Bonding with a billionaire: My time golfing in Kohler
Just back from a four-day foray to Destination Kohler–the Five-Diamond Mega-Resort and Spa that has made the unlikely blue-collar outpost of Sheboygan, Wisconsin one of the most sought-after destinations in golf.
The trip began with a bang—a one-hour face-to-face with the Billionaire owner, the Grand Poobah of Plumbing himself—Herb Kohler. Our chat was illuminating, as he was providing some excellent insight into the subject of my next book - the great golf course architect Pete Dye. But the conversation, no matter how stimulating, was an absolute yawner in comparison to the opportunity to play the quartet of stunningly beautiful courses, all designed by Dye, that have burnished Kohler’s worldwide reputation in golf.
Although the resort was built for and caters to the resort golfer, it’s where champions are made. The original Blackwolf Run course played host to the ‘98 U.S. Women’s Open, won by Se Ri Pak. It will host the same championship again in 2012. On the banks of Lake Michigan, the dazzling Whistling Straits course played host to the ‘04 PGA Championship (won by Vijay Singh) this past summer’s U.S. Senior Open, (won by Brad Bryant) and will host the PGA Championship in 2010, 2015, and the ultimate accolade - the 2020 Ryder Cup. Meanwhile, the other two golf courses, Meadow Valleys and the Irish, are no slouches themselves.
In this Vagabond Golfer’s opinion, Destination Kohler is undoubtedly on a very, very short list, with Kiawah Island, Pebble Beach, Pinehurst, and Bandon Dunes, as one of the top 5 destination golf resorts in the nation.
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Dam good kissers!
Yes--I saw the hidden tee and dormant fairway---superb stuff!
To Jumbo Melody:
Insiders know that the sheep with bells on are "taken" by the farmers of the area...the rest of the flock is still single.
Yes--the Dye Book in progress promises to be a magnum opus. But in the meantime, my latest book, titled "A hacker's Humiliations," is brand-new this month. Please visit www.vagabondgolfer.com for more information, or just shoot me an email
Something to be aware of, however minor a problem, is that walking is mandatory on the Straits Course. The terrain off-fairway of the Straits can be very inhospitable with steep slopes and clumpy knee-high fescue. The footpaths from geen to tee can be a little tricky in spots too. The Irish course has very similar ground, and while walking is recommended it is not mandatory (cart paths are hidden, so not much of a break there). Two of my party are ex-jocks whose injuries have made walking 18 a chore under normal circumstances . In their opinion these courses are definitely a harder walk than normal.
over in sheboygan you were too close for comfort.
we await your second visit to minnesota.
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