The phosphorescent indoor landscape at Monster Mini Golf immerses putters in an eerie universe that inverts the sun-soaked cheer of conventional courses. Rimmed in glowing green barriers, 18 holes lure swingers of all sizes to challenge their coordination and resolve in the face of winged monsters, scowling animated trees, a creepy clown, and their opponents' shockingly dazzling smiles. Sheltered from searing rain and howling wind, the indoor course enables play around hazards such as a spell well and luminous, ghostly windmill at any time of the year. An in-house radio station and DJ mask the sound of pounding hearts with lively beats and course commentary, and golfers looking for additional glory can win prizes by participating in regular contests or at the on-site arcade.
An electrifying array of games, golf, and high-speed competition cater to adrenaline aficionados of all ages at Malibu Grand Prix’s bustling amusement center. Lead-footed motorists can experience unlimited access to Malibu's high-performance go-karts, zipping around hairpin turns, picking up speed on straightaways, and flying over banked curves with a passenger in tow aboard Malibu's safe and speedy four-wheeled chariots. Like the violent water warfare portrayed in Monet's Water Lilies, aqueous enthusiasts can hop aboard bumper boats to execute broadside collisions or blasts from the onboard water cannon to drench dry loved ones. A variety of electronic entertainment populates the game room, while the thoughtful, zen-like meditation that is miniature golf makes for a relaxing way to cap off an afternoon of speed.
Three-time Masters Champion Jimmy Demaret states, “I simply followed the natural features of the land” to explain the genesis of his brainchild, the Onion Creek Club. Here 18 holes of championship golf—designed by course architects Ben Crenshaw and Bill Coore—sprawl alongside tennis courts and a clubhouse with a fitness center and junior-Olympic-size swimming pool. The par-70 course’s claim to fame is having hosted the inaugural Senior PGA event in 1978, four years after the greens’ bermuda grass first whimpered under cleated feet. Its signature third hole invites golfers to play aggressively with their drivers in order to vault orbs onto a landing strip guarded by trees and a creek, or to grip their irons and aim for a narrow green that has notoriously uncommunicative air-traffic controllers.
In addition to the course and its accompanying driving range with 30 hitting stations, Onion Creek Club invites racket-wielders to take advantage of lighted hard and clay tennis courts. The clubhouse’s fitness center challenges muscles with Cybex strength machines, and its junior-Olympic-size pool allows 9 irons to slip into their bikinis and go for a splash.
At River Place Country Club, a championship golf course designed by Jay Morrish and Tom Kite, winner of the 1992 U.S. Open, invites golfers to launch balls over sand bunkers and twisting creeks that wend their way through the landscape’s hilly contours. The course’s superintendent draws on experience at Baton Rouge Country Club and Colonial Country Club, as well as a degree in Plant and Soil Systems, as he ensures that the greens and rolling Bermuda grass fairways are more carefully manicured than a prize-winning pet wooly mammoth. The course’s PGA professional instructors are on hand to improve individual games, and a driving range lets players practice at 15 hitting stations.
Adjacent to the course, eight lighted tennis courts abut a 40,000-square-foot clubhouse with an outdoor pool, fully equipped fitness center, and locker rooms whose dry saunas and whirlpools melt tension quicker than butter melts on the calves of a sprinter. The Grille invites clubgoers to sup on steak or seafood, and a pair of outdoor decks let guests drink in scenic views.
Course at a Glance:
Owner and golf guru Matt Christian brings countless golf, fitness, and club-fitting certifications to Elite Golf Performance, where private lessons pair with video analysis to shave strokes from scorecards. Elite’s expert instructors help students develop simple, routine-based exercises focusing on coordination and consistency, following an Elite Golf Performance mode of instruction espoused by PGA Tour winners and US Open champions. The center also boasts a repertoire of technological teaching aids, allowing players to dissect their technique with video swing analysis.
Although weather control is still the stuff of comic book legend, that hasn’t stopped the golfers behind The Range from seeking their own path to 365 days of rain-free playtime. Instead of bending the forces of Mother Nature to their own wills, they subvert the clouds’ best efforts by bringing golfers indoors for rounds in their HD simulators. The photo-realistic system captures the feel of 20 renowned courses, such as Angus Glen, Kiawah Island, and Spyglass Hill. Each course is rendered from data collected through GIS-based 3D modeling technology, which recreates every bunker, sand pit, and gazelle crossing found in the real life courses. Beyond their simulated golf bays, The Range also houses a full sports bar, where cooks prepare sizzling American favorites, including spicy Buffalo wings and juicy hamburgers, feeding both golfers in between swings and guests simply in the market for a hot meal and cold drink.