Golf Travel News: March 7, 2024

Golf Travel News: March 7, 2024

In Golf Travel News this week are items from Grand Traverse Resort, Shangri-La, Eagle Ridge, Westin Maui and The Broadmoor.

Grand Traverse Resort and Spa Announces 2024 Golf Events, Packages, and Specials

ACME, Mich., March 5, 2024 – We are counting down the days until the golf season begins at Grand Traverse Resort and Spa! The Bear, The Wolverine, and Spruce Run will be opening soon and if you are looking to get in on the action, we have you covered with golf events, packages, and more.

Late June to mid-September: Dave Pelz Scoring Game School Returns

The internationally renowned Dave Pelz Scoring Game School applies a practical, scientific approach to golf instruction, honed through years of research and providing golf lessons to many of the game’s top professionals. To enroll, visit

April 27, 2024: Spring Par 3 Shootout

$130 per team, includes golf, cart, and prizes

Think you have what it takes to conquer The Bear? We turn every hole into a Par 3 in this two-person scramble.

May 12, 2024: Mother’s Day Golf Special

Celebrate Mother’s Day with complimentary golf for women on all three courses! Book your tee times early for this popular day.

May 24-27, 2024: Memorial Day Weekend Golf Special

$89 The Bear & The Wolverine; $59 Spruce Run

Kick off the summer season with Memorial Day weekend golf specials.

June 15-21, 2024: Golf Your Daylights Out

$139 for Resort guests, $169 for non-Resort guests

This special is perfect for golfers who can never get enough time on the links! Play as many holes as you can squeeze into a day as we celebrate the summer solstice and extended daylight in northern Michigan. Try to conquer each of our three courses or hone your craft on one.

June 29-July 7, 2024: National Cherry Festival Golf Special

$119 The Bear & The Wolverine, $79 Spruce Run

National Cherry Festival week is the time to come play at Grand Traverse Resort and Spa. With events happening on property and in town, you will get the full Traverse City experience on and off the course.

July 5, 2024: Cherry Golf Scramble

$130 per team, includes golf, cart, and prizes

Join us for a “cherry” good time at our National Cherry Festival Golf Scramble on Spruce Run.

August 30-September 2, 2024: Labor Day Weekend Golf Special

$89 The Bear & The Wolverine, $59 Spruce Run

Say goodbye to the summer season with special pricing all Labor Day weekend. Exceptional course conditions make for a day of golf you will never forget, and our special pricing makes it easy to try out each of our three highly acclaimed courses.

October 5, 2024: 13th Annual Big Hole Golf Tournament

$260 per team, includes golf, cart, and prizes

This four-person scramble on Spruce Run features gigantic, impossible-to-miss 10’ cups!

October 20, 2024: 15th Annual Tuff Enuff Golf Tournament

$130 per team, includes golf, cart, and prizes

Play one of Michigan’s toughest courses, The Bear, at its absolute hardest. We turn The Bear into 7,000+ yards of long-range tee boxes, aggressive greens, and challenging hole locations.

Golf Package

One-night Golf Package (midweek and weekend options available – can be booked more than one night)

· One night of accommodations

· One day of unlimited golf per person (midweek), one round of golf on any course per person (weekend)

· One medium bucket of range balls per person

For current golf rates or to reserve a tee time, call 231-534-6000, visit our Pro Shop, or book online.

A Conversation with the Man Behind One of the Country’s Most Fascinating New Par-Three Golf Courses

Tom Clark goes behind the scenes of The Battlefield at Oklahoma’s Shangri-La Resort

The Battlefield Par-3 Course at Shangri-La Resort (Monkey Island, Oklahoma) is an extraordinary golfing experience on an unforgettable piece of land. The picturesque short course has received rave reviews in its first several months of operation and has transformed the vibrant lakefront destination into a 45-hole golfers paradise.

The visionary who brought The Battlefield’s design to life in such picturesque and dramatic fashion is Tom Clark, the same golf course architect who has brought polish and intrigue to the 27 championship holes at Shangri-La.

Clark is a Pennsylvania native who now lives in Virginia and has designed golf courses all over the globe. With The Battlefield, Clark and Kevin Atkinson created the 3,000-yard, par-54 layout, The Battlefield with more than 100 feet of elevation change. Each hole on The Battlefield is named in honor of an Oklahoma veteran of World War II.

