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If you love discovering hidden gems like we do, expand your bucket list to include some of these sweet and scenic resorts, sure to whet your golf travel appetite.

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The Pete Dye Course at French Lick entices. (Courtesy of FrenchLick.com)

French Lick Resort

The layout of golf at French Lick seems like rolling thunder. Good lightning strikes twice with French Lick Springs Hotel – stately with rocking chairs on the outer deck, a spa with stained glass windows, pools, casino, bowling alley and restaurants, plus West Baden Springs Hotel – considered the eighth wonder of the world for its enormous atrium dome.  Thomas the Train chugs with passengers between the hotels and shuttles transport between all locales including the stables, and downtown. Legendary courses by Pete Dye, Donald Ross and Tom Bendelow are the icing on the cake. https://www.frenchlick.com/golf

Baha Mar

“Designed for the spectacular” with a Jack Nicklaus signature course, this Bahamian delight is one on our list to visit. The shimmering turquoise ocean beckons all water sports while the white sand beach stretches beyond three luxury hotels, casino and 15 restaurants, including Madeline French Café and Bakery, all with provocative menus. Fresh caught conch anyone? Forget the hot rocks at ESPA, go for hot seashells instead and find the rocks in your cocktail at one of the 7 pools.  Get intimate with your mate or the wildlife at The Sanctuary, just a short flight from Boston to Paradise Island, Nassau. BAHA MAR, Nassau, Bahamas

Pronghorn

We’ve been to beautiful Bend and the first week of June skied Mt. Bachelor in the morning and golfed in shorts in the afternoon. But we have yet to experience the 5-star Pronghorn where they suggest to “Take the scenic winding road. Fish the locals-only hole. Ask the chef to surprise you. This is the mindset of the new Pronghorn. This is Living Well Perfected.” Tom Fazio and Jack Nicklaus championship courses follow the rugged landscape of lava flow rock formations, scraggly junipers and panoramic views of the Cascades. Bend has fresh mountain air, microbreweries and an efficient airport. PRONGHORN, Bend Oregon

 Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club

Pack your clubs and relish this iconic, centenarian resort deep in the woods near Pinehurst. Mid Pines and Pine Needles Courses designed by Donald Ross are ranked in the top 25 of America and have hosted US Opens and Amateur Championships. Springboard from here to the other famous courses in the Sandhills of North Carolina. The lodge and spa will feel like home away from home with fine dining to taproom menus. http://www.pineneedles-midpines.com/

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Stockton Seaview Hotel and Golf Club

Stockton Seaview Hotel and Golf Club

There is plenty to see from the Seaview Golf Course, site of the LPGA ShopRite. Since 1914, peepers and crickets serenade on the fairways along the seaside marsh with the bay and cityscape as the sea view. Troon Golf manages the Pines and Bay courses. Elegant accommodations along Reed’s Bay and the Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spa are as easy as pie to reach, just a few minutes from Atlantic City or 45 from Philly. https://www.stocktonseaview.com/

Four Seasons Resort Lanai

High tech, high service and Jack Nicklaus’ astounding Challenge at Manele, perched high above the Pacific equal a rare Hawaiian retreat. Hulopoe Bay below is a marine preserve, the Grand Canyon of snorkel safaris and home to spinner dolphins. An app alerts guests when they’re present. Learn the art of palm weaving, hula dancing or ukulele strumming poolside. Champagne sabering kicks off the evening and fresh seafood leads the exquisite cuisine at nine restaurants. Don’t miss the Ginger Snap Sandwich with Vanilla, Macadamia Nut, and Caramel Swirl Ice Cream at VIEWS at Manele. Ferry from Maui with the whales or splurge on their exclusive charter plane from Honolulu. https://www.fourseasons.com/lanai/

