Big Changes Coming to TPC Scottsdale 0 6

Big changes are coming to the TPC Scottsdale to give the famed venue of the Waste Management Phoenix Open teeth to bite back at PGA Tour players who have torn the place up.

The biggest change will move the tee box of No. 18 back and to the left to discourage long hitters from playing left of the water hazard by the corporate hospitality tents.

The change should bring both the water and fairway bunkers back into play and return drama to a finishing hole that is often anticlimactic after the excitement generated on Nos. 15 through 17.

Also on the drawing board for the Weiskopf/Moorish design:

Lengthening the short par 4 second hole by moving the green left and beyond the cart path behind the green. A new green would be cut into a mound just east of No. 9 green.

Eliminating the split fairway on No. 13. The left fairway would be returned to native desert. The massive rock that the gallery famously helped Tiger Woods move in 1999 will remain where it is.

The changes are part of $15 million in renovations to the course and clubhouse scheduled for between May and November 2014, when the course will be temporarily closed. The property is owned by the City of Scottsdale and managed by the PGA Tour.

Fluffier new white beach sand will fill all bunkers. Also planned: renovation of the players’ locker room and enclosing the outdoor patio dining area overlooking the 18th green.

— Dan Vukelich

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Fairmont and TPC Scottsdale: True Golf Value 0 4

Golfers are genetically disposed to shop for deals when they travel to warm-weather golf destinations, so this may sound counter-intuitive: Stop shopping and remember three words: TPC, Scottsdale and Fairmont – the single best golf value you’ll find this winter.

Hold on, you say. “He’s talking about a golf course that charges $299 for 18 holes like it’s a bargain. Is he on crack?” Allow me to explain ….

The Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, a sprawling AAA 5-diamond property, has standard hotel and private condo options, all of which qualify as “luxury” by any definition of the term.

For non-golfers, the resort has proximity to shopping and a luxury spa. For golfers, its golf concierge has a special relationship with the TPC (translation: clout to get a tee time) plus a free shuttle to and from the course.

For folks who like an added measure of exclusivity (and you know who you are) there’s the resort’s Fairmont Gold section, a group of 69 separate condos with private lounge, honor bar, hot continental breakfast, secure parking and what seems like a battalion of staff ready to do guests’ bidding.

The TPC golf experience is rock solid, unlike anything you’ll find in Arizona or in Florida. The forecaddies who run ahead and spot your ball are so good reading their greens that when they say two balls out, they mean two balls out, no more, no less.

And there’s the 16th hole on the Stadium Course, where you can get a sense of the Roman Coliseum drama during the Phoenix Waste Management Open of playing a tee shot inside a stadium bigger than most minor-league baseball parks.

The TPC’s practice facilities are as superb as the course conditions. If you’re on the range and hitting out of a divot, it’s because you just made that divot. And the clubhouse and on-course service is attentive but not intrusive.

Now, let’s talk about that $299 greens fee.

That’s the daily-fee rack rate. Only a cigar-chomping fat cat who just rolled up in a limo without a tee time pays that.

Instead, sign on for a TPC stay-play package that gets you two nights at the Princess, a round at the TPC Scottsdale Stadium Course, another round at the TPC Champions Course (no slouch of a course, by the way), forecaddie and range balls – all for $450, through April 30.

If you want to go “all-in” on the Fairmont/TPC experience, cough up $785 and get three nights at the Fairmont and one round each at the TPC Scottsdale Stadium Course, Troon North and Grayhawk – the Trifecta of modern-day Scottsdale golf – at a smokin’ price.

If you do the math, you’ll see that sometimes the ala carte discount option isn’t always the right play when the goal is scoring real golf value.

— Dan Vukelich

Win a Round in Scottsdale with Brandel Chamblee 0 6

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (Sept. 17, 2012) – For a limited time, visitors can write their own Rules for Scottsdale Golf and enter to win a trip to Scottsdale to play a round with Golf Channel Analyst and PGA TOUR Professional Brandel Chamblee.

The contest is part of a new golf marketing partnership between Chamblee and the Scottsdale Convention & Visitors Bureau.

“I’ve traveled and played golf in every corner of the world. Scottsdale is the best there is, hands down,” Chamblee said. “I’ve been telling people this for years and now I get to do it as the destination’s official golf ambassador. I work in Florida, but I choose to live in Scottsdale. What does that tell you?”

As a service to the throngs of golfers that visit Scottsdale every year, the Scottsdale CVB launched www.ilovescottsdalegolf.com, an easy-to-navigate site and one-stop-shop for all things golf in Scottsdale. Chamblee is featured prominently on the site, writing regular blog posts and touting “Brandel’s Rules for Scottsdale Golf.”

The tongue-in-cheek series highlights all of the fun to be had both on and off Scottsdale’s golf courses. It’s also where visitors can enter to win the trip to Scottsdale and view complete details and contest rules.

There are 51 golf courses within Scottsdale’s city limits and more than 200 in the surrounding area. Also available are 70 world-class resorts and spas, the magnificent Sonoran Desert, and an award-winning dining and nightlife scene.