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10 Top Underrated Golf Courses
Just in time for Father's Day, consider one of these off-the-grid courses as the perfect gift for dad.
Treat dad to an unforgettable trip at one of these 10 under-the-radar courses.
The St. Regis Punta Mita Resort
The St. Regis Punta Mita Resort is located about 45 minutes from Puerto Vallarta and offers guests three infinity pools, a Remede Spa, top-notch international cuisine and two Jack Nicklaus signature golf courses: the renowned Jack Nicklaus Signature Pacifico Course and the Jack Nicklaus Signature Bahia Course. The Jack Nicklaus Signature Pacifico Course provides an interesting challenge for golfers with its famous par-3 "Tail of the Whale," the only natural island green.
The Raven Golf Club at Three Peaks
The Raven Golf Club at Three Peaks is considered the best mountain course in Colorado. Located in Silverthorne, Colorado, just an hour from Denver, the Raven's spectacular setting is only surpassed by its challenging yet thrilling Tom Lehman and Hurdzan/Fry-designed golf course. An online tour walks golfers through this straightforward course filled with par-3, par-4 and par-5 holes. But perhaps the best reason to journey to this course is the backdrop of towering stands of pine and aspen, snowcapped 13,000-foot-tall peaks, crystal clear creeks and trout-filled lakes.
LaPlaya Beach & Golf Resort
LaPlaya Golf Club is centrally located in Naples, about 3 miles from the LaPlaya Beach Club. As the second-oldest golf course in Naples, The LaPlaya Golf Club was established in 1958, and it was originally coined as the Palm River Golf Club. Upon becoming the LaPlaya Golf Club in 2001, the property underwent a major refreshment. Today, the 18-hole, par-72 Robert Cupp-designed course features challenging holes. Fourteen holes feature picturesque water hazards, and more than 3,000 stately palm trees grace the course. What's more, the clubhouse features an old-world Florida charm, with an elegant wraparound veranda, a grill room, a golf shop and state-of-the-art facilities.
Hotel Royal Evian
In 1904, the Evian Mineral Water Company built a nine-hole golf course overlooking Lake Geneva across 148 acres of wooded parkland – one of the first golf courses in France. Today, the 6,595 yard, 18-hole course hosts the Evian Championship, a women's golf tournament that serves as one of the five official major tournaments of the Ladies Professional Golf Association (Kraft Nabisco, the LPGA Championship, the U.S. Women's Open and the Women's British Open serve as the remaining four). The greens also boast six pin positions with ambitious obstacles, such as water hazards and deep bunkers, catering to expert golfers.
Four Seasons Resort Mauritius at Anahita
Set on the ruins of a former sugar plantation in Mauritus, this Four Seasons outpost partnered with golf pro Ernie Els to design a 7,400 yard, par-72 course. Buttressed by fabulous mountain views, the five-tee system accommodates golfers of all skill levels, while the on-site golf academy provides extensive instruction and hosts corporate events. Best of all, all guests of the resort are offered complimentary GPS-fitted golf carts, 55 Callaway balls and a course-side Le Club restaurant meal delivery.
Redlands Mesa Golf Club
Located in Grand Junction, on Colorado's Western Slope, you'll find Redlands Mesa Golf Club, which features a spectacular course with unique holes and natural grandeur. In fact, over one-third of Redlands Mesa's 500 acres have been designed to include 11 elevated tees and 41 bunkers. And with its unrivaled location, perched below the rugged buttes south of Grand Junction, Colorado, the club puts golfers beneath the dramatic rock formations of Colorado National Monument, making for especially arresting views.
Furnace Creek Resort
Located inside the Furnace Creek Resort, Furnace Creek Golf Course is at the lowest altitude of any golf course in the world – 214 feet below sea level – in the middle of California's Death Valley. Starting at $130 per night, per person, you and dad can enjoy unlimited golf on this 18-hole, par-70 golf course designed by legendary golf architect Pete Dye. Filled with challenging holes and a low altitude that requires top-notch clubs to achieve the perfect swings, the course caters to experiences golfers, and offers a dramatic setting with the majestic mountain ranges in the backdrop.
Old Works Golf Club
This former Anaconda copper mine was converted into a brilliant, Jack Nicklaus signature golf course. Nicklaus incorporated many elements of mining – smelter oven remains, and even black slag (the byproduct of copper smelting) was used to frame the bunkers – on this affordable course. You and dad can take your pick from five different sets of tees, based on your skill levels and preferred fairway.
Park Hyatt St Kitts
Slated to open in fall 2016, the Park Hyatt St. Kitts will sit on a secluded area overlooking The Narrows, a strait separating St. Kitts and Nevis. In addition to opportunities for diving, snorkeling, fishing and yachting, dads can perfect their swings on an 18-hole designed course by legendary golf architect Tom Fazio. For golf enthusiasts who have been itching to play other Tom Fazio courses, including Jupiter Hills, Butler National, Inverness and Oak Hill with nearby azure waters, this St. Kitts course will be their chance of a lifetime.
Shangri-La's Hambantota Resort and Spa
In early June, Shangri-La opened the Hambantota Resort and Spa. The brand new resort includes a par-70 course designed by Rodney Wright. To create the course a former sapphire mine was revitalized into three zones, giving way to unobstructed ocean views, wide fairways and unique water and bunker features. Lush vegetation is also prevalent along the 6,106-yard-long course of salt-tolerant grass. Eco-friendly attributes also include the use of degradable organic balls (filled with fish feed) at the driving rage and an irrigation system that harvests and recycles rainwater for the course.
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