Every conceivable string wsas being pulled and the boys flew down to southern Florida for Super Bowl XLII, for this was just another excuse to get in a few more rounds. The first course I contacted was the famed Doral Golf Resort & Spa, and each time we tried to secure a tee time we were told it was full and reminded, “You know the Super Bowl is that week?” While we were in Miami, we tried TeeBone (http://www.teebone.com) and secured the White Course, better known as the Great White.
Doral, of course, is the home of the course known as the Blue Monster, but as any avid golfer can tell you, there is more to Doral than that one course. The “factory,” as we came to call it, has five courses, and the Super Bowl had them running nearly 24/7 during the week before the game. We played the Great White on Saturday.
Redesigned and reopened on December 6, 2005, the new Greg Norman design provides a balanced challenge for every level. There are hundreds of bunkers, strong prevailing winds, thousands of palm trees (this was the most dramatic change) and a large number of water hazards. “Coquina” or crushed seashells are prevalent on many holes and add to the course challenge. Norman used native trees and Scottish-style bunkering on the 14 holes where water comes into play to add to the charm of the layout. Bunker quality and drainage were a key factor to the course redesign. As Greg Norman said, “The Great White is a departure that complements the other four courses at Doral very well.”
Hole 3 (360 yards, par 4)
As you ponder your shot from the tee, think like Clint Eastwood: “Do you feel lucky?” You must decide whether to cut the corner on this dogleg left or to take the safe bet and aim right. Neither is completely safe as the risky shot could land you in the drink and the “safe” shot means your approach is over three deep bunkers guarding the green. It’s your decision.
Hole 4 (195 yards, par 3)
Your shot off the tee must carry water all the way to the green. Tee shots that fade off to the left may also become wet. The only safe area, to the right, is protected by two bunkers. This layout, coupled with the changing wind, makes this a very difficult par three.
Hole 5 (572 yards, par 5)
Some might think that Norman received a discount on his purchase of coquina when they see the amount of crushed seashells to the left and right of this fairway. From the box, two large trees “beautifully frame this long par 5,” or at least that’s what the yardage book says. I can tell you that slamming your ball into one of them and having it fall into the coquina is not so beautiful. Hole five is a long par five; you will need to stay out of harm’s way and have three clean shots to make par. Take care on your approach as a series of bunkers guard the green on the left and a native area on the right will catch those who meander in that direction.
Hole 9 (434 yards, par 4)
How much do you want to cut off and how much do you want to risk? That is the question of the day. Choose your angle of attack from the tee box. This slight dogleg left creates a real dilemma as water runs the entire length of the left side. On the right side of the landing area are two traps, which will make your chance of hitting the green in regulation even more difficult. Once you have made your perfect drive, you are ready to approach the green with a high to midiron. Just remember that this green is narrow, three bunkers guard the approach on the right and the water is on the left.
Hole 14 (602 yards, par 5)
This long par five double dogleg makes you think for each shot. Off the tee, you must avoid the clump of trees on the right (and the coquina in which they grow). The landing area is very small and your second shot again must stay clear of the trees on the right and avoid the water that runs along the left side of the fairway starting about 200 yards before the green. The green is very small and protected by the water on the left and two bunkers in front. Making par will be an achievement here.
Hole 16 (194 yards, par 3)
Water, water everywhere … and you will be wondering how you will walk away dry from this hole. From the tee box there is no margin for error, with water in front and on the right of the green and twin bunkers protecting the left flank.
Hole 17 (452 yards, par 4)
A drive down the left side of this fairway will put you in perfect position for this dogleg left, but not too far as you need to avoid the trees and your old friend the coquina. A position to the left will leave you a shorter approach to the green, but this is a long hole and there are six traps to the far right to catch those who fade on this shot. The green is a large double shared with hole 13.
Hole 18 (529 yards, par 5)
Brace yourself for a good finishing hole. (It was the end for some of my group.) I happily drove my ball perfectly down the center, and proudly walked to it while watching my fellow golfers pounding out of the coquina left and right to put their balls back into play. A pair of traps on both sides of the fairway can catch any drive left or right of your target. The second shot must be carefully (or luckily, in my case) placed, hugging the left side of the fairway crossing over a coquina waste bunker that cuts across the entire hole and avoiding the water that comes into play on the right. The water runs from about 100 yards from the green up the entire right side and is very close to the green. Two traps guard the front, and three catch balls in the back.
DORAL GOLF RESORT & SPA
4400 NW 87th Ave.
Miami, FL 33178
tel 800 71 DORAL
GBTA’s Convention 2021 will bring the business travel industry together for the first time in a long time. Once again, you’ll learn and connect with experts and each other, along with discussions with leading thinkers, entrepreneurs and change makers addressing the issues that matter most.
I imagine that when writer Hans Christian Andersen mused, “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale,” he was standing at the edge of Copenhagen’s historic Tivoli Gardens, one of his favorite haunts, enlivened by the swirl of human happiness that surrounded him: children laughing; carousels spinning; games of chance played for prizes; lovers holding hands; hungry people whispering over sweets, hot drinks, beer and towering, open-faced smørrebrød, Denmark’s quintessential sandwich. That fairy tale lives on today at the second-oldest amusement park in the world, a spectacle of folly architecture, bakeries, gardens, rides, restaurants, puppet shows and joy ... and which also happens to be one of the city’s most storied places to convene for business.
The restored Park Hyatt Toronto reopened its doors, bringing luxury, sophistication and glamour alongside a nod to the hotel’s Canadian heritage. Alessandro Munge of Studio Munge collaborated on the hotel’s refresh, drawing inspiration from Canada’s seasons and natural landscapes.
The Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) Convention 2021 will be unlike any other convention before it, as we come together in person for the first time since the business travel industry drastically changed and look forward to rebuilding and reshaping the future. GBTA Convention 2021 will bring all of us together to learn from experts and each other, in-person at Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, Nov. 17–19. The safety of our attendees is our top priority. View health and safety protocols.
I recently dined at Irwin’s in Philadelphia. The restaurant is located on the rooftop of the Bok Building, a former school turned collective of small businesses, non-profits, artist workshops, a bar and restaurant. I previously visited Bok for the bar and yoga classes, and I was excited to experience the restaurant.
Cathay Pacific reaffirms its commitment to reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 with a pledge to use Sustainable Aviation Fuel for 10 percent of its total fuel consumption by 2030. The airline has made pioneering efforts in supporting SAF development for more than 10 years.
Without a doubt, the pandemic changed the role of airports in the travel industry. Hamad International Airport’s role evolved in many ways since the pandemic hit. Now, more than ever, airports are responsible for creating a secure passenger experience. As the gateway to Qatar and the world, the safety and wellbeing of staff and passengers has always been at the core of Hamad International Airport’s strategy.
Arriving early afternoon in Puerto Rico, we jumped in an Uber and took a short, 15-minute drive from the airport to La Concha. As it was Tuesday, the streets were not too busy and the hotel lobby was calm. During the weekend, the scene likely would have been more bustling. We were greeted by a staff member who requested proof of vaccination and government-issued ID, and were given a wristband to indicate we were fully vaccinated. All guests are required to be vaccinated and wear masks at all times while moving around the hotel. Hand sanitizer stations were placed around the lobby, in elevators and in each common area.