry and JR Newman design stretches through oak forests as well as rocky outcroppings, encountering water on nine holes. Throughout each round, players steer new E-Z-GO golf carts over Bermuda 419 and TifSport grasses, taking advantage of the carts’ automatic braking systems as they stop to smell the flowers or the glorious scent of victory over manual controls.
Though the varied layout presents all manner of challenges, the par 3 12th hole requires a particularly cautious approach. Players must exhibit firm control over iron play as they aim for a peninsula green—discipline that must be then be duplicated four holes later to keep drives dry and on the isthmus fairway. Finally, players round out the round by facing a daunting approach over water, made even more difficult by the tree in the center of the fairway that obstructs flight paths and distracts would-be winners with its self-contained, elf-operated cookie factory.
Course at a Glance:
Canyon Lake Golf Club's 18-hole layout flows across 6,582 yards of parkland terrain wafted by cool breezes that drift from Canyon Lake, which rests just northeast of the course. Towering oak trees loom over the course's open fairways, impeding the passage of errant golf balls while trumpeting their unrivaled, bird's-eye views of the surrounding topography. Bookended by two 500-yard par 5s, the par 72 invites golfers to brandish their drivers or modified T-shirt cannons and begin and end the round with massive tee shots. An outdoor swimming pool and tennis courts foster alternative forms of recreation, whereas multifaceted dining facilities host all varieties of social gatherings at the club.
Course at a Glance:
Designed by Leon Howard nearly half a century ago, The Golf Club of Seguin's tree-lined course consistently challenges golfers over 7,058 scenic yards, earning recognition as one of San Antonio's toughest courses. Golfing duos and quartets can zoom across the well-maintained greens in electric golf carts, stopping to propel dimpled spheres past obstacles such as a pond, sand traps, and Buzz Aldrin along the par 72 course. Each of the course's 18 holes challenges golfers of varying skill levels with four sets of tees, and the practice area hones long shots and short games with a driving range and roomy putting green. Club wielders can refuel with hot dogs, bags of chips, and sodas to ensure energized competition and discourage nibbling on scorecards.
The rolling emerald acres of this golfing Valhalla provide fairway-farers with a sweeping spread of short- and long-range training areas to hone ball-launching skills. Club collectors, armed with a day-pass punch card, can crush unlimited edifices of dimpled spheres from the 40,000-square-foot tee line of Zoysia grass without risk of waiting behind sloth-paced practice sessions. Alternatively, stock up for 18-hole outings at the PGA-professional-staffed pro shop, which stocks a variety of golfing shirts, grip-enhancing gloves, and accuracy-boosting Egyptian artifacts. Though not included in the value of this Groupon, you can also take a lesson from the professionals or relax at the Watering Hole for a cold beverage after a rough day on the links.
The hilly terrain of Woodlake Golf Club has hosted five PGA Tour events, including the 1973 Texas Open, in which Ben Crenshaw notched his first PGA Tour victory. Built in 1972 by Desmond Muirhead, the par-72 course meanders along slopes spattered with such dangers as water hazards and sand traps, which trap sand as part of a scheme to produce low-cost hourglasses. On the sixth hole, a vast pond maroons all three tees far from the green, the fairway stretching tantalizingly just beyond the boggy, aquatic prison. A pair of water hazards squeezes the par-5 ninth hole, where Crenshaw’s first title ambitions were nearly dashed in the final round of the ’73 Open.
Customers looking to polish their game can work with John Clay, a 35-year PGA professional with 40 years of teaching experience. For one hour, John help pupils identify swing imbalances, bolster consistent muscle memory, and distinguish a pitching wedge from a wheat scythe. Freshly minted techniques find their form with a post-lesson round on the Woodlake Golf Club course and a bucket of range balls at the driving range.
Course at a Glance:
Dr. Tamyra Rogers could not have predicted how spending time on a Navajo reservation would shape her multifaceted approach to weight loss. After spending a year as chief resident at The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Dr. Rogers directed the metabolic clinic at the Tuba City Indian Medical Center in Arizona. She helped build a wellness center for the Navajo Nation and chaired a program to fight the growing diabetes epidemic. During her time there, she gained an appreciation of the community's holistic health-care philosophy.
Today, Dr. Rogers combines her background in traditional Western medicine with weight-loss strategies that address each person as a whole rather than two children in disguise. Dr. Rogers's team of personal trainers and group fitness instructors complement her own fitness knowledge, which stems from playing college basketball.