From exquisite championship courses designed by legends of the sport to lush fairways and breathtaking views - there are more than 50 golf courses available for play in Las Vegas throughout the year thanks to the area's inviting climate. Las Vegas offers challenging, yet beautifully sculpted courses developed by world-renowned designers including Jack Nicklaus, Tom Weiskopf, Billy Casper, Arnold Palmer and Pete Dye.
Many of the world's most famous professional and amateur golfers, including Tiger Woods, former U.S. President Bill Clinton and NBA legend Michael Jordan, feel at home on the Las Vegas links.
Las Vegas hosts many nationally and internationally televised golf tournaments including the PGA Tour's Shriner's Hospitals for Children Open, LPGA Takefuji Classic, Michael Jordan Invitational and Wendy's Three-Tour Challenge.
In 2009, the Las Vegas Golf Hall of Fame unveiled a museum-quality exhibit featuring classic photos and memorabilia from such Las Vegas golf champions as Jim Colbert, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Annika Sorenstam and many others at its new home, the clubhouse at Las Vegas National Golf Club. A 16-person committee made up of Las Vegas golf professionals, media, amateur association leaders, and Hall of Fame members, oversees the voting process. The annual induction ceremony takes place during the week of the PGA Tour's Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. A special new exhibit commemorating the Las Vegas Founders Club's many contributions to golf in Las Vegas was unveiled in 2010. The exhibit features the actual trophies used for 25 years for the PGA Tour's Las Vegas Invitational plus other memorabilia from the LPGA Tour, PGA Tour and Tour of Champions events played in Las Vegas and organized by the Las Vegas Founders Club.
For golfers needing additional instruction, several golf schools are available. Walters Golf Academy offers lessons by Mike Davis, the only instructor in the country to be accredited as both a PGA Certified Professional and a PGA Master Professional. Private lessons are available at Bali Hai Golf Club or Royal Links Golf Club.
At the Butch Harmon School of Golf at the Rio Secco Golf Club, golfers experience state-of-the-art computer equipment to help analyze their unique swing. Special packages include private instruction, hotel accommodations and transportation to and from the course.
Chris Eastman at The Revere Golf Club at Anthem in Henderson, Nev., teaches the basic fundamentals. Eastman has taught golf for more than 17 years and even taught six professionals at various times.
- Las Vegas's first golf course opened in 1938 with the Las Vegas Golf Club, located near downtown Las Vegas
- Southern Nevada is home to more than 50 public or semi-private golf courses and a dozen private courses.
- There areseveral courses available in the outlying areas of Southern Nevada, including Mesquite, Laughlin and Primm.
- The Las Vegas Paiute Resort is the first master-planned, multi-course resort to be built on Native American land in the United States.
- Professional Golfer Tiger Woods earned his first PGA Tour victory in 1996 at the Las Vegas Invitational (now theShriners Hospitals for Children Open) at the Tournament Players Club at Summerlin.
- Designers with two or more golf courses in Southern Nevada include Billy Casper, Greg Nash, Arnold Palmer, Lee Schmidt, Brian Curley, Tom Fazio, Jack Nicklaus, Ted Robinson, Rees Jones, Pete Dye, Jay Morrish and Robert Trent Jones, Jr.
- Las Vegas has hosted stops on some of the world's major tours including the LPGA, Seniors Tour, PGA Tour and NCAA Championships.
- Chip Beck shot the second-ever 59 in 1991 at the Las Vegas Invitational at Sunrise Golf Club
- Jonathan Byrd shot the first ever walk-off hole-in-one playoff victory at the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in 2010
Here's a snapshot of just a few of the area's notable golf courses:
- Badlands Golf Club: Designed by Johnny Miller and Chi Chi Rodriguez, Badlands was Las Vegas' first public 27-hole facility and was named as one of Nevada's Top 10 golf courses by Golf Digest Magazine.
- Bali Hai Golf Club: Located at the southern end of the Las Vegas Strip, Bali Hai delivers an island feel with towering palm trees and sparkling green fairways accented by white crushed granite.
- Bear's Best: Designed by golf legend Jack Nicklaus, Bear's Best offers 18 replicas of Nicklaus' finest holes currently found at courses from Montana to Mexico. Bear's Best Las Vegas is home to a clubhouse that features Jack's Place, where photos, plaques and other memorabilia from Nicklaus' legendary career are displayed.
- Las Vegas National Golf Club: Located less than two miles from the Las Vegas Strip, Las Vegas National Golf Club is one of the most historic golf courses in Las Vegas. Las Vegas National Golf Club is past host of the PGA Tour's Tournament of Champions, Sahara Invitational and Las Vegas Invitational, in addition to the LPGA Tour's LPGA Championship. Las Vegas National Golf Club was one of three Las Vegas golf courses used during the 1996 Las Vegas Invitational when Tiger Woods won his first PGA Tour title.
- Legacy Golf Club: The Arthur Hills-designed facility features tee boxes on the 10th hole that are in the shape of each suit in a deck of cards: spades, clubs, diamonds and hearts.
- JW Marriott: Located in the heart of Southern Nevada's most prestigious golf neighborhoods, JW Marriott guests have access to a wide variety of golf facilities including an exclusive partnership with TPC Las Vegas. The 18-hole course incorporates a natural desert surrounding with a challenging layout to achieve one of the most enjoyable golf experiences in the western United States.
- Wynn Las Vegas: Experience 18 holes of world-class golf right on the Strip, where 11 of the holes include a water element. Designed by Tom Fazio and Steve Wynn, more than 800,000 cubic yards of earth were moved to create the dramatic elevation changes.
For additional information, go to www.LasVegas.com.