Several golfing destinations in the region partner to deliver a stay-and-play package with variety and quality.
By Greg Johnson
Jeffrey O’Malley, golf professional and PGA director of golf at Pilgrim’s Run Golf Club in Pierson, Michigan said golfers want variety, quantity, and quality when they come to a specific area of the state for golf.
“That’s why we work with other golf courses, especially in the Grand Rapids area, where so many people visit, because of what the city has become for tourism in the state,” O’Malley said.
With this in mind, O’Malley helped developed stay-and-play packages with The Golf Club at Thornapple Pointe, Mines Golf Course, and Boulder Creek Golf Club in the greater Grand Rapids area.
“It’s quite a foursome, and the lodging is within 30 minutes of all four places with us being the 30-minute trip,” O’Malley said.
The two-day, one-night package features 36 holes on two courses starting at $180 per person, and there are two other options for longer or shorter stays. The lodging point for the promoted package is the Country Inn & Suites East Hotel, located at the junction of Interstate 96, Interstate 196, and the East Beltline. The hotel has amenities such as a breakfast buffet and is in close proximity to The Gravity Taphouse Grille, which seemingly was designed with golfers in mind with its part-sports-bar, and part-casual-dining setting with great food.
Pilgrim’s Run is the only real drive in the group, but worth all 25-rather-easy-going-northern-miles on U.S. Route 131 to Pierson. The green complexes were designed by Mike DeVries of Traverse City, and they are the most difficult part of the course that will challenge, and yet please at the same time. The flowing course, always in great shape and always welcoming, transports players away from it all in a northern Michigan type setting, only without the far north drive.
DeVries also designed at the Mines, which has an interesting story as it was built on the top of old gypsum mines. It is a great public access golf course with competitive pricing and some outstanding design elements. It is also just a short 11-minute-drive from the Country Inn & Suites.
Thornapple Pointe is visible on the left from I-96 as drivers head West from Lansing into Grand Rapids approaching the Michigan Highway 6, or M-6, exit. It is a course with great conditioning, a fun design by Bill Newcomb, and there is more room than meets the eye on the great holes along the Thornapple River, just a roughly 14-minute-drive from the Country Inn & Suites.
Players can also look to Boulder Creek, which has been a local favorite for several years. It is on the busy North side, but gives a city-edge feel with a great mix of sweeping golf holes across rolling hills. The course is about a 13-minute-drive from the lodging accommodation included in the package.
For scheduling the golf and hotel package contact O’Malley.