Few things bring greater pleasure than a warm afternoon on the golf course, strolling down lush green fairways as the sun peaks its way through towering trees on either side. There’s something about this serene setting that makes me feel there’s no other place I’d rather be in that moment. It’s a great feeling, and one you’re sure to experience all day at Silverado Resort & Spa.
Nestled in the heart of Napa Valley, California, Silverado Resort & Spa boasts 36 championship golf holes (North & South courses) that wind their way through the rolling hills of wine country. On my recent trip to Silverado, I teed-it-up on the North Course, which plays host to the PGA Tour’s Safeway Open in October.
It’s no surprise that the PGA Tour chose Silverado Resort & Spa as a site for an event. In addition to the championship golf, the property boasts a variety of on site accommodations, tennis courts, swimming pools, spa services, a market, bakery, and several farm-to-table dining options perfect for a post round dinner.
Add in the fact that it’s located only minutes from a bounty of vineyards and wineries and you should have no problem convincing the Mrs. that a weekend getaway at Silverado Resort & Spa is a must. The only question you’ll be asking yourself is, “Will one weekend be enough?” (Hint: unlikely!)
The North Course, a Robert Trent Jones Jr. original design, was redone in 2011 by Hall of Famer Johnny Miller. It’s played host to 14 PGA Tour Events, however I found it to be very playable for golfers of all levels. Though the Tournament tees stretch to nearly 7,200 yards (rating 74.3/slope 135), the White tees are a much more palatable 6,300 yards (rating 70.2/slope 128).
On the course, the impressively large oak and pine trees flanking each fairway do demand some accuracy off the tee, but with many of the holes running alongside one another, you’ll likely have the opportunity to find an errant tee shot and do your best to scramble for par.
The natural elevation changes offer some picturesque views of the nearby hillsides, where you’ll find no shortage of beautiful homes overlooking the course in the distance. Don’t be too distracted though, or you may find yourself on the wrong end of the dreaded three-putt on these large, undulating greens.
In my view, the course saves some of it’s best holes for last.
Both back-nine par 3’s bring water into play, and are as beautiful as they are challenging. While they aren’t overly long (Hole 11: 182 yards / Hole 15: 189 yards from the Tournament tees), each tee shot requires carry over a pond lurking in front, waiting to swallow any poorly struck shot.
The round concludes with a nice scoring opportunity on the final three holes in the form of a short par 4, sandwiched between two par 5s. Who doesn’t love the opportunity to make some birdies late in the round?
The final hole may in fact be my favorite. With the clubhouse looming in the distance, the 575 yard par 5 offers one final glimpse at the larger-then-life trees surrounding the tee, and presents one last chance to walk the same fairways as the big boys on the PGA Tour.
If you can avoid the two fairway bunkers on the right, you may have a chance to get home in two on the last. Either way, do your best to find the surface in regulation and if you’re so lucky to sink that birdie putt, turn to the grandstands behind the 18th and give a little tip of the cap.
While they’re not likely to be full of screaming fans, you never know who may be watching!