Your Guide to the Best Golf Courses in Palm Springs
Sun, stars, hotels, and hot springs—these are just a few of the draws that attract thousands of people to Palm Springs every year. The Palm Springs weather is a natural wonder, so much so that the city’s population nearly triples in the winter months. And snowbirds flock to Palm Springs from all over the world to wait out the worst parts of the winter in a picturesque desert paradise. There’s a lot to love about the Springs, but if there’s one thing the city loves best, it’s golf.
With over 100 golf courses in the Greater Palm Springs area –more than anywhere else in the state of California, you might find yourself thinking “too many holes, too little time.” The sheer number of Palm Springs courses to be conquered can be overwhelming, but this guide will help point you in the direction of the greenest greens and help you avoid the rough on your search for the best Palm Springs, California golf courses.
First, let's take a look at some of the qualities that make Palm Springs such an ideal location for the sport. Despite the astounding lack of rainfall in the region (about three inches a year), courses in the Coachella Valley keep their fairways lush by way of an intricate irrigation system of water directed from a massive aquifer. This, combined with conscientious water use, keeps the courses beautiful while players can still appreciate the beautiful Palm Springs weather.
As a major stop on both the PGA and LPGA tours, the community support for and amenities available to golfers is unparalleled. In Palm Springs, golf is more than just a major part of the local economy, it’s a part of the lifestyle. The stunning backdrop of mountain ranges doesn’t exactly do the experience a disservice, either.
Palm Springs is undoubtedly one of the greatest golf destinations in the world, so let’s take a look at some of the best of the best.
Designed to accentuate the natural landscape and preserve resources, Palm Desert’s Willow Golf Resort consists of two unforgettable Palm Springs golf courses. Since 1997 Firecliff has offered seasoned golfers an opportunity to put their skills to the test while they are guided through a natural exhibit of the beauty of the desert. Sand and water work in harmony to add both character and challenge to the experience. Looking for a more laid-back day out or a warm-up lap before taking on Firecliff? The Mountain View course offers the same unique charm at a less intense level, opening up Desert Willow’s doors to up-and-comers and more casual golf fans.
If you're in search of a new construction home in the area, there's good news. Residents of Palm Desert can enjoy a significantly reduced rate, as the resort was opened in partnership with the city. It's the perfect opportunity to have a top California golf course, right in your backyard.
Golfers looking for a taste of the prestige and glory of a Palms Springs Golf course designed for the pros need to look no further than La Quinta’s PGA West. Featuring six of the highest-caliber golf courses in California, you’ll find no shortage of challenges in La Quinta. Of the three Palm Springs golf courses that are open to the public, The Stadium is the most famous. Named for the natural spectator seating melded into the landscape, the course is a spectacle of its own, building anticipation up to the notorious island green at hole #17, aptly nicknamed “Alcatraz.” One of its namesake’s best designs, the Jack Nicklaus Tournament Course is a striking desert-themed course that rewards accuracy and is a favorite among true ball strikers.
The newest of the three, the Greg Norman Course, is a bit more accessible to golfers of all skill levels without toning down the excitement. It’s a real looker, too. Nestled in the bottom of a prehistoric body of water, the course is lined with a spectrum of enchanting flora along 60 gorgeous acres of fairway.
The crown jewel of Indian Wells Golf Resort it’s 53,000 square foot clubhouse. Featuring an extensive pro shop, fine dining, and an event venue, the clubhouse is also a renowned wedding destination, so you won’t have to choose between your two true loves on your special day.
As for the golf, the two courses—the Celebrity and Players are some of the most highly reviewed in the country, topping best-of lists since their inception in 2006 and 2007, respectively. In the Celebrity course, golfers flow through water-lined fairways, crossing babbling brooks and passing cascading waterfalls for a breathtaking 18 holes. The Players Course honors the land it was built on, working the already existing trees into the design and giving the visitor a sense of a classic course with modern updates.
This is just a scratch on the surface of the incomparable golf you’ll find in Palm Springs. No matter what time of year it is, or what stage in your golf game you're at, Palm Springs has a home (and a hole) for you.
Contributed to Your Home blog
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