Clark discusses his philosophy for building a short course and the strategy behind building the greens and what he hopes guests take away from playing this unique golfing experience:

Do you think a course like The Battlefield can convince people that there’s just as much thrill to playing shorter courses as there is on a championship course?

Absolutely. I’ve done over a dozen short courses. A lot of them are what you’d call chip-and-putts where you bring three clubs – a putter, a sand wedge and pitching wedge. The Battlefield is entirely different. It’s a championship golf course. It’s a basic combination of a lot of great par 3s. It has a standalone value as far as there are three courses in one – the championship course, then there are several tees for average players and there’s a chip-and-putt tee where you can take three clubs, a couple of balls, and off you go. It was devised that way as an alternative for a lot of the hotel guests and the members.

The Battlefield is built on a dramatic parcel of land. What are you most pleased with when you look at how the routing and the overall experience turned out?

The land has amazing trees that were pretty well spaced out and we managed to keep all of them. The routing was done in such a way, we have great separation of holes even though it’s a relatively tight site for that big of a golf course. We had a lot of elevation change and we incorporated the valley stream into a lot of holes. It’s very attractive. The one decision that was made was to put cart paths on the course. I had never done a par 3 that had cart paths, but I’m very glad we did because of the elevation change and it helps control drainage.

You really took your time with the greens, to make sure they were fun, yet challenging. Can you take us into your process of designing these greens?

It was an interesting way they evolved. They maintained the name The Battlefield … the whole thing had a lot to do with the second World War. We were going to make it look like a World War II battlefield. But that got toned down a little bit. We basically used the railroad ties to simulate a lot of that look in certain places. The greens themselves, I tried to get some similarities to midwestern architecture. You basically want to make them challenging. You have a 230-yard hole, you’re going to make a relatively flat green. You have an 80-yard hole, you’re going to make something with some fun undulation. The whole purpose was so people could enjoy it.

The highest praise you can pay this golf course is that as soon as you putt out on 18, you want to play the course all over again. What was your methodology and making sure each hole had its own unique character?

Each one of these is a one-shot hole with its own character and a unique demand put on the golfer. We have downhill holes, we have uphill holes, we put some illusional bunkering on the uphill holes. You really have to be spot on with your yardages from where you’re playing.

The beauty is Oklahoma, the wind blows. You definitely have a prevailing wind and it moves. That’s why so many good players come from Oklahoma. That was one of the attributes that we tried to figure into the design. There are also some greens that are designed for hole in ones. The 18th green, we took two big slopes in the back and put pin areas right below them so you could suck the ball back off that slope and watch it trundle down and maybe into the hole.

One of the things I didn’t even realize … I knew we were putting in some flowers, the native mix. I had no idea they would turn out as beautiful as they did.

It’s a resort and, believe it or not, The Battlefield was doing 150 rounds a day, which is phenomenal. I think the fact that it’s removed from the main golf course, it has its own clubhouse, cart storage and all of that gives it a lot of appeal to it. It’s a standalone golf course which is unique for a par-3 course.

Eagle Ridge Resort and Spa Unveils Exciting Spring Lineup: From Teachers’ Spring Break to Stellar Events to Relaxing Retreats

Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa, located in The Galena Territory, is thrilled to announce its sensational spring 2024 programming, offering an array of activities and events to delight guests of all ages. From celestial wonders to delightful traditions, the resort invites visitors to experience the beauty and charm of spring in the heart of Galena.

WHAT: Midwest Spring Getaways, Golf, Easter Traditions, Wellness Programming

WHERE: Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa, Galena, Ill.

DISTANCE: 2.5hrs from Chicago (Ill.), .5hr from Dubuque (Iowa), 1.5hrs from Davenport (Iowa), 1 hr from Milwaukee (Wisc.)

