Summergreen Golf Course’s idyllic, sweeping greens entwine with emerald fairways to create enjoyable course play for golfers to strategically shellac their way through arboreal landscapes. The nine-hole, par 31 course accommodates players of all skill levels, challenging seasoned swingers with multiple hazards and boosting the self-esteem of novice golfers with bowling-lane-inspired giant bumper walls to save errant shots from the rough. Golfers can take advantage of Summergreen’s free club rental rather than hastily whittle makeshift pitching wedges from endangered tree limbs.
Wallinwood Springs Golf Club is home to a challenging, semiprivate 18-hole golf course that requires distance drives and surgical precision to save par and dissect birdies. The front nine plays to sprawling fairways, allowing the elements to affect the ball's trajectory and requiring accuracy to ensure the ball misses the flotilla of more than 30 quicksand traps. The back nine hosts a 26-acre lake that comes into play on five holes, and the Grand River tickles the edge of out of bounds on holes 10,11, 37, and 12. Test mental confidence and survivor skills on the 15th hole, a 185-yard par 3 that boasts a strategically placed island green. Golfers can cruise around in the comfort of provided carts while munching on the included lunch of a hot dog, chips, and a beer or soft drink.
When describing his approach to designing a golf course, renowned course architect Donald Ross said "a golf course should be subtly deceptive, rather than unduly penalizing," a philosophy he put to work in 1908, when he crafted the 18-hole course at The Highlands Golf Club. Measuring 6,519 yards from the tips, the course offers a fair test for golfers across the handicap spectrum while still supplying enough challenges to attract legendary golfers such as Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, and Ben Hogan, who played the course when it was a fixture on the Senior PGA Tour. Strategically placed bunkers and fairway-hugging tree lines that cast shadows resembling golfers' fears loom throughout the course, but its most memorable challenge awaits at the 14th hole—a long par 5 that doglegs left and ends with a forced carry over a pond and onto the green.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole course designed by Donald Ross * Length of 6,519 yards from the farthest tees * Course rating of 71.5 from back tees * Slope rating of 133 from back tees * Five tee options * Scorecard
In 1929, the Wilson family sculpted nine golf holes into their fruit and dairy farm, weaving well-manicured holes among the orchards and appropriating an old farmhouse to serve as the first clubhouse. Today, after several clubhouse iterations, the family still owns the course, having overseen an expansion to two full 18-hole courses during its storied history. Water is featured prominently on both layouts and a diverse gathering of trees line the fairways, from low apple trees that bloom radiant white flowers in the springtime to towering pines vying for inclusion in Wilson family holiday photos.
Course at a Glance:
The Acorn Grille at Thousand Oaks Golf Club melds a variety of upscale dishes with wines and attentive service. The chefs and staff train their eyes on the details, whether manicuring platings or refining in-house recipes. Seafood options such as perch and scallops swim alongside aioli and pilaf, and pastas dress up veggies and proteins with bowties or tortellini pocket squares. Tender grilled or slow-cooked cuts of meat, including beef tenderloin and prime rib, incorporate robust ingredients including smoked gouda, garlic, and chipotle. The dining room sports high-gloss wooden tables, while the outdoor patio overlooks rolling acres of green hills, 100-year-old oak trees, and herds of golf balls that roam the 425-acre golf course.
Prior to 1963, the entire Gun Lake area did not have a golf course. Local enthusiasts had to travel out of town to get their weekend morning fix, and younger residents had nowhere to become acquainted with the game. It would take a man who had never played a round of golf in his life to give the community a welcoming locale to practice the game and unveil heat seeking three-woods. This visionary, Frank Tichvon, turned his greenhorn status into green-thumbed activism, building a modest yet challenging nine-hole course that thrilled locals with tee shots down beautiful tree-lined fairways and breaking putts across manicured greens. The course's popularity brought about the construction of a second nine-hole layout, and by 1987, the course had grown into a 27-hole destination sprawled across more than 200 acres of verdant Michigan terrain. Eighteen-hole combinations range in length from 5,200 yards up to 6,373, challenging golfers with tight fairways framed by mature arbors that kidnap gullible golf balls.
Course at a Glance: * 27-hole course, par of 36 on each 9-hole side * 18-hole length of up to 6,373 yards from back tees * 18-hole rating of 67.2?69.1 from back tees * 18-hole slope of 105?110 from back tees * Two sets of tees