Golf casinos and more Why Vegas is perfect for a mancation

By Brandon TuckerFebruary 2, 2010, 1:26 am
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(Photo courtesy Warner Bros.)

LAS VEGAS – This is the place for a mancation.

The 2009 comedy smash 'The Hangover' showed how to party hard in Vegas.

And while drugs, kidnappings and ill-advised marriages might be pushing it for your group, rest assured, you can still have a good, ol' fashioned boys weekend in Las Vegas.

Every mancation should include a couple rounds of golf, so as to ensure you see the light of day for at least four hours.

We're here to offer mancation-friendly options, from golf to off-the-course action in Las Vegas.

Top mancation golf courses in Las Vegas

For more golf in Las Vegas, or to plan your next trip, visit
Mancationers want to spend as little time as possible away from the Las Vegas Strip. And there's golf nearby – both on Las Vegas Boulevard and close enough to allow for a cheap cab fare, sparing the rental-car expense.

Want to splurge? Look no further than Bali Hai Golf Club, next to Mandalay Bay on the Strip. Bali Hai, spectacularly conditioned and beautified with a few thousand palm trees, features and a signature island green. That's not to mention the wide fairways that even your group's duffer - and there's always one - might hit every few swings. If your group is flush, consider playing a round with one or more of the sexy Bali Hai Par Mates.

If you're staying on the north end of the Strip, downtown Las Vegas options are close. Desert Pines Golf Club boasts a wonderfully crafted and scenic, Carolina sandhills-style design with tight, rolling fairways lined with pine trees. And Desert Pines features a mountainous backdrop.

If you can't keep your driver in the fairway, though, or lack the self control to hit a few irons off the tee, head elsewhere. You can go old school and visit Las Vegas National Golf Club, a classic PGA Tour stop that hosted Tiger Woods' first PGA-Tour win in 1996. And Las Vegas National is a great value, especially if you book an afternoon or evening tee time.

If your group includes a mancationer who can't handle 18 holes of regulation golf and you don't trust him alone at the casino for four hours, play some par-3 golf. The Callaway Golf Center, just south of the casinos on the Strip, offers nine holes mof par-3 golf. It stays lighted until 11 p.m. in the summer, in case you sleep through that 4 p.m. wake-up call.

Top Las Vegas Strip steakhouses

Every mancation needs one great meal with a red-meat centerpiece, and steakhouses abound up and down the Strip. One of the newest on the scene, Brand at Monte Carlo, provides a bustling, open atmosphere, so you can keep an eye on the real meat market.

Michael Mina's Stripsteak at Mandalay Bay serves a variety of steak styles, from Kobe beef to butter-poached, bone-in top loin. So order a good bottle of red and kick off your night with some class.

Mancation-friendly casinos in Las Vegas

Some casinos keep mancationers seated at the tables with gorgeous, young, cleavage-heavy dealers.

One of the newest additions to the center of the Strip, Planet Hollywood employs some of the sexiest dealers. With go-go dancer pits that add to a mingling, high-energy atmosphere, you might not even feel the need to go to the club. And if you've already made an ass of yourself at the craps table and want to do it again, there's a karaoke bar right next to the Planet Hollywood casino.

The Hard Rock Casino Hotel has stayed hot enough to lure plenty of partygoers from the strip. The casino floor is hardly traditional by design. It's shaped more like a circular party pit with a bar in the center and a live stage just off the floor, so you barely feel like you're gambling. Go-go girls and sexy dealers help entice you back into the pits and shake it to pumping, hard-rock tunes.

Just about every casino has a poker room, but they vary. Downtown, the World Series of Poker began in Binion's enormous, 70-table room gave. It offers $2/$4 limit hold'em.

On the strip, the poker room at the MGM Grand sits right at the front of the casino, luring fish, as the sharks call them, for the taking.

If you're looking to play where the pros play or to put up some serious coin yourself, head to the Bellagio. The limits range from $4/$8 to as high as you want in Bobby's Room, where the stars often play.
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What's in the bag: CareerBuilder winner Rahm

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 22, 2018, 10:37 pm

Jon Rahm defeated Andrew Landry in a playoff to earn his second PGA Tour title at the CareerBuilder Challenge. Here's what's in his bag:

Driver: TaylorMade M4 (9.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

Fairway wood: TaylorMade M3 (19 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

Irons: TaylorMade P790 (3), P750 (4-PW), with Project X 6.5 shafts

Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (52, 56 degrees), Milled Grind Hi-Toe (60 degrees), with Project X 6.5 shafts

Putter: TaylorMade Spider Tour Red

Ball: TaylorMade TP5x

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Strange irked by Rahm-Landry friendly playoff

By Jason CrookJanuary 22, 2018, 9:45 pm

Curtis Strange knows a thing or two about winning golf tournaments, and based on his reaction to the CareerBuilder Challenge playoff on Sunday, it’s safe to say he did things a little differently while picking up 17 PGA Tour victories in his Hall-of-Fame career.

