Nestled in the scenic shadows of the Smoky Mountains, Bent Creek Golf Course's 18-hole layout stretches across 6,182 yards of fairways that rise and fall among rolling foothills and pristine valleys. Golf legend and course designer Gary Player made deft use of a babbling mountain stream by running it through the course and seamlessly uniting two distinct nines: a front nine that sprawls across the valley floor and a back nine that roams the hilly mountainside like a forlorn sasquatch. The overall effect is a course that does justice to both the sheer scope of the rising peaks with bottom-up views and the panoramic splendor of Great Smoky Mountains National Park when seen from the cresting hilltops of the back-nine. The inventive layout is perhaps best characterized by the 11th hole, a 362-yard par 4 where a 90-degree dogleg-left plays into a green completely surrounded by the creek's rippling waters. A blend of bent and bermuda grasses grows resiliently for golfers striving to play all year-round, and fragrant wildflowers blossom at every tee to warm the hearts of world-weary nine-irons.
Bent Creek bolsters the pin-hunting prowess of its golfers with a staff of PGA-certified instructors that conducts lessons and presides over the domain of their full-service pro shop. A practice putting green helps players trim their score by reading dicey slopes, and the Creek Side Grill hosts postround revelry and community gatherings to decry the historical hardships of the mashie niblick.
Fairways and Greens Golf Center's 25-acre practice and instructional facilities help Titanium Membership holders to hone their skills with unlimited practice balls and year-round amenities available only to members. The outdoor grounds boast a bevy of arenas to work on your swing, putt, or ceremonious hole-in-one dance routine, including a practice range with three spacious bermuda-grass tees, two crenshaw bentgrass putting greens, and a covered tee area that banishes weather-spawned interferences with a shade-blocking canopy and gas heaters at each of its 18 hitting stations. The Loop course encircles a pond with three greens, each of which sports three separate tees, creating a nine-hole layout that ranges from 80 to 60 yards per hole. Meanwhile, the 10,000-square-foot indoor space provides sphere-slingers with a 1,400-square-foot True Tour putting green and individual video-swing analyses to refine your technique when chopping golf balls or betamax videocassettes. Fairways and Greens is also home to a 2,500-square-foot indoor fitness center that brims with the cardiovascular and muscle-toning equipment necessary to keep pars attainable.
Located just outside of downtown Knoxville, Williams Creek Golf Course is a par 3 championship course that sprawls across 98 acres of rippling terrain accented by creeks and ponds, challenging short game skills with holes that range from 85-245 yards. At the elevated tee box on the first hole, players have the chance to peer out at what lies ahead, from the fast-playing bent-grass greens to any wildlife wildly waving foam fingers along the edges of maincured fairways. Each hole presents a different challenge: number six, for instance, forces shots to soar over water, and number 14 boasts the longest distance at 245 yards. Players can prepare for such hurdles by taking advantage of the other on-site facilities, which include a fully stocked pro shop, a driving range, and lessons from PGA and LPGA professionals.
Staffed by experienced coaches and computers who’ve sworn allegiance to the three laws of golfing robotics, GolfTEC’s motion sensors and high-speed cameras monitor swings and break down each individual’s form on a high-definition video display to get results. Sensors chirp with approval whenever they detect the perfect stroke or an especially witty golfing joke. GolfTEC’s certified personal coaches will point out flaws and strengths while providing golfers with tips on how to permanently improve their game from tee to green.
Inside Nevada Bob's, everything is dedicated to golf. For instance, one wall is lined with golf bags and another showcases rows of shimmering golf clubs from top industry brands such as Mizuno, Nike, and Callaway. Customers can roam in between this corridor of quality golf equipment to browse golf shoes, inspect the latest golf ball technology, and find the right pair of golf gloves capable of bench-pressing a golf cart. The store also features a repair facility, an indoor golf simulator, and private lessons with an accredited golf pro.
The Cork & Cleaver, the most popular restaurant in Waynesville according to TripAdvisor, serves luscious food with exceptional service. Starters on the menu include upscale favorites such as oysters rockefeller, baked with spinach and mornay asiago sauce ($8). Skim over soups and salads to land on the meaty terrain of the 20-ounce Braveheart black Angus porterhouse steak, including the tender filet and the hearty loin ($26). The Cork & Cleaver also offers natural meats, ranched sustainably and without a trace of hormones or antibiotics. All steaks are served with pillowy mounds of roasted-garlic mashed potatoes, a loaded baked potato, or the vegetable of the day.