Sand Valley Golf Resort

Anticipation is high for the opening of Mammoth Dunes the end of May, 2018. The latest creation from David McKay Kidd will add to the golf splendor of Crenshaw-Coores’ Sand Valley Course which garnered many “best” awards since its inception last year. Following the dream golf portfolios of the Keiser family’s Bandon Dunes and Cabot Cliffs, this rugged sand/landscape is topped off with luxury accommodations, excellent food and above all else, top notch service. Add four lakes, Busch Gardens type ski shows and reel in the fun fishing, an hour and ½ drive north of Madison. SAND VALLEY, Rome, WI

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The Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort

The Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort

Sway to Riverside Rhythm or play architect A.W. Tillinghast’s first-ever design. 24 of Shawnee’s 27 holes are located on an island in the middle of the Delaware River.  Cross the Delaware with golf carts over the white bridge or by canoe. Near the Poconos, this scenic terrain is vibrant and verdant with lodging options from glamping to “extravagancing”. Visit the breweries, vineyards and local attractions. It’s summer – get outdoors and explore. Walk in the woods, chew the fat by the fire. Drive or fly into Newark, Allentown, Philadelphia or New York.  https://www.shawneeinn.com

Mt. Airy Casino Resort

It’s show time with famous headliners, nightlife, and matinees in the Poconos of Pennsylvania. Winning at the slots or your favorite game just might be the cherry on top of the vacation. If you’re a fan of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives like we are, Guy Fieri’s Mt. Pocono restaurant is a must. This is not your cookie cutter casino resort. He doesn’t skimp on the good stuff so burn the calories on the course where Architect Hal Purdy reinterpreted 18 famous holes from prestigious plans like Pebble Beach, Oakland Hills, Merion, Augusta National and more.  https://mountairycasino.com/golf/about-the-course/

Turning Stone Resort Casino

The Oneida Nation offers old world tribal dignity with upscale amenities and art that pulls it all together in the accommodations, night lounges, restaurants and spas. Golf holes carry the Oneida and English translated stories such as “Challenge of Courage” where “Oneida warriors of old braved their own challenges to survive alongside their brothers: the fox, raccoons, rabbits and deer that continue to thrive here today.” Five diverse golf courses, academy, dome and superstore complement the trophy hunting and salmon acres experiences. Casino gaming, boxing, headliner entertainment and fabulous food make this central New York spot ideal.  https://www.turningstone.com/golf

Nemacolin Woodlands Resort

When 84 Lumber’s Mr. Hardy turned Nemacolin over to his daughter Maggie, she added Shepherd’s Rock to the Mystic Rock golf venue, honoring “Dad, my shepherd.” She claims, “I’d put Nemacolin up against anybody on any continent.” Indeed, it is an all-encompassing resort with a shooting academy, Orvis fly fishing, zip lining, wildlife zoo, wall climbing, off roading, paintball, biking, hiking, and bowling. Place your bets at Lady Luck Casino or tour the art studio, car and plane museums. Focus on wellness at the spa or healing center. Go by Rolls Royce, Bentley or the shuttle that runs every few minutes. Accommodations are exquisite. Have your cake and eat it too. http://www.nemacolin.com

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The Buccaneer Virgin Islands

The Buccaneer

Celebrating its 70th anniversary in the Virgin Islands, the third generation of the Armstrong family is very experienced in delivering a beachy keen vacation on 340 tropical acres along the eastern end of St. Croix. Golf on their Bob Joyce designed course in under 4 hours leaving time to cultivate other relationships with cuisine, lounging poolside or seaside activities. It is less than a five-minute drive from the sightseeing, shopping and dining found in the historic town of Christiansted. Gratefully, the resort and island are back to normal after last year’s hurricane. Arrive by boat or plane. http://www.thebuccaneer.com

Wequassett Resort and Golf Club

There is nothing quite like Cape Cod and Wequassett delivers all the quintessential elements of the Cape. The flowers, five waterfront restaurants, views and service result in top ratings by top travel magazines. The 14th annual Jazz Festival will be held every Tuesday and Wednesday from June 28 through August on the Garden Terrace overlooking Pleasant Bay. The prestigious Cape Cod National is for members and Wequassett guests only. It’s sugar cookie good.  http://wequassett.com/

 

(Featured Image: Wequassett Resort and Golf Club, MA)

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