Short-game specialist and PGA Class-A pro Bruce Vieira improves swings with his time-tested accelerated training program with 20 years of college and professional golf to his name. Conducting lessons at DeLaveaga Golf and Lodge, he starts new students off with an introductory evaluation. From the onset of their training, students learn why certain outcomes happen after a swing, and what needs to change in order for scores to improve. That familiarity comes in handy when students begin building new swings based on their individual traits, such as their body type, range of motion, and whether or not they can get their hands on a corked putter.
Pristine fairways gently rise and fall across 6,664 yards of undulating terrain at Pajaro Valley Golf Club's 18-hole course. Located a mere Goliath's drive from the Pacific Ocean, golfers can smell the crisp sea air and hear the hushed whispers of heist-planning pelicans throughout the picturesque par 72, once the verdant kingdom of 1930s golf legend Olin Dutra. The club’s E-Z-Go golf carts ferry about the arsenal of woods and irons needed to triumph over the transition from shorter par 3s and 4s to the lengthy fairways at the 1st, 4th, 15th, and 17th holes, all par 5.
After looping the horticultural haven, golfers can retreat to the club's full-service restaurant, where frothy beers and hamburgers refuel weary bodies and famished 9-irons. Spiky-shoed journeymen can place their order ahead of time at the 9th or 18th tees, ensuring their meal will be ready for them at the turn or shortly after the round.
In 1959, Bob and Jean Sanford and their four children could be found tending to livestock and avocado trees on the site that Casserly Golf Course now rests. But six years later, the family took the ranch into a different direction, and Bob and his three sons laid an irrigation system and began to sculpt the earth into a 9-hole, par-three golf course, which they opened in 1966. Today, Bob and Jean's son Rod runs the course, which offers two distinct sets of tees so golfers can play an 18-hole round without having to erase their memory in-between nines. The original barn still stands as a relic of the course's half-century history.
Designed by Clark Glasson and built in 1961, Deep Cliff's 18 hole, par 60, executive course is nestled in the Cupertino foothills. A short course of 3,358 yards, Deep Cliff is recommended by many course reviewers as a good starting point for beginners.
Veteran golfers may look at Blackberry Farm Golf Course's seven par 3s and two par 4s and immediately think "piece of cake," but they may soon regret it. It's true that the overall length is very short at 1,544 yards, but if they're not dialed in with their short irons and putter, the round will still be a long one regardless of yardage. The fairways are narrow and the greens small, so accuracy is paramount. This makes the course a prime spot for polishing short game skills and building a smooth, reliable swing—something made much easier without the added pressure of extreme length.
Cinnabar Hills Golf Club is named after the rich, red ore mined from its hills in the 19th century. Its three 9-hole layouts—The Canyon, The Lake, and The Mountain—foreshadow the property's topographical variety. Elevation changes and scenic overlooks are a constant across this 27-hole complex sculpted into San Jose's southern foothills. The 9-hole layouts can be combined into six different 18-hole playing experiences, keeping the adventure fresh as players select from multiple tee boxes, putt on exceptional Northern California greens, and relish scenic views throughout the course. Oak trees fill the landscape and attract a diverse population of wildlife, including red-tail hawks known for preying on unsuspecting bunker rakes. The enchanting layout and location have helped the course garner numerous awards, including the title of Best Public Golf Course from the San Jose Mercury News, San Jose Magazine, Metro, and the Silicon Valley Concierge Association for many years in a row.
After rounds, golfers can refuel at the full-service restaurant and bar, or bask in the game's rich history at the Brandenburg Historical Golf Museum. Full-size replicas of the four major championship trophies glisten in the display cases, along with a host of other golf artifacts.