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SD, Palm Springs, or Orando


pulledabill
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Got a week off mid Feb. Researching a golf trip to either Orlando, SD, or Palm Springs. Looks like the warmer weather is Orlando but does anybody have an idea  which area is more affordable considering its high season?  Digging around at all the courses is ming boggling, especially Orlando. Thoughts?

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Well, here's my 2 cents...  I've been to Orlando a few times over the past 15 years in mid- to late January and it was cold and wet.  Maybe you will have better luck a month later.  The last time I went I only played a few courses in Orlando area, and I found it difficult to get around, especially with the toll roads; guess I'm just a country boy!  I spent 3 days up at the World Golf Village in St. Augustine and played the courses there; very nice, but wet when we were there.  I also drove over to Tampa/St. Pete and got a round in with @revkev and @fozcycle, which was great... still chilly and breezy.

It's plenty warm in SD and Palm Springs that time of the year and a lot drier.  Only trip I took to SD was many years ago; don't have current info there.  What do you consider affordable?  I'm headed to Palm Springs the middle of January again for 2 weeks.  Courses typically run $90-200+ but there are deals. You might also consider Phoenix or Tucson; I've been there a few times and will probably go to Phoenix next winter.

For only a one week trip traveling across the US is two full travel days, so consider that.  Staying on the west coast allows you to get there in half a day.  Are you planning to play different courses, or are you planning on staying and playing at one location?  Some places have a "players card" deal that is good for the entire year that gets you a couple of free rounds and a discount on other rounds.  If you play all of your rounds there, it's still a good deal for only a week.

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13 hours ago, Kenny B said:

Well, here's my 2 cents...  I've been to Orlando a few times over the past 15 years in mid- to late January and it was cold and wet.  Maybe you will have better luck a month later.  The last time I went I only played a few courses in Orlando area, and I found it difficult to get around, especially with the toll roads; guess I'm just a country boy!  I spent 3 days up at the World Golf Village in St. Augustine and played the courses there; very nice, but wet when we were there.  I also drove over to Tampa/St. Pete and got a round in with @revkev and @fozcycle, which was great... still chilly and breezy.

It's plenty warm in SD and Palm Springs that time of the year and a lot drier.  Only trip I took to SD was many years ago; don't have current info there.  What do you consider affordable?  I'm headed to Palm Springs the middle of January again for 2 weeks.  Courses typically run $90-200+ but there are deals. You might also consider Phoenix or Tucson; I've been there a few times and will probably go to Phoenix next winter.

For only a one week trip traveling across the US is two full travel days, so consider that.  Staying on the west coast allows you to get there in half a day.  Are you planning to play different courses, or are you planning on staying and playing at one location?  Some places have a "players card" deal that is good for the entire year that gets you a couple of free rounds and a discount on other rounds.  If you play all of your rounds there, it's still a good deal for only a week.

Thanks for the thoughts.  I guess for me $150 or less would be my goal for golf.  The possibility of rain, the travel time, and the lack of options that fit my schedule to Orlando from PDX are really not the best.  Rental car prices are crazy high with Orlando being the lowest from places (SD, Austin, Vegas, PHX, Tuscson, and PS) Ive researched.  Green fees seem the highest in Palm Springs, but after some digging around I actually found some reasonable travel, flight, and car packages.  I will just deal with the green fees and enjoy my time.  The back drop in Palm Springs really looks amazing and I will get more golf in than traveling east.  

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DRIVER: Cobra F9 10.5  Tensei AV Blue 65g

3W- Callway XR PRO 16 stiff

5W- Alpha- Mitsubishi Diamana  Redboard w/band

Irons- Mizuno JPX 919 Tours with S KBS Tour shafts

Hyrbid- TM 4h mid-rescue

Vokey- Vokey SM5 51 degrees,  SM7 Wedges 54 and 58 1/2 half 3 degrees upright

Putter- Taylor Made Rossa Monza Mini Spider

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10 hours ago, pulledabill said:

Thanks for the thoughts.  I guess for me $150 or less would be my goal for golf.  The possibility of rain, the travel time, and the lack of options that fit my schedule to Orlando from PDX are really not the best.  Rental car prices are crazy high with Orlando being the lowest from places (SD, Austin, Vegas, PHX, Tuscson, and PS) Ive researched.  Green fees seem the highest in Palm Springs, but after some digging around I actually found some reasonable travel, flight, and car packages.  I will just deal with the green fees and enjoy my time.  The back drop in Palm Springs really looks amazing and I will get more golf in than traveling east.  

