Ten great Houston golf courses for business travelers

By Travel ArticlesJuly 10, 2012, 8:16 pm

HOUSTON -- Take a business course at these Houston golf locales.

Golf and business meetings have gone together since the dawn of the game. Some golf facilities, however, are more conducive to doing business than others.

Basic requirements include a well conditioned and well designed golf course, hospitable clubhouse, good eats and spirits and a welcoming atmosphere. Throw in a good location and you've got the perfect recipe for winning over clients or taking the staff out for a team building exercise.

Fortunately for Houstonians and those visiting the Bayou City, there are an abundance of such venues. Here, then, are 10 public facilities that make doing business on the golf course easy work and hopefully, profitable:

Augusta Pines Golf Club in Spring

As the name would imply, Augusta Pines Golf Club is sort of a combination of Augusta National and Pinehurst, at least in terms of topography and design of the course and in the massive 100,000-square-foot clubhouse. This Colonial style building houses a huge dining room and bar as well its golf shop. The course has tall pines, 30 acres of lakes and plenty of doglegs, rolling fairways and quick greens. Augusta Pines is also home to the Massengale Golf Academy, which offers one of only a handful Ping nFlight Fitting Centers in the world.

BlackHorse Golf Club in Cypress

Designed by Jim Hardy and Peter Jacobson, this Redstone Golf property offers outstanding conditioning and design over 36 holes, perfect for a corporate event or client outing. With a golf academy on site, it's also ideal for group clinics. The clubhouse at BlackHorse Golf Club features a terrific bar and grill, with outside seating overlooking the golf course. And speaking of the course, your guests will be particularly impressed with the back nine of BlackHorse's South Course, which runs through an old sand quarry. Plenty of wetlands, lakes and firm, fast greens are the norm for this northwest gem.

Houston National Golf Club

There are 36 holes at Houston National Golf Club, but only 18 are open to the public. Still, daily guests can enjoy a true private club atmosphere and a fun and challenging 7,400-yard layout by the late Robert von Hagge. The clubhouse offers two dining venues, a more upscale bar and grill located inside the clubhouse and an indoor/outdoor pavilion by the practice range. The latter is set up as a sports bar with plenty of big screens to watch football, baseball or PGA Tour action.

Meadowbrook Farms Golf Club in Katy

Truly one of Greg Norman's best designs, Meadowbrook Farms Golf Club is always in good shape and has that exclusive country club feel. In fact, there's been talk for years that Meadowbrook Farms would go fully private, but a weak economy has put those plans on hold indefinitely. The clubhouse has all the amenities of a private club, including excellent dining, locker room facilities and a great selection of apparel and hard goods in the golf shop.

Memorial Park Golf Course

While Memorial Park Golf Course is a busy municipal, this former home of the Houston Open is also full of history and tradition. Most of all, this 1924 John Bredemus design is located right in the heart of Houston. Business people love to come here at lunch or after work to hit balls or work on their short games. It's also a great place for lunch with Beck's Prime Restaurant handling the food and beverage for the facility.

Redstone Golf Club in Humble

Home of the Shell Houston Open, the Tournament Course at Redstone Golf Club is open to the public. It's also the most expensive daily-fee course in town and for good reason -- no detail is too small. Business associates will be impressed with the flawless conditioning, especially in the winter, spring and late fall, forecaddies and the best practice facilities in Houston, if not the state. It's also great for corporate clinics, a session at the TaylorMade Fitting Lab or lunch at the clubhouse. And your guests will love the challenge of these tour-quality holes, designed by Rees Jones.

Sienna Plantation Golf Club in Missouri City

One of the more upscale daily-fee courses in Ft. Bend County, Sienna Plantation Golf Club has a true country club atmosphere with its Colonial-style clubhouse, fine dining and well stocked golf shop. The course will also impress your guests. Designed by Arthur Hills and Mike Dasher, this 7,200-yard layout has five sets of tees, excellent conditioning and plenty of doglegs, mature oaks, elm trees and several lakes and streams.

