Beneath Mount Baldy, which cuts a snowy wedge from the horizon, Claremont Golf Course's nine holes form a grassy emerald pool. Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden lies adjacent to the golf course, filling the air with the scents of native Californian flora and punishing players with penalty strokes for always using roses in their poetic metaphors. Totaling 1,915 yards from the back tees, with just one hole longer than 300 yards, the nine-hole executive course does not present a lengthy undertaking. Taken along with the lighted driving range and practice area, the comparatively short course is a great place for beginners to start out and for more experienced golfers to practice the short game or use their golf balls that bruise easily.
Course at a Glance:
Nestled just south of Mount Baldy and national forests sits the 18-hole championship course at Upland Hills Country Club, designed by David A. Rainville. Players putt and drive around water hazards and palm trees that have been providing coconut golf balls at the course for nearly 30 years. The course’s 6th and 13th holes sprawl over 539 and 475 yards, respectively, earning them each a par 5. After swinging through the course, golfers can drop in at the restaurant and bar for refreshments, schedule a lesson, or visit the pro shop to replace the golf glove they ruined by bedazzling it for a Michael Jackson impersonation. Course at a Glance:
GolfTEC's thirteen locations in the Los Angeles area, all staffed by experienced golfing professionals and computers who’ve sworn allegiance to the Three Laws of golfing robotics. Motion sensors and high-speed cameras monitor your swing and break down your form on a high-definition video display. GolfTEC’s certified teaching professionals point out your flaws, strengths, and coach you on how to permanently improve your game, from tee to green. Sensors chirp with approval when you’ve executed a perfect stroke or cracked an especially witty golfing joke.
Fountains whisper to themselves amid low emerald hillocks. Groups of golfers confer over tees at the ninth hole, where the fairway drops off to the left, into the cool mirror of a small lake. Architect Ted Robinson, who has designed more than 170 courses, draws heavily on the many uses of water in his creations. With mountains spearing the horizon in the distance, golfers cut beneath swaying palm trees. The scents of grilling burgers drift down from the clubhouse, and during Sunday-morning brunches, champagne glasses clink occasionally like a shy xylophonist.
Sand traps, attractive scenery, and a clever layout with no parallel fairways create the par-70 championship course at Indian Hills Golf Club. Grab a friend or borrow a golf-loving enemy, mount a rental golf cart, and cruise your way through 18 levels of ball-and-club fun. A sleeve of three Wilson Ultra balls will be provided to both you and your golfmate; these can be used for your choice of juggling or golfing as you take in the delicious views of Jurupa Valley. After the game, replenish energy lost while escaping from the 18th hole's water hazard by visiting the club's on-site restaurant, 19th Hole Pub & Grille, where both players enjoy a traditional Scottish postgame recovery kit—a hot dog, chips, and a small drink.
The beautifully manicured golf course at Hidden Valley carefully incorporates the existing flora, streambeds, and outcropped rocks into its 6,860 yards of dimpled ball habitat, making players of every skill level feel as if they're teeing off in an unspoiled national park. A GPS-enabled cart will keep you from accidentally driving onto the Autobahn as you journey through a pleasantly challenging round of recreational golf (up to a $67 value, cart included). To warm up wrists before the game, guests can flick through a large bucket of balls on the practice green ($10), and once the 18th green has been conquered and purged of its mini-dragon guardians, it's off to the Villa Amalfi Ristorante to refuel. Sip on coffee, tea, or soda, and choose one food item from the breakfast or lunch menu, which includes tasty breakfast burritos ($6.95), mushroom-swiss burgers ($7.95), fried-chicken salad ($10.95), and more (up to $17.95 value). Customers also get their choice of either a hat ($20) or a golf shirt ($65), giving them a change of clothes when their astronaut suit is being dry-cleaned.