WHEN: Now through May 2024


Fun Events and BYOT Stargazing

  • The Midwest Comedy Tour: Comedy enthusiasts are invited to a night of laughter at The Midwest Comedy Tour on March 22 at 8p.m. Tickets priced at $30 per person are available for purchase here.
  • A Tribute to Frank Sinatra: Experience the timeless charm of Frank Sinatra’s music with Hunter Fuerste & His American Vintage Orchestra and the vocals of Bryan Anthony on April 13 from 7p.m. to 9:30p.m. Tickets priced at $70 per person with overnight packages starting at $519 per night.
  • Guests are invited to bring their telescopes and immerse themselves in the breathtaking views of the night sky. With rates starting at $139 on weekdays, Eagle Ridge offers one of the best stargazing locations in the nation, featuring spectacular celestial events throughout spring.

Holidays + Traditions

  • Locals and resort guests alike are invited to join in the Easter festivities with the resort’s annual Easter Brunch on March 31, featuring an array of delicious offerings and fun activities for the whole family. Priced at $39 per adult and $22 per child ages four to 11, reservations can be made by calling 815-776-5050. Easter weekend is set to offer entertainment for all ages, featuring a variety of activities including coloring contests, an indoor playland, a reading of “The Tale of Peter Rabbit,” Easter Bunny photo opps, along with an Easter parade and an egg hunt.
  • Celebrate Mother’s Day in style with the Mother’s Day Champagne Brunch on May 12, treating moms to a day of indulgence and relaxation.
  • Experience an unforgettable Memorial Day weekend (May 24-27) packed with activities suitable for all ages. From indoor and outdoor games to bonfires, boating, fishing adventures, and enchanting Champagne Sunset Cruises on the picturesque Lake Galena, the options are endless. Plus, indulge in the resort’s Memorial Day weekend package offering a 50% discount on the third night for guests staying Friday through Sunday.

Teachers’ Spring Break Special

  • Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa extends a special rate starting at $109 per night and including 20% off at Stonedrift Spa for teachers, available from March 1 to April 24, 2024.

Swinging into Golf Season

  • Golf enthusiasts can dust off their clubs and enjoy the resort’s four award-winning golf courses, along with exclusive amenities tailored for golfers. Tee-times, membership offers, overnight packages and special events and tournaments can be booked on the resort’s website.

Stonedrift Spa Wellness Programming

  • Accessible to resort guests and locals alike,  Stonedrift Spa’s brand-new Wellness Programming initiative is a comprehensive series of wellness experiences designed to cater to the diverse needs of guests. From fitness enthusiasts to those seeking mindfulness and stress relief, the program offers a range of activities and services aimed at promoting balance, relaxation, and vitality. Alongside this groundbreaking offering, the spa management is proud to reveal the grand opening of the Wellness Studio—an intimate space dedicated to nurturing holistic well-being. For a relaxing break, guests can enjoy group classes as well as a wide range of offerings including 13 private treatment rooms, couple’s suites, a Vichy shower room, breathe and detox rooms, hair salon, barbershop, saunas, and more.

With weekday packages starting at $139 per night, the resort offers a wide range of spring experiences to suit a spa, golf, family, romance, workation, and any other type of getaway. For more info on specials and packages, guests can visit or call (800) 892-2269.

Panmure Golf Club

Panmure Golf Club – A Must Play on Your Next Scotland Golf Trip

Walk in the steps of legendary Ben Hogan, where he prepared for his 1953 Open victory

American golfers naturally gravitate to Scotland as one of their top bucket list destinations. The home of golf features such iconic golf experiences as The Old Course at St. Andrews, Royal Dornoch, Muirfield, Prestwick, North Berek, Carnoustie Golf Links, and the site of The Open Championship this summer, Troon, to name a few.

While these historic venues top any golfer’s list, Scotland is also home to hundreds of other wonderful under-the-radar courses that are rich in history and provide an authentic Scottish golf experience. One of those must-plays: Panmure Golf Club, located only 1.5 miles from Carnoustie and a 45-minute drive from St. Andrews.

Celebrating its 125th anniversary (1899) in 2024 at its current site in Barry, Panmure is the world’s 21st oldest golf club. The original layout was designed by Old Tom Morris and constructed by R. Duff of Edinburgh, who also built the New Course at St Andrews and Muirfield.

Many of the original holes remain. In the 1920’s, five-time Open champion James Braid suggested modifications that became the most significant updates to Panmure over the past century. As a result, some of the charming characteristics include holes designed by these greats: Braid’s par-3, 180-yard 9th hole, with its undulating green protected by large bunkers and dunes, and Old Tom’s par-4, 396-yard 12th hole which requires an accurate approach shot to carry the Buddon Burn guarding the front of the green.