There are certainly some very nice and expensive courses in the Palm Springs to La Quinta area.  Since I'm paying for two, we don't play the high end courses, although I have played many of them (Indian Wells, PGA West, etc) when I had meetings there... in the summer!!!!!!  🥵  But prices were great!!!

Some of our favs are:

  • Indian Canyons (I like the North Course best); old 1950's houses; good food at the South course clubhouse
  • Westin Mission Hills - Gary Player and Pete Dye courses; might be able to get a deal there
  • Cimarron Golf Club - no trees!  We are staying at the condos next to the course parking lot.
  • Desert Willow - both courses!
  • If you are out near Indio, both courses at Terra Lago are good, as is Big Rock at Indian Springs... good pub food with patio seating.
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We don’t stop playing the game because we get old; we get old because we stop playing the game.”

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Being from the east coast area, I loved Palm Springs but I went in September a few years ago. I have listed some of my favorite courses in the Orlando area.

https://www.southerndunes.com/

https://www.falconsfire.com/?utm_source=GMB&utm_medium=organic&utm_campaign=LocalSearch

https://www.eaglecreekorlando.com/

There are quite a few higher priced courses, I just listed several that I have played.

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Irons: :cobra-small: 4 - PW King Forged Tec with Aerotech Steelfiber I95 Stiff

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25 minutes ago, GaDawg said:

Being from the east coast area, I loved Palm Springs but I went in September a few years ago. I have listed some of my favorite courses in the Orlando area.

https://www.southerndunes.com/

https://www.falconsfire.com/?utm_source=GMB&utm_medium=organic&utm_campaign=LocalSearch

https://www.eaglecreekorlando.com/

There are quite a few higher priced courses, I just listed several that I have played.

Eagle Creek was not one of my favorite courses.  I found the fairway bunkers very penal.  Very high lips that I had no chance to even get close to the green (basically a greenside bunker shot just to get out).  It wouldn't have been so bad, but not having played it before, I was not aware of lines to take off the tee and ended up in quite a few of them.

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We don’t stop playing the game because we get old; we get old because we stop playing the game.”

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For San Deigo, more affordable options in the city would be Balboa or Coronado; older school tracks with views/character. RB Inn and Encinitas Ranch are solid tracks outside the city proper in the $100 range, and Encinitas has ocean views if that is of interest. Further south maybe Singing Hills or Steele Canyon would fit a similar bill as RB Inn golf-wise, but I haven't played there in quite a while.

Nice tracks under $200 (at least I think they are under $200 still 😬 but haven't looked up the latest rates) - not sure how much driving you are looking to do as the distance from downtown on this list varies quite a bit, but IMO the list would be Torrey North, La Costa, Maderas, Barona Creek, Rams Hill 

Over $200 public access tracks: Torrey South & Aviara

If I was budgeting for <$150/round & willing to drive I would put together a 4 day trip like this:

1. Coronado - course is nice if not spectacular but the views are 10/10, super easy to get to if you are staying in/around downtown

2. Torrey North - should be A+ condition in Feb; course layout isn't as interesting or nostalgic as South but for >$100 less you get the same views and a still awesome course that pros play on yearly (for one round lol)

3. Barona (play after 11am for big discount) - most underrated course in San Diego IMO. I would play this over the better known Maderas every day, but some disagree. Most would agree that if you aren't afraid of a 90 min drive, Rams Hill would be better than both and would give you a Palm Springs feel w/ mountains/valley in the background 

4. La Costa Legends - Tour stop from the 90s, cool layout, should be really good condition and a great resort. If planning on a 36 hole day you could do 18 on Legends and 18 on Champions for less than trying to play Torrey North and South back to back (though budget-permitting I would argue that playing Torrey South over La Costa Champions would be better value even at $150 more)

 

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Palm Springs is most likely to have the best weather, I go there frequently and all I can say is there are more golf courses there than you can get to in a lifetime.  Feb. will be high season so you'll be paying top rates which you can mitigate by playing twilight.  There are some public courses with reasonable rates, do your shopping for prices, they have packages and if you want to do last minute booking there are a couple outfits that broker times at a pretty good savings.   Hanging by the swimming pool bar can be just as good as the golf.

