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Golf on the Slopes

Larry Olmsted
From the Print Edition:
Matthew McConaughey, March/April 2011

(continued from page 5)

Despite a passionate following of local golfers, the Beehive State has fewer big-name courses than just about any other. At the same time, recent Olympic venue Park City, a very short drive from Salt Lake City, has more big-time skiing than any other U.S. locale, with three world-class resorts, Deer Valley, the Canyons and Park City Mountain Resort, any of which could anchor its own ski destination, all in one quaint place.

The result is a summer glut of deluxe lodging and dining, and for the savvy visitor, some great golf. Like Colorado's Red Sky Ranch, a number of top ski-country private clubs align themselves with one or more luxury hotels to allow very limited outside play. In Park City, the Stein Eriksen Lodge (steinlodge.com) does just that with the Pete Dye-designed Canyon Course at the Promontory Club and the Nicklaus-designed Park Meadows.

The new and very lavish Sky Lodge (theskylodge.com) on Main Street, easily the best in-town lodging, is also trying to work out some private-access deals for guests. For everyone else, there is a very high-quality 36-hole public facility at Soldier Hollow (soldierhollow.com), the site of the cross-country events in the 2002 Winter Olympic Games.

The town's own municipal Park City Golf Club is a well-above-average layout to round out the field, and out the back door of the excellent Hotel Park City. But the best course in the region is the very private Mark O'Meara design at the Talisker Club.

In an interesting reversal of fortune, this private residential community just acquired the Canyons, one of the five largest ski resorts in the country, with several hotels, including a new Waldorf Astoria collection spin-off, so the enticing possibility of limited public access to Talisker may be coming soon.

Larry Olmsted is a Cigar Aficionado contributing editor.

The Best of the Rest

Aspen, CO: Great skiing, dining and lodging, but shockingly limited public golf. Best in the area is the schizophrenic Arthur Hills–designed Ironbridge, with a famed stretch of gravity defying holes, open to guests of the St. Regis, and usually The Little Nell and Hotel Jerome. (ironbridgeclub.com)

Banff Springs, Alberta: Known as the Castle of the Rockies, the Fairmont Banff Springs hotel has an epic Stanley Thompson course with one of the world’s greatest par-3s, the Devil’s Cauldron. Skiing is at nearby Lake Louise resort. (fairmont.com/banffsprings)

Boyne Highlands, MI: Skiing is a purely local attraction, but golf is worth the trip, with four 18-hole courses, including the caddie-equipped Robert Trent Jones Jr. Heather Course, a Golf Magazine Top 100, and the unique Donald Ross Memorial Course, a tribute design reproducing the master’s best holes. (boyne.com)


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