Shrouded by mountains on three sides and covered by a canopy of near-perpetual blue sky, Phoenix and its neighboring communities are home to more than 160 golf clubs that offer more than 185 different courses — including a variety of styles — and Greater Phoenix is recognized as one of the top destinations for golf.
From courses that occupy desert canyons to those that are part of opulent resort properties, golfers have a wide variety of styles and experiences to choose from.
Here are some tee-time tips for you your next golf trip:
Greater Phoenix's golfing roots are more than a century old. In 1910, nine holes were laid out on oiled dirt at the Ingleside Inn, located in the then-sleepy town of Scottsdale. Early courses were built near canals and irrigated by flooding them with canal water. These days, Scottsdale is home to the Waste Management Phoenix Open, which annually attracts more than 700,000 boisterous fans to TPC at Scottsdale, making it the best-attended event on the PGA Tour. Since taking over as title sponsor of the Phoenix Open, Waste Management has put an increased effort in reducing energy usage and increasing recycling, establishing the Phoenix Open as the “greenest” tournament on the PGA Tour.
In addition, many of Phoenix-area courses were designed by the greats, and most don’t have merely one signature hole, but many. TPC of Scottsdale's Stadium and Champions courses, designed by Tom Weiskopf and Jay Morrish, are open to everyone, not just the pros.
JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa, Arizona's largest hotel and convention complex, is home to Wildfire Golf Club and two picturesque 18-hole championship courses designed by two of golf's greatest legends: Arnold Palmer and Nick Faldo.
Boulders Resort & Spa, which earned "Best Golf Resort in Southwest" honors from Golf Digest, is home to two award-winning Jay Morrish-designed courses that stretch across an enchanting and rugged landscape that inspired the resort's name.
Some courses — such as Troon North and We-Ko-Pa golf clubs — occupy lush desert landscapes, where civilization feels a world away, while Raven Golf Club skips the saguaros and boasts more than 6,000 mature pine trees along its fairways.
For those looking for a stay that offers an on-site golf experience and a post-round spa treatment just steps away, Arizona Biltmore, A Waldorf Astoria Resort (pictured in header) is among those offering visitors convenient access between their resorts, golf club and spas.
Two other resort courses — Whirlwind Golf Club at the Sheraton Grand at Wild Horse Pass and Kierland Golf Club at the Westin Kierland Resort & Spa are the only courses in the world to provide golf carts equipped with air-conditioning devices that blow aromatherapy-infused air around golfers necks during summer rounds.
In 2018, The Phoenician Golf Club unveiled the course's 10-month redesign. Helmed by architect Phil Smith, this transformation turned what was previously 27-hole facility into a cohesive 18-hole golf course that offers unique landscapes including Arizona's only sand-island green as well as incredible views of Camelback Mountain and the Phoenix skyline.
Phoenix also boasts eight affordable municipal courses that accommodate a variety of skill levels. The city's Papago Course, recognized as one of the top municipal courses in the region, affords golfers views of beautiful red rock formations on every one of its 18 holes. And municipal courses aren't the only option for golfers looking for value in Phoenix: Surprisingly affordable tee times can be reserved during the summer, when top resort courses offer seasonal specials of $50 and less.
No matter which type of course you choose, rest assured that you can play it any time of year thanks to our famously sunny weather.