Golf the Texas Hill Country in Austin This Winter
By Chris Duthie
With our beloved Broncos stumbling and Old Man Winter bearing down on local golf courses statewide, it’s high time to start planning a seasonal escape. Right now, the right place to go is Austin — and not just because the Texas Hill Country destination is basking in high-70s sunshine.
Why here? How about an amazing, 20-course attraction called the Austin Golf Trail that displays the celebrated design talents of Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw, Jack Nicklaus, Tom Fazio, Jay Morrish, Robert Trent Jones, Arthur Hills, Arnold Palmer and others. Top-ranked favorites include 72-hole Horseshoe Bay Resort, 72-hole Omni Barton Creek Resort & Spa, Wolfdancer Golf Club, Avery Ranch, Grey Rock and Star Ranch. And if you have a way in, go play private Austin Country Club, annual host to the PGA Tour’s Dell Technologies Match Play (March 21-25).
Equally splendid are Austin’s resort properties, like the Omni Barton Creek, which just initiated a resort-wide, $150 million renovation and expansion to mark the property’s 30th anniversary. More first-class pampering awaits at the Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort and Spa, which in addition to a heavily wooded Colorado River locale is renowned for its sumptuous Spa Django, 24-hour gym, Arthur Hills golf and the take-dead-aim Harvey Penick Golf Academy.
Austin is also regarded the “Live Music Capital of the World,” underscored by thousands of bands and performing artists who perform regularly at hundreds of live, boot-scootin’ venues like The Broken Spoke and The Continental Club. Even better, take in a show at the Austin City Limits Live at the Moody Theater, the peerless PBS television sound stage that regularly hosts stars like Tori Amos (Nov. 17), Willie Nelson (Dec. 29-31), Kool & the Gang (Jan. 26) and Pat Benatar (March 30).
More annual events and festivals are on tap, including Carnaval Brasileiro (Feb. 10), Austin Marathon (Feb. 18), SXSW Music and Film Festival (March 9-18), Rodeo Austin (March 10-24), Old Settler’s Music Festival (April 19-22), Austin Urban Music Festival (March 30-31) and the Austin Food + Wine Festival (late April).
For more information go online to AustinTexas.org. What are your favorite memories of Austin? Share your comments below.
Chris Duthie is a Durango-based contributor to Colorado AvidGolfer. Colorado AvidGolfer is the state’s leading resource for golf and the lifestyle that surrounds it, publishing eight issues annually and proudly delivering daily content via coloradoavidgolfer.com.