Harrah's Golf

CascataIn a city famous for its high rise hotels and casinos, Las Vegas has increasingly become a true golf destination with a portfolio of courses aimed at giving an experience unlike anything “back home.” Vegas is known for doing it bigger and better than anyone else, and arguably nobody does golf better here than Harrah’s Entertainment.

Harrah’s is the largest gaming company in the world. They own/operate Strip casinos and hotels for every type of customer: for the decadence-at-any-cost crowd - Caesars Palace, Paris, and The Rio; and for those with slightly understated tastes, Bally’s, Flamingo or Harrah’s Las Vegas are wonderful options.

For golf aficionados who appreciate challenging designs, pristine conditions and an overall customer service first approach, then Harrah’s is the only choice, proudly presenting Cascata and Rio Secco Golf Club as well as the best golf instructor in the world, Butch Harmon.

Cascata

If the hustle and bustle of the Strip ever becomes too much, then head to Cascata, a tranquil respite for vacationers and avid golfers alike. Set 3,200 feet above the desert basin, Cascata (Italian for waterfall) is 30 minutes from downtown Las Vegas but truly a world away.

The 37,000-square-foot, Tuscan-style clubhouse flushed with imported tile and natural wood trim greets those lucky enough to enter the gates. The full service restaurant serves American delectables, the wine and cigar room has first class selections for the connoisseur while the golf shop carries the latest in equipment and apparel. And yes, there really is a waterfall towering 418 feet above the practice range that tumbles down, traverses through the practice areas and winds right through the clubhouse atrium. Talk about a first impression!

The lushness of the 7,100-yard Rees Jones design is apparent immediately with yet another waterfall guarding the left side of the uphill, first hole. Dramatic vistas and challenging tee shots begin with the downhill par-5 third. At Cascata, no two holes are alike and each is memorable in their own right. Especially noteworthy are; the downhill par-3 seventh hole with a waterfall dropping in towards the green’s left; the 14th, a long dogleg right with a creek and pond coming into play; and the course’s signature 18th hole. The longer hitter can take this double dogleg par 5 over the hill to the left, however the safer bet is to choose the fairway on the right and play it as a three-shot hole.

Cascata

With the manner in which Jones carved Cascata into the natural desert landscape, there are no two holes in proximity to each other. This allows you to feel like you’re on the course alone and the quiet solitude you experience is almost deafening. Cascata has five separate creeks and waterfalls along with four ponds. Bighorn sheep and roadrunners are among the desert wildlife that pervade the property. From impeccable course conditions, superb customer service, a tour caliber fore caddie and a tranquil course setting unlike any other, Cascata is the ultimate natural golf experience.

While the property at Cascata will astound even the well-traveled golfer, the service is what sets the experience apart.

Only guests with a reservation will get through the main gate. Upon arrival you are greeted by a personable player service representative who will handle your bags and coordinate transportation, a golf professional meets you at the steps officially welcoming you to the facility, you will be guided to the award-winning locker room where a personalized locker plate awaits you, and moments after settling into the locker room, your golf shoes will be brought to you after a fresh buff at the shoe polisher. Now that is service.

Cascata is the ultimate destination for groups, tournaments and outings with such large events as the Wendy’s 3-Tour Challenge, Michael Douglas & Friends Celebrity Classic, Butch Harmon Vegas Tour Championship and Tiger Jam hosted by Tiger Woods having made their home at Cascata.

Coined “Golf’s Hidden Treasure” by Sports Illustrated and the “Eighth Wonder Of The Golf World” by Jones, Cascata is perpetually a nationally-ranked golf property by Golf Digest, Golfweek, and Golf Magazine.

Rio Secco

Rio SeccoRio Secco, also a Rees Jones design, is a challenging 18-hole layout built to test even the best players’ games, and awestruck golfers of all skill levels with astounding beauty throughout. Panoramic views of the Las Vegas cityscape and the gorgeous estates that sit high atop several of the holes at Rio Secco will provide a welcome distraction when the ball isn’t dropping.

Stretched to 7,332 yards from the black tees, Rio Secco was crafted out of the natural contours of the desert landscape with six holes traversing tight ridge-lined canyons, six on perched plateaus, and six others in broad desert wash.

The round starts off leisurely with the short par-4 first hole playing towards the city, but the daunting 489-yard par-4 second hole will quickly get your attention. The rest of the front nine will test your game with all shots in the bag, leading to the tighter and demanding back nine. Arguably the best six-hole stretch anywhere culminates with the signature 16th hole. A good tee shot on this longish par 4 will leave a second shot to a green cut into the side of a cliff. It is among the most breathtaking holes you will ever play. The course record is 64 shared by Woods, PGA TOUR pro Nick Watney and John Passmore, a Butch Harmon Vegas Tour player.

To help you navigate one of Vegas’ toughest courses, guests can reserve a T-Mate caddie for the round. A T-Mate is everything that a traditional caddy is and more. They are young, attractive ladies who undoubtedly will make the round more enjoyable and fun. But prior to a T-Mate becoming available to the general public, she must complete a rigorous training program including golf history, both the well known and little known facts of the game, golf etiquette and important course strategies unique to Rio Secco.

Rio Secco GC, Hole #11

Again, T-Mates are as good if not better than the caddie at your club, only they look a whole lot better. Here’s a tip… make your reservations well in advance, because T-Mates are only available on a first come first serve basis and routinely sell out.

With a location 20 minutes from the Las Vegas Strip, Rio Secco is a fabulous venue for groups ranging from the smallest outings to the largest most complex tournaments. Their professional staff will guide you through the event experience from proposal stage, custom scorecards and signage for maximum sponsorship opportunities, through to a superb setting for the awards and scoring party. With years of experience and a commitment to tailor the event to your needs, Rio Secco delivers unlike any other.

Rio Secco Golf Club opened in 1997 and immediately drew national attention and garnered its share of national awards, including Top 10 New Courses by Golf Digest and Top 100 Resort Courses by Golfweek in 2007.

The Butch Harmon School of Golf

Butch HarmonButch Harmon, current swing doctor to pros Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els, Watney, Stewart Cink, Adam Scott and Natalie Gulbis, has his golf school on property at Rio Secco just 330 yards off the back side of the practice range (or a mere 3-wood away for Woods as he exhibited in 2005 during the Tiger Jam clinic).

Harmon has the distinction of being the only golf instructor to lead two different players to number one in the world (Greg Norman and Woods). Widely considered the world’s best instructor among touring professionals on all major tours, Harmon has held Golf Digest’s number one ranking for nine consecutive years.

Being born into the first family of American golf (father Claude won the 1948 Masters) and growing up around the game’s greats (frequent visitors to the Harmon household were Ben Hogan, Gene Sarazen, Byron Nelson and Sam Snead) has given Butch an experienced perspective on the game and an unparalleled eye for the fundamentals of the swing.

While the average golfer may not have direct one-on-one access to Butch, golfers who attend a Butch Harmon School will have an opportunity for a tip and instruction from the “pro’s pro.” The Harmon School has a variety of school packages: one day corporate schools exclusive to one group or company two or three day packages with Butch or just with his expertly trained staff of instructors (check the PGA Tour schedule as Butch is generally out of town during the major worldwide tournaments).

All packages at the Butch Harmon School of Golf include hotel accommodations, ground transportation, expert instruction in all areas of the game, video analysis, playing lessons (at Rio Secco or Cascata, or both) and lunch each day of the school. If the Harmon School is good enough for the touring professionals, then it should be good enough for you.

 

 

 

Please Share