When golfing legend Gary Player designed Steele Canyon Golf Club, he did so in a manner that both respected and showcased the region's natural beauty and terrain. Gary divvied the 27-hole championship course into a trio of nine-hole courses, each presenting golfers with different challenges and vistas.
Located on the Ranch Course, the signature hole, "Parachute," has players tee off from more than 175 feet above the fairway. Not to be outdone, the Canyon Course features some lofty shots of its own. Hole four, for instance, challenges players with a sloping two-tiered green, but earned the nickname "Goosebumps" for its panoramic view of the canyons.
The family-owned Sun Valley Golf Course cultivates a welcoming atmosphere that sets nerves at ease so that youngsters and beginners can make a stress-free foray into the lifelong game. The par 27 excursion politely omits any tee shot longer than 145 yards, eliminating the trepidation felt on long tee shots over water or asteroid craters at larger venues. Nevertheless, small greens and quick changes in elevation keep even more experienced players on their toes and help them to hone short-game technique. The course's short layout ensures that players average less than 90 minutes for a nine-hole round, leaving plenty of time in the day to polish lucky golf balls.
Its simple course layout makes Sun Valley Golf Course a natural place for young club cadets to take up the game. Junior golf programs led by instructor Mike Cortes help kids to develop proper form at an early age through camps, clinics, and classes.
Course at a Glance: * 9-hole, par 27 course * Total length of 1,057 yards from the back tees * Two sets of tees per hole
Ed Harris's knowledge of golf could fill a book?and it has, three times over. The PGA pro and author of instructional books that teach golfers about swing dynamics, short-game mastery, and course strategy also shares his expertise in lessons at his eponymous school, which has welcomed high-profile alumni including Clint Eastwood, Alice Cooper, and Samuel L. Jackson.
Private lessons provide personalized programs to improve skills, often using video evaluation to further pinpoint the exact moment the student lost their form and spun into a pirouette. Nine-hole [playing lessons present on-course challenges, and classes designed for juniors teach young players the fundamentals of the game, including how to react when golf carts start bucking.
Few par 3 golf courses boast an 18-hole layout. Even fewer can claim landscape features that include two ponds, a scenic waterfall, and rows of palm trees. Golfers encounter all of the above at Colina Park Golf Course, where 18 holes ranging from 67 to 125 yards require players to demonstrate short-game skills. Colina Park also encompasses a practice facility with a 3,000-square-foot practice putting green and a chipping and bunker area. After a long day of studying the course’s contoured greens, clubbers can head to the full-service pro shop and upgrade their golf gear, grab food and drinks in the clubhouse, or attempt to stealthily immortalize their scorecard on the wall. In addition to the on-course fun, Colina Park Golf Course also houses Pro Kids Golf Academy, which uses the game of golf to foster character development, life skills, and educational opportunities for underserved youth.
Originally built in the 1920s by A.G. Spalding of Spalding Sports and having hosted professional golfers such as Phil Mickleson, Sam Snead, and Craig Stadler, Sail Ho Golf Club’s charming and historic 9-hole course endows orb-smackers with an expansive view of the San Diego skyline. Seasoned swingers and golf greenhorns alike can send their balls sailing across the 8th hole’s flourishing fairway, or practice ESP-communication with aberrant balls in flight to steer shots away from the 9th hole’s five sand bunkers. Players can sharpen shots even more with the expert instruction of golf lessons ($25 each, not included), taught by an on-staff PGA Professional. A bounty of breakfast items, burgers, and sandwiches await hole-in-one hunger pangs at the Sail Ho’s bar and grill, which also features an array of wine, beer, and specialty cocktails for post-round libations.