If you go to Orlando, just stay at Bay Hill they have great packages to stay on the golf course including meals and golf.  I have stayed there going on a dozen times going back to when Arnie would be there every day greeting guests. Still the best deal in Florida. I figure the pros play the course 5 days in row... so can I. Eliminates need for a rental car.  Make friends with the locals there and you will probably end up with a dinner invite. You will  probably see a few tour pros while there as well. Oh and the caddies are great, lot's of tour stories... This is a bucket list trip.

San Diego will be cool that time of year. They have Torrey Pines, Balboa Park, Mission Bay Exec. Course and Coronado.  There are also some pricey semi private and resort tracks that are good you can even drive up to Newport Beach where there are several great courses.  You could also think about heading down to Ensenada, MX to play Bajamar...  Bottom line, you can get a lot of variety here with all price points in play. 

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33 minutes ago, labillyboy said:

Palm Springs is most likely to have the best weather, I go there frequently and all I can say is there are more golf courses there than you can get to in a lifetime.  Feb. will be high season so you'll be paying top rates which you can mitigate by playing twilight.  There are some public courses with reasonable rates, do your shopping for prices, they have packages and if you want to do last minute booking there are a couple outfits that broker times at a pretty good savings.   Hanging by the swimming pool bar can be just as good as the golf.

If you go to Orlando, just stay at Bay Hill they have great packages to stay on the golf course including meals and golf.  I have stayed there going on a dozen times going back to when Arnie would be there every day greeting guests. Still the best deal in Florida. I figure the pros play the course 5 days in row... so can I. Eliminates need for a rental car.  Make friends with the locals there and you will probably end up with a dinner invite. You will  probably see a few tour pros while there as well. Oh and the caddies are great, lot's of tour stories... This is a bucket list trip.

San Diego will be cool that time of year. They have Torrey Pines, Balboa Park, Mission Bay Exec. Course and Coronado.  There are also some pricey semi private and resort tracks that are good you can even drive up to Newport Beach where there are several great courses.  You could also think about heading down to Ensenada, MX to play Bajamar...  Bottom line, you can get a lot of variety here with all price points in play. 

Where ever you go, you need to eliminate the need for a rental car.  Hard to get and expensive if you can find one, with the pandemic.  

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2 hours ago, hartrick11 said:

For San Deigo, more affordable options in the city would be Balboa or Coronado; older school tracks with views/character. RB Inn and Encinitas Ranch are solid tracks outside the city proper in the $100 range, and Encinitas has ocean views if that is of interest. Further south maybe Singing Hills or Steele Canyon would fit a similar bill as RB Inn golf-wise, but I haven't played there in quite a while.

Nice tracks under $200 (at least I think they are under $200 still 😬 but haven't looked up the latest rates) - not sure how much driving you are looking to do as the distance from downtown on this list varies quite a bit, but IMO the list would be Torrey North, La Costa, Maderas, Barona Creek, Rams Hill 

Over $200 public access tracks: Torrey South & Aviara

If I was budgeting for <$150/round & willing to drive I would put together a 4 day trip like this:

1. Coronado - course is nice if not spectacular but the views are 10/10, super easy to get to if you are staying in/around downtown

2. Torrey North - should be A+ condition in Feb; course layout isn't as interesting or nostalgic as South but for >$100 less you get the same views and a still awesome course that pros play on yearly (for one round lol)

3. Barona (play after 11am for big discount) - most underrated course in San Diego IMO. I would play this over the better known Maderas every day, but some disagree. Most would agree that if you aren't afraid of a 90 min drive, Rams Hill would be better than both and would give you a Palm Springs feel w/ mountains/valley in the background 

4. La Costa Legends - Tour stop from the 90s, cool layout, should be really good condition and a great resort. If planning on a 36 hole day you could do 18 on Legends and 18 on Champions for less than trying to play Torrey North and South back to back (though budget-permitting I would argue that playing Torrey South over La Costa Champions would be better value even at $150 more)

 

Played La Costa in March, absolutely HORRIBLE condition. Champions course shows years of neglect. A $10 muni in a 3rd world country will be in better shape. The Legends was closed and torn up either for re surfacing or re-modeling. The staff secretly mentioned that there is no money being spent on the Champions course and yet they were charging about $100. We were warned by others but we had prepaid. Disaster!

