We know, your invitation to play Riviera Country Club is in the mail. But until then, you may be interested in where to play top public golf around SoCal.
So we've uncovered the Top 10 golf courses as rated by GolfNow users between Los Angeles and Palm Springs, which also includes Orange County and the Inland Empire. The majority of these ratings come from players who are verified purchasers through GolfNow. Their reviews reflect how the experience stacked up to the amount of cash they paid to play that day. So it's the ultimate bang-for-buck rating system.
Ironically enough, two plays in the GolfNow Top 10, Classic Club and the Stadium Course at PGA West, are courses the PGA Tour ditched due to player complaints; it just goes to show the pros are playing a different game than the rest of us.
The GolfNow Local Leaderboard: Top 10 Golf Courses between Los Angeles and Palm Springs
1. Classic Club, Palm Springs (4.71/5.0) -- Someone go tell Phil Mickelson, who lamented wind conditions here during the 2007, that Classic Club checks in as the best user-rated golf course in the area and of the 27 comments, none complain about any breeze. It doesn't surprise me one bit that Troon Golf-managed Classic Club is a regular golfer's favorite (it's a course I've lobbied for Top 100 inclusion in the past). In a destination where desert golf rules, Classic Club feels like a layout out of the Midwest with a wealth of green grass, pine trees and ponds.
2. Cross Creek Golf Club, Inland Empire (4.58/5.0) -- A mix of Temecula Valley tranquility and scenery to go with top conditioning levels make this Inland Empire facility a real player favorite. Better yet, tee times can often be found for under $50.
3. Moorpark Country Club, Los Angeles (4.56/5.0) -- A 27-hole semi-private facility that opened in 2002, golfers appreciate member-worthy service and conditions to go with a scenic layout with views of the Channel Islands.
'Fun, hilly golf course overseen by a friendly, professional and courteous staff,' wrote Ted Simendinger, a 13-handicap from Denver in his review of Moorpark. 'Also appreciated the little touches...chalking of the cups made them stand out.'
4. Sierra Lakes Golf Course, Inland Empire (4.56/5.0) -- Though some warn the wind can pick up at this foothills location, almost every golfer here lauds Sierra Lakes' great conditions and wide fairways.
5. Ojai Valley Inn & Spa, Los Angeles (4.53/5.0) -- This quaint stay-and-play escape northwest of Los Angeles offers tee times to outside guests as well at this 1920s-era design laid out by George Thomas (of Riviera fame) and William P. Bell.
6. Oak Quarry Golf Club, Inland Empire (4.51/5.0) -- Set in an old rock quarry, golfers love the unique setting to go along with a well thought out design by the team of Schmidt-Curley.
7. PGA West, Stadium Course, Palm Springs (4.5/5.0) -- If you needed further evidence that golfers are masochists, just look at ratings by Regular Joes for the Stadium Course, deemed too difficult for the PGA Tour (the Bob Hope Classic was staged just once in 1987 before the pros raised the white flag).
8. ShadowRidge Golf Resort, Palm Springs, (4.49/5.0) -- A top-end Palm Springs resort experience operated by Marriott, ShadowRidge, a Nick Faldo design, warrants high praise from those out for a Coachella Valley splurge.
9. SilverRock Resort, Palm Springs (4.47/5.0) -- One of the most oft-rated golf courses in all of the state, both hotel guests and locals are flocking to -- and raving about -- this La Quinta resort for championship-caliber golf and high-roller conditions.
10. Indian Wells Golf Resort, Palm Springs (4.45/5.0) -- It's pretty tough to look at your own, homely muni once you've spent the day at the City of Indian Wells-owned Indian Wells Golf Resort. The facility features a sleek clubhouse plus 36 beautifully conditioned holes that would make many private clubs jealous.
Ratings based on reviews filed by GolfNow users between 9/20/12-2/1/13. Minimum ten reviews needed. 116 courses were eligible for this Top 10.