With fall in full swing in the Northeast, avid golfers are focusing their drives and puts on warm weather spots nationwide. Golf courses and greens keepers in South Carolina, Florida, Arizona, California and even Alabama, are gearing up for the increase in demand for tee times and golf course wear and tear.
GolfPak (tel. 888/848-8941; www.golfpaktravel.com), a golf travel site putting together tee time reservations and golf vacation packages since 1975, has a list of several hotel and golf packages worldwide. They have weekly specials highlighting specific courses, specials that highlight many courses nationwide, featured destinations, rental car info, packages, price quotes on courses, a vacation finder, and maps to golf clubs. The all-inclusive site works very efficiently and makes shopping for golf package tailored to your needs extremely easy. The site even lets you sort by price or number of days for your trip. You can also add days on most packages for the same price as the deal's original offer.
We found a "Stay and Play Weekly Special" to Don Shula's Golf Club in Miami for the month of November for just $124.93, down from a normal winter rate of approximately $147 per person. The package includes accommodations at The Golf Club, one 18-hole round of golf with a cart, and all taxes. Prices are per individual person based on two golfers sharing a cart and a hotel room. Located in Miami Lakes just a 25-minute ride from Miami's International Airport, Don Shula's Golf Club is a full service resort with a championship "Senator" Golf Course and a lighted par-three course for night play and practice. Several restaurants, including the well-reviewed Shula's Steak House, are on the premises. The hotel also has a gigantic spa and fitness center offering everything from a weight room to a Pilates and Yoga classes.
To give you an idea of the normal "Specials" offered by GolfPak, a three-night four round of golf deal to Palm Springs with accommodations at the Sonoran Suites at Canterra starts $566.20. During your stay at the resort, tee times are available at Escena, Silverrock, Mission Hills North and Cimarron, all top-notch golf, challenging courses. Cart per two golfers and all taxes are included. This deal caters to traveling foursomes as your prices for this deal are based on quadruple occupancy in a three-bedroom suite. Escena is a Jack Nicklaus-designed golf course. Silverrock the future home of the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic. Sonaran Suites is a condominium-style vacation resort with two pools, a fitness center and mountain views. Each suite is equipped with a full-service kitchen. Daily maid service is not included. Prices for non-golfers are available for all GolfPak packages.
For a beach vacation special close to several golf courses, the ocean-front Crown Reef Resort (tel. 888/500-6600, www.crownreef.com/golf_specials.cfm) in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina has an outstanding mid-week golf special for the remainder of 2005 and another "Early Bird 2006" special. Both packages are stay and play packages. For this fall, an arrive on Sunday three-night special with an oceanfront room and three rounds of golf at the Grand Dunes or Tidewater Plantation (one round at either course) and two rounds at your choice of the Pine Lakes International, Myrtlewood Pine Hills, Palmetto, Farmstead, and Meadowlands courses. This package only costs $254 from October 31 to November 13 and then goes down to just $220 from November 14 to November 27, 2005. This represents a savings of up to $45 on each courses normal greens fees. Conditions in November can be windy and cool by South Carolina factors, but with temperatures in the high 50s and low 60s, leave your wool pants at home. The Early Bird 2006 special represents a savings of up to $50 per day. The five-day five round of golf, five breakfast special starts at $465 per golfer. The price of the package is based on double occupancy hotel accommodations and is available for only one week between April 12 and April 19, 2006.
For those traveling to New York who want to play in tough conditions through the winter and fall, the Dyker Heights Beach Golf Course (tel. 718/836-9722, www.nycteetimes.com) in Brooklyn remains open all year round, everyday, weather permitting. Think of the winter golfers as the polar bears of the golfing game. The 71-par 6,504 yard course with views of the New York Harbor and the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge is where Earl Woods, Tiger's dad, played his first golf as an officer while stationed at nearby Fort Hamilton. Rates for the public golf course run between $14 and $42 dollars.