Timber Creek Golf Club in Friendswood

One of the late Jay Riviere's best designs, Timber Creek Golf Club has become a favorite among south Houston golfers for its conditioning, pace of play on three nines (the Creekside, Pines and Timber Trails) and terrific customer service. The course looks anything but Houston (i.e., it's not flat) as more than 1 million cubic yards of earth were moved to create plenty of undulation in the fairways and greens. Add to that a 65,000-square-foot clubhouse, locker room facilities with showers and a large lounge and open-air pavilion, and you've got the perfect environment to strike a business deal.

Tour 18 Golf Club in Humble

What better place to loosen up your clients than Tour 18 Golf Club, the original tribute golf course that opened in 1992. Featuring what the original owners deemed the best 18 holes in America, you can play Augusta's Amen Corner, the island green 17th from the TPC Sawgrass Players Stadium Course and the Blue Monster 18th of Doral, just for starters. Plus, the large clubhouse has a well-stocked golf shop and relaxing bar and grill with some of the friendliest help around.

Wildcat Golf Club

What business client wouldn't be impressed by playing at the preferred golf club of Houston's professional sports teams? Wildcat Golf Club, a 36-hole facility designed by Caribbean architect Roy Case, is located just south of Reliant Stadium. In fact, views of the stadium are prominent as you play the links-style Highlands Course, and inside the facilities clubhouse is plenty of memorabilia from the Houston Rockets, Astros, Texans and Dynamo. Wildcat offers better than average dining, and it's also home to the Wildcat Golf Academy, which offers plenty of group lessons, ideal for corporate team building.

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Paisley (61) leads Web.com Tour Championship

By Associated PressSeptember 20, 2018, 11:56 pm

ATLANTIC BEACH, Fla. – Chris Paisley birdied four of the last five holes for a 10-under 61 and the first-round lead Thursday in the season-ending Web.com Tour Championship.

The South African Open winner in January for his first European Tour title, Paisley played the back nine first at Atlantic Beach Country Club, holing a bunker shot for an eagle on the par-5 18th. On the front nine, he birdied the par-3 fifth and finished with three straight birdies.

''I think just all around was really good,'' Paisley said. ''I hit it well off the tee, which gave me a lot of kind of short irons into the greens and opportunities. I hit a lot of really good iron shots close, and then a few other bonus kind of things happened where I holed the bunker shot on 18 and holed a long putt on No. 8.''

The 32-year-old Englishman missed the cuts in the first three Web.com Tour Finals events after getting into the series as a non-member PGA Tour with enough money to have placed in the top 200 in the FedEx Cup. The final card went for $40,625 last year, with Paisley needs to finish in a two-way tie for fourth or better to mathematically have a chance to secure one of the 25 PGA Tour at stake.

Full-field scores from the Web.com Tour Championship

''The nice thing was I won early in the year in Europe,'' said Paisley, a former University of Tennessee player. ''I've got the first two Final series events locked up, I think I'm in those. I'm not guaranteed to be in Dubai yet. But I just thought we have a house over here, my wife's American, my goal is to try to get on the PGA Tour, so it was a perfect opportunity to try and do it.''

Cameron Tringale and Canadian Ben Silverman were two strokes back at 63. Tringale is tied for 83rd in the PGA Tour card race with $2,660, and Silverman is tied for 85th at $2,600.

''I hit a lot of good shots and made some good putts,'' Silverman said. ''Actually, it could have been lower, but I'm not complaining. Missed a couple putts inside 6x feet, but I'm not complaining at all, it was a great round.''

Lucas Glover was at 64 with Ben Crane, Nicholas Lindheim, Matt Every, Trevor Cone, Denny McCarthy, Carlos Ortiz and Jose de Jesus Rodriguez. Carlos Ortiz and Jose de Jesus Rodriguez earned PGA Tour cards as top-25 finishers on the Web.com Tour regular-season money list, and McCarthy has made $75,793 in the first three Finals events to also wrap up a card. In the race for the 25 cards, Lindholm is 19th with $35,836, Every 30th with $25,733, Glover 40th with $17,212, and Cone 59th with $8,162

The series features the top 75 players from the Web.com regular-season money list, Nos. 126-200 in the PGA Tour's FedEx Cup standings, and Paisley and other non-members with enough money to have placed in the top 200. The top-25 finishers on the Web.com regular-season money list are competing against each other for tour priority, with regular-season earnings counting in their totals. The other players are fighting for the 25 cards based on series earnings.