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A good option in Orlando is Reunion Resort. There are three courses there. The last time I was there we played two of them and they were both good. They offer pretty good package deals with condo/hotel, breakfast and green fees. The aforementioned Southern Dunes used to be an outstanding track but I haven't played it in a long time. Celebration is good but a little pricey. 

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San Diego weather is almost always good.  Can be as much as a 10° temp difference between coast and inland.  Have family in Carlsbad and the golf in that area (North County) is great.  Besides that, almost every major golf manufacturer is located in Carlsbad and side trips to their facilities (and fitting labs) are worth the time.

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On 12/4/2021 at 9:02 PM, Kenny B said:

Well, here's my 2 cents...  I've been to Orlando a few times over the past 15 years in mid- to late January and it was cold and wet.  Maybe you will have better luck a month later.  The last time I went I only played a few courses in Orlando area, and I found it difficult to get around, especially with the toll roads; guess I'm just a country boy!  I spent 3 days up at the World Golf Village in St. Augustine and played the courses there; very nice, but wet when we were there.  I also drove over to Tampa/St. Pete and got a round in with @revkev and @fozcycle, which was great... still chilly and breezy.

It's plenty warm in SD and Palm Springs that time of the year and a lot drier.  Only trip I took to SD was many years ago; don't have current info there.  What do you consider affordable?  I'm headed to Palm Springs the middle of January again for 2 weeks.  Courses typically run $90-200+ but there are deals. You might also consider Phoenix or Tucson; I've been there a few times and will probably go to Phoenix next winter.

For only a one week trip traveling across the US is two full travel days, so consider that.  Staying on the west coast allows you to get there in half a day.  Are you planning to play different courses, or are you planning on staying and playing at one location?  Some places have a "players card" deal that is good for the entire year that gets you a couple of free rounds and a discount on other rounds.  If you play all of your rounds there, it's still a good deal for only a week.

Happy to assist with Palm Springs! Have been booking discounted golf here for over 20 years.....

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Your less expensive area would be Orlando. Lots of terrific courses, like Grand Cyprus, Disney courses, RTJ Jr/Sr in Celebration, and on and on. The most beautiful was Palm Desert, although I was there in May, playing the TPC Stadium, Indian Wells, & Silver Rock was fun. San Diego is my favorite with Torrey Pines 1 & 2, Aviara, Maderas, and so many more. Weather in all locations should be perfect, although Orlando can get rain. Check Hotels.com and Tee Off.com and see what deals you can get. Air fare into San Diego and Orlando should be similar, depending on where you depart. Personally in February I'd take San Diego. However, first of March I'm going to Vegas to play for a week...TPC Sumerlin, TPC Las Vegas, Bear's Best, Angel Park (2 Palmer courses), Coyote Springs (1 hr NE Nicklaus course-magnificent), Siena, and on and on. Good Luck!

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If you just looking for a warm get away then disregard the below. 
 

The end of Jan and feb at Bandon is the best deal in resort golf, imho. You can get really lucky with weather I have been there twice on my birthday in late jan and had two of my three days sunny and in the 50’s. Obviously you could run into some awful weather too but that can be part of the fun/experience. This is a not so well kept secret of PNW locals. The geography of the coastline and winds at that time of the year can lead to some surprisingly good weather for 1/3 the normal costs. 

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Don’t be so elitist. Pack a jacket and go to Myrtle Beach- you might get lucky with a few days in the high 60’s. 
 

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Consider north of the Tampa area.  Some really nice courses up there, World Woods, Lake Jovita, TPC Tampa Bay, Southern Hills Plantation to name a few. There are a couple of Golf Planners that can set up the golf, hotel (condo or houses, too) and car rental for you and help you out.

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