Today, Panmure is a timeless experience with its authentic course and clubhouse. The par-70 course measures 6,551 yards and combines the best elements of links and heathland, with tight fairways, challenging carries and undulating greens. True to links golf, holes play mostly firm and fast while the rolling fairways wind through dunes and pine trees, leading to greens that are protected by proper Scottish bunkers.

Panmure has hosted many prestigious championships over the years, ranging from national amateur tournaments to final qualifying for The Open Championship. It’s also the 2024 qualifying venue for the Seniors Open at Carnoustie. Plus, it was recently nominated for best £100-to-£250 green fee course at the Scottish Golf Tourism awards and is ranked No. 34 among Golf World’s Top 100 Courses in Scotland. Golf Digest also ranks it No. 32 in Scotland on its list of The Best Golf Courses in Every Country.

Panmure’s iconic clubhouse is also one of the finest old golf buildings in Scotland and was modeled – both architecturally and spiritually – after Royal Calcutta Golf Club. It offers three uniquely charming lounges, perfect for a post-round beverage.

Golfers can walk the fairways of Ben Hogan

Ben Hogan only played in one Open Championship, but he left an indelible mark on Scotland’s east coast because of how he won the game’s oldest major and how he prepared for it.

The Hawk famously captured the 1953 Open at Carnoustie Golf Links by shooting a final-round 68 while battling the flu. He topped four men by four shots in his lone voyage to Scotland, which came four years after an automobile accident that nearly killed him.

That journey, however, began two weeks earlier when Hogan, accompanied only by his caddy, Cecil Timms, arrived at Panmure to acclimate to the terrain of links golf and to acquaint himself with the smaller 1.62-inch British ball that was used at the time.

Hogan was the only participant in the Open given the privilege of playing at Panmure, which at the time was an extremely private club. He was able to practice away from the prying eyes of the public and press.

He would never play in the Open again, but his legacy at Panmure remains. The 6th hole, a 414-yard par 4, stroke index 1, was Hogan’s favorite on the course and is now named after him. He suggested to the club that a strategically placed pot bunker be built to the front right of the green. It was and it is still known as Hogan’s bunker.

The other legendary story from Hogan’s Panmure experience came on the par-4, 401-yard 17th. Hogan liked the green and spent much time putting there, but he wanted it to run quicker. So he asked head greenskeeper William Falconer if the mower could shave the green a tad tighter. Falconer said it was possible, but pointed to the mower and mentioned that Hogan was free to do it himself. He did, and word is that he later returned the mower to Falconer in pristine condition after insisting on cleaning it first.

Hogan never returned to Scotland, and the victory at Carnoustie marked the last major he’d ever win. The Scots still refer to him as the “Wee Ice Mon” because of his steely demeanor, determination, and ability to perform best under pressure. The Open victory, combined with his presence at Panmure during the preceding weeks, were enough for Hogan to forever remain a legend in the area.

Panmure remains a private member’s club, but welcomes visitors to experience the authentic, classic links. Are you ready to take on the Hogan challenge?


The Westin Maui Concludes $160 Million Transformation with the Debut of Kūkahi Tower

Kūkahi will also be home to a one-of-a-kind social center, Hana Hou by Westin

KĀ‘ANAPALI, MAUI – March 6, 2024 – The Westin Maui Resort & Spa, Kāʻanapali marks the completion of its multi-year, $160 million transformation with the complete renovation and rebranding of the Ocean Tower into Kūkahi Tower. Guests will now enjoy a completely refreshed design aimed at facilitating a calming and rejuvenating stay. Slated to debut in mid-April 2024, Hana Hou by Westin – located within Kūkahi Tower – will be the first resort venue of its kind in Hawai‘i featuring a 10,000-square-foot social center for guests and the community to gather and enjoy arcade games, Topgolf Swing Suites, a bar & lounge, and more.

“Our original tower, which once stood alone, has been renamed Kūkahi, which literally means ‘to stand alone’ or ‘stand upright’ in Hawaiian,” said Joshua Hargrove, general manager of the Westin Maui. “But like many Hawaiian concepts, it has a deeper meaning: the element and energy force that creates growth from the land. In line with this theme, our hope is that guests in Kūkahi would experience an empowering sense of well-being and personal growth during their time here.”