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McIlroy likely to join PGA Tour PAC next year

By Rex HoggardSeptember 20, 2018, 11:28 pm

ATLANTA – The upside of the PGA Tour’s sweeping changes to next year’s playoff finale, along with a host of other significant changes to the schedule, seems to be more engagement in circuit policy by top players.

Jordan Spieth served on the player advisory council this season and will begin his three-year term as one of four player directors on the policy board next year, and Justin Thomas also was on this year’s PAC.

Those meetings might become even more high profile next year.

Projected FedExCup standings

Full-field scores from the Tour Championship

Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

“I'm not on the PAC. I'm probably going to join the PAC next year. Nice to sort of know what's going on and give your input and whatever,” Rory McIlroy said following his round on Thursday at the Tour Championship.

McIlroy said he spoke with Tour commissioner Jay Monahan about the transition to a strokes-based format for the Tour Championship starting next year. Given his take on Thursday to the media it must have been an interesting conversation.

“I like it for the FedExCup. I don't necessarily think it should be an official Tour win. I don't know how the World Ranking points are going to work,” said McIlroy, who is tied for fifth after a first-round 67 at East Lake. “There's a lot of stuff that still needs to be figured out. But in terms of deciding the FedExCup, I think it's good.”

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Thomas (67) happy to feel no pain in wrist

By Rex HoggardSeptember 20, 2018, 11:03 pm

ATLANTA – When Justin Thomas arrived at East Lake he didn’t have very high expectations.

After injuring his right wrist during the final round of the BMW Championship he spent last week in south Florida getting therapy after being diagnosed with a case of tendinitis and little else.

He said he didn’t hit a full shot last week and didn’t expect much out of his game at the finale, but was pleasantly surprised with his play following an opening 67 that left him tied for fifth place and two strokes off the lead. But most of all he was pleased that he didn’t feel any pain in his wrist.

Projected FedExCup standings

Full-field scores from the Tour Championship

Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

“I thought that I may not be playing very well because of my preparation being able to hit as few balls as I have, but no, in terms of pain, it's not an issue,” he said.

Thomas explained that he tested the wrist earlier this week to be sure he was pain-free and conceded he considered not playing the Tour Championship in order to be as healthy as possible for next week’s Ryder Cup.

“If it would have hurt at all, I wouldn't have played,” said Thomas, who will be a rookie on this year’s U.S. team. “No. 1 most important part is my future and my career. I don't want to do anything that's going to put me out for a while. But to me, second most important is Ryder Cup. I would rather not play this week and play the Ryder Cup and be fresh and make sure I'm going to get as many points for the team as possible.”

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Fowler 'pain free' and tied for Tour Championship lead

By Rex HoggardSeptember 20, 2018, 11:01 pm

ATLANTA – The most important member of Team USA at next week’s Ryder Cup may be the team trainer.

Justin Thomas began the season finale nursing a case of tendonitis in his right wrist and Rickie Fowler skipped the first two playoff events after being slowed by a right oblique injury.

Neither player seemed impacted by the injuries on Thursday at the Tour Championship, with Thomas tied for fifth at 3 under and Fowler tied for the lead with Tiger Woods at 5 under par.

Current FedExCup standings

Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

“I needed the 2 1/2 weeks or so of just sitting around really not doing a whole lot,” said Fowler, who tied for eighth last week at the BMW Championship. “It was definitely the right call. If I would have played through the first or second playoff events, there was really no benefit, especially looking at the ultimate goal being ready for the Ryder Cup and to have a chance to be here at East Lake.”

Being rested and pain-free is a vast improvement over how he felt at the PGA Championship last month, when he underwent therapy before and after each round and had to wear tape just to play.

“It's nice to be back swinging pain-free because I wouldn't have wanted to deal with how it felt during PGA week for a continued amount of time,” said Fowler, who finished his day with a bogey-free closing nine to secure a spot in Friday’s final group with Woods.