While Jon Rahm and Andrew Landry were “battling” through four extra holes, Strange, 62, tweeted his issues with the duo’s constant chit-chat and friendly banter down the stretch at La Quinta Country Club, where Rahm eventually came out on top.

The two-time U.S. Open champ then engaged with some followers to explain his point a little more in depth.

So, yeah ... don't think he's changing his perspective on this topic anytime soon ever.

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Randall's Rant: The Euros won't just roll over

By Randall MellJanuary 22, 2018, 9:36 pm

The Ryder Cup may not be the King Kong of golf events yet, but you can hear the biennial international team event thumping its chest a full eight months out.

As anticipation for this year’s big events goes, there is more buzz about Europe’s bid to hold off a rejuvenated American effort in Paris in September than there is about the Masters coming up in April.

Thank Europe’s phenomenal success last weekend for that.

And Rory McIlroy’s impassioned remarks in Abu Dhabi.

And the provocative bulletin board material a certain Sports Illustrated writer provided the Europeans a couple months ago, with a stinging assault on the Euro chances that read like an obituary.

McIlroy was asked in a news conference before his 2018 debut last week what he was most excited about this year.

The Ryder Cup topped his list.

Though McIlroy will be trying to complete the career Grand Slam at Augusta National come April, he talked more about the Ryder Cup than he did any of the game’s major championships.

When asked a follow-up about the American team’s resurgence after a task-force overhaul and the injection of young, new star power, McIlroy nearly started breaking down the matchup. He talked about the young Americans and how good they are.

“Yeah, the Americans have been, obviously, very buoyant about their chances and whatever, but it’s never as easy as that. ... The Ryder Cup’s always close,” McIlroy said. “I think we’ll have a great team, and it definitely won’t be as easy as they think it’s going to be.”

McIlroy may have been talking about Alan Shipnuck’s bold prediction after the American Presidents Cup rout last fall.

Or similar assertions from TV analysts.

“The Ryder Cup is dead – you just don’t know it yet,” Shipnuck wrote. “One of the greatest events in sport is on the verge of irrelevancy. The young, talented, hungry golfers from the United States, benefitting from the cohesive leadership of the Task Force era, are going to roll to victory in 2018 in Paris.”

European Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn won’t find words that will motivate the Euros more than that as he watches his prospective players jockey to make the team.

And, boy, did they jockey last weekend.

The Euros dominated across the planet, not that they did it with the Ryder Cup as some rallying cry, because they didn’t. But it was a heck of an encouraging start to the year for Bjorn to witness.

Spain’s Jon Rahm won the CareerBuilder Challenge on the PGA Tour, England’s Tommy Fleetwood started the week at Abu Dhabi paired with American and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and won the European Tour event, and Spain’s Sergio Garcia won the Singapore Open in a rout on the Asian Tour.

And McIlroy looked close to being in midseason form, tying for third in his first start in three months.

Yes, it’s only January, and the Ryder Cup is still a long way off, with so much still to unfold, but you got an early sense from McIlroy how much defending European turf will mean to him and the Euros in Paris in September.

The Masters is great theater, the U.S. Open a rigorous test, The Open and the PGA Championship historically important, too, but the Ryder Cup touches a nerve none of those do.

The Ryder Cup stokes more fervor, provokes more passion and incites more vitriol than any other event in golf.

More bulletin board material, too.

Yeah, it’s a long way off, but you can already hear the Ryder Cup’s King Kong like footsteps in its distant approach. Watching how the American and European teams come together will be an ongoing drama through spring and summer.

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Quail Hollow officials promise players easier conditions

By Rex HoggardJanuary 22, 2018, 9:14 pm

Quail Hollow Club - a staple on the PGA Tour since 2003 - debuted as a longer, tougher version of itself at last year’s PGA Championship, receiving mixed reviews from players.

The course played to a lengthened 7,600 yards at last year’s PGA and a 73.46 stroke average, the toughest course in relation to par on Tour in 2017. As a result, it left some players less than excited to return to the Charlotte, N.C.-area layout later this spring for the Wells Fargo Championship.

It’s that lack of enthusiasm that led officials at Quail Hollow to send a video to players saying, essentially, that the course players have lauded for years will be back in May.

The video, which includes Quail Hollow president Johnny Harris and runs nearly five minutes, begins with an explanation of how the first hole, which played as a 524-yard par 4 at the PGA, will play much shorter at the Wells Fargo Championship.

“I had a number of my friends who were playing in the tournament tell me that tee was better suited as a lemonade stand,” Harris joked of the new tee box on the fourth hole. “I doubt we’ll ever see that tee used again in competition.”

Harris also explained that the greens, which became too fast for some, will be “softer” for this year’s Wells Fargo Championship.