Shanty Creek expands summer experience at year-round destination

Shanty Creek expands summer experience at year-round destination

Text: Brenna Buckwald

Shanty Creek Resort, a four-season golf and ski resort in Bellaire, Michigan, prepares for this summer’s golf season with the addition of new onsite accommodations, planned events, and the acquisition of a fifth golf course, Hawk’s Eye Golf Course, to add to their portfolio of onsite courses. 

The resort is a true golfer’s haven with Hawk’s Eye added to their portfolio, as Shanty Creek Resort now features 90 holes of championship-level golf spanning five courses within its nearly 6,000-acre property. Travel-time to any of the resort’s golf courses is less than five minutes, something not a lot of golf resorts in the area can claim. 

“Having five courses within an eight-mile radius adds significant appeal and prestige for golfers looking for a world-class getaway,” said Mike Mooney, PGA Professional, director of golf and club for Shanty Creek. 

Shanty Creek’s catalog of courses now includes Cedar River Golf Course, The Legend Golf Course, Schuss Mountain Golf Course, Summit Golf Course, and Hawk’s Eye. 

Since its opening in 2004, the Hawk’s Eye golf course has been awarded with positive rankings and accolades such as being listed as one of Golf Advisor’s “Top Courses in Michigan” three times and named as one of Michigan’s “Best Public Courses” by Golf Magazine

“Obviously, the last year has been challenging for everyone, and we just find it is a testament to our ownership’s commitment to expanding Shanty Creek’s footprint, and just a testament to our successes,” said Lindsey Southwell, marketing director at Shanty Creek Resort.

“Our owners believe that this is the time to really capitalize on things and make an impression that we’re serious about golf and we think we do golf well, and that you should come and golf at one of the biggest golf resorts in this part of the country,” Southwell added. 

Cedar River, Shanty Creek Resort, Photo by Brian Walters

In the past year, the resort has been making unique additions to their onsite experience that cultivates a vacation fit for all members of the family—even those that are not golfers themselves. 

Topgolf Swing Suite, the immersive social experience available in The River Bistro located in Shanty Creek’s Cedar River Village, offers a comfortable lounge experience with a massive screen for small groups to enjoy virtual games, such as a golf simulation, as well as games that are fun for the whole family, like zombie dodgeball. 

Recently, the resort has also added the CoffeeBAR to the Great Room of The Lakeview Hotel lobby. The modern coffee house serves an assortment of Starbucks coffee drinks, as well as fresh house-made breakfast sandwiches, pastries, and lunch items for guests to enjoy.

Looking ahead, Southwell noted that many of the resort’s popular summer events will still be happening this summer, but they will be modified as they were last summer to encourage social distancing. On July 3rd, Shanty Creek hosts a Fourth of July celebration with music, food trucks, games, and fireworks. This year, the event is being held as a firework display for families to watch. 

At the end of August, Shanty Creek also has plans to hold their annual two-day spectator event, Balloons Over Bellaire. For this event, approximately 15-to-20 hot air balloons are lined up behind Lakeview Hotel, which sits at the top of a ski slope and overlooks the lake. The balloons are launched at the same time from the alpine tubing hill around 6:30 p.m., creating a glowing presentation in the night sky, reflected on the lake below—a sight that grants the event popularity amongst the resort’s guests. 

“Last year when things opened back up, it was extremely busy. The momentum never left the entire season until the day we closed. Based on early booking, tee sheets, and looking at rounds comparative to last year and the year previous, we believe this year to be more of the same,” Southwell said. 

“We have found that people find golf to be something that they can do safely, and enjoy it with either their family or friends, and so everyone is really looking for that experience,” Southwell added. 

Featured image Shanty Creek Resort, Photo by Brian Walters