When entering a Kūkahi room guests are greeted with a design that combines simplicity and elegance, brought to life by a natural palette. Clean architectural lines, rich wood finishes, and subtle contrasts woven throughout the textile selections create a calming, bright and sophisticated atmosphere. Each room features curated details like bespoke artwork, unique printed textiles and woven area rugs designed specifically for Kūkahi. A generous lanai and incredible ocean views expand the living space and cement the experience in Kūkahi.

The design of Kūkahi Tower is inspired by a poem found in the Bishop library that describes the location of the resort in the early 1800s. The poem describes the “paʻūpili mist” – the light rain that commonly falls in the early hours of the morning in this area. As the water surges from the mountains and moves from the land towards the ocean, a misty fog hangs in the air. As the sun starts to shine, the paʻūpili mist settles on the pili grass leaving a “million points of starlight” behind. This evokes the image of light that infuses life and energy, and can be connected to the concepts of “inner self discovery” and “positive energy and wellness,” which are at the core of Westin Maui’s resort experience.

Notable room features include original, wall-mounted wood sculptures; and a sleek, modern entertainment center with built in storage and an incorporated desk with outlets and USB charging ports. In the bathroom, guests enjoy warm tones of wood mingled with marble accompanied by striking espresso metal accents and a stunning illuminated vanity mirror.

Anchored within Kūkahi will be Hana Hou by Westin. Named after the Hawaiian expression which typically translates “encore” or “to do again, repeat, or renew,” Hana Hou creates a space where guests will want to partake in another game and another laugh through the fusion of tranquility and excitement of this cutting-edge arcade space. Hana Hou will feature a variety of entertainment for all ages, including Topgolf Swing Suites; duckpin bowling; virtual reality; modern and classic arcade games; a Keiki Club; and a bar & lounge with food and beverage offerings. The venue will be open to all guests and the general public in mid-April 2024.

Alongside the redesign of Kūkahi Tower, the resort also recently welcomed Ulu Kitchen by acclaimed chef Peter Merriman. Ulu Kitchen specializes in a blend of old-fashioned Hawaiian hospitality with carefully crafted food and beverages that celebrate the rich bounty of Hawai‘i’s fishermen, ranchers and farms – all served in an outstanding ocean view setting.

The resort began this transformative redevelopment following its acquisition by a joint venture including Trinity Investments and other institutional investors in 2017. Trinity’s in-house asset management and development teams led the renovation and repositioning plan for the resort.

To celebrate the launch of Kūkahi and Hana Hou, travelers can book the Hana Hou Package which includes reduced room rates paired with a $100 Hana Hou Game Credit per stay. The package is available now when booking four nights or more and is valid for stays beginning May 1, 2024.

For more information about Kūkahi Tower, visit

Breaking the Grass Ceiling in Golf At the Broadmoor, Women Are Seeing Green

ON SACRED GOLF GROUND IN COLORADO SPRINGS, CO (March 4, 2024) – At the legendary    The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, the resort’s two golf courses are setting records for play and reservations by people of all ages – but especially women and girls. This is sacred land in the world of golf, where Jack Nicklaus won his first Amateur title and Annika Sörenstam won the U.S. Women’s Open. In 2025, the resort will again host the U.S. Senior Open.  

Now, The Broadmoor in partnership with Callaway Golf is teeing up the resort’s first-ever women’s golf weekend, May 17-20, dubbed Breaking the Grass Ceiling. 

Aimed at seasoned female golfers AND those new to the sport, the inaugural women’s weekend promises to convey nuances of the game and to enhance existing skills. The programming joins the resort’s long-standing “Boots are Made for Wading” women’s fly fishing camps, which routinely sell out and excel at bringing together aficionados and novices to the sport.  

Reservations are available now and include accommodations for three nights; two rounds of golf; clinics led by PGA/LPGA Professionals; a custom fitting for an Odyssey Ai-ONE putter; a TravisMathew Women pop-up shop; inspiring guest speakers including Sörenstam and Comedian LouLou Gonzalez; plus, sumptuous dinners.

Entry fee is $2,386 single occupancy/$3,536 double occupancy, and spaces are extremely limited. To book and for more details, visit     

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