November 6th, 2019 12:25PM
Golfers have been coming back to the Mecca for 32 years, including a banner 2019 season that just concluded, and are already booking for year 33 in 2020.
It was started as a cooperative marketing effort for its collection of golf in 1987 and marched onto the destination golf scene with classic courses, new modern masterpieces and more. In 2019 the Mecca included 15 golf courses and 20 lodging partners.
Black Lake Golf Club, Gaylord Golf Club, Indian River Golf Club, The Loon Golf Resort, Michaywe – The Pines, The Natural at Beaver Creek Resort, the Otsego Resort and Treetops Resort are the sites of the 15 current member courses.
The 2019 season is in the books and a hearty thanks goes out to the familiar faces and many new faces who came to our places. Come on back in 2020. We’ll have the golf ready for you.
The Gaylord Golf Mecca, Gaylord Area Convention and Tourism Bureau and the Cherry Capital Airport in Traverse City, honored with the 2017 Governor’s Award for Innovative Tourism Collaboration, have had success bringing golfers from southern states like Texas to Michigan via non-stop air service between Dallas/Fort Worth and Traverse City. Texas golfers are now third on the list of golfers from other states that visit the Mecca.
The Mecca collection has a great ever-growing reputation built on pride in presenting a wonderful golf destination.
Superintendent Paul Holmes keeps the great greens at Gaylord Golf Club rolling and in perfect condition year after year.
Michaywe’ and The Pines course added a caddie program a few years ago to a wonderful walkable parkland style course that has hosted a pair of Michigan Amateur Championships.
The Natural at Beaver Creek Resort, serving golfers for 27 years, is a Mecca model for the northern Michigan lifestyle right down to cabins complete with a fire pit overlooking the course.
Indian River Golf Club joined the Gaylord Golf Mecca in 2017, and more golfers enjoyed the classic golf course in 2019. It dates to 1923 and showcases a traditional, fun round of golf at the course that calls itself “the friendliest golf club in the north.”
Renovations and improvements have been the task at Treetops Resort in recent years. The capital improvements made have brought the facilities in line with the award-winning golf, recreational experiences and service already established at the resort that features five golf courses, including one of the most celebrated Par 3 courses in the world – Threetops, and the work of Tom Fazio (Premier) and the final course designed by legend Robert Trent Jones (Masterpiece). The Signature, The Tradition and Threetops were all designs of famous golf teacher Rick Smith, who launched his career as a golf professional at Treetops.
Black Lake Golf Club in Onaway features the design work of another Jones – Rees Jones, and it made its debut in 2012-13 as one of Golf Digest’s picks on “America’s 100 Greatest Public Courses.” Recent grounds and restaurant improvements at the clubhouse have only improved one of the state’s best stops.
The Loon Golf Resort features three courses and a great variety of lodging and restaurant options. The Loon, redesigned by famous teacher Butch Harmon, is one of the Mecca’s most popular courses. The Lakes course features breathtaking views via woods, ski slopes and holes cut around Lake Michaywe’. The Ridge course has dramatic elevation changes and some par 3 holes that send golfers home talking about the fun they had.
Otsego Resort, under new ownership in 2019 that immediately made an impact with improved golf conditions and work underway, features The Tribute, a modern design by Rick Robbins and PGA Tour analyst Gary Koch. It has a bit of everything – elevation changes, spectacular views, trees, water, big greens and dramatic fairways. Otsego also has its other course, The Classic, which is a classic for family outings, seniors, beginners and those not quite ready or willing that day to take on The Tribute.