As publisher of Westchester Magazine and Hudson Valley Magazine, every year I look forward to working on our annual Golf Guide. I love the game of golf. I love playing the game with my family, friends, and business acquaintances. I love waking up early on weekends and heading down to my golf club to play. I love to leave work early and get a round late in the afternoon. And probably my all-time favorite “love” is to play a round of golf on a Saturday or Sunday morning, then return to my golf club late in the afternoon and play a second round when the crowds have departed and the golf course is almost empty.
If you belong to a private golf club, as I do, you know that a club can become your home away from home. And what a fun, satisfying, and challenging home it is. Of course, sometimes—make that oftentimes—I attend golf charity events at other clubs.
Westchester Magazine and Hudson Valley Magazine support seemingly hundreds of golf
outings each season. I’m not complaining, of course. I get to play.
This year, our Golf Guide includes something very different: a feature on golfing in the Sunshine State. This past winter, our golf panel (learn who they are by turning to page 40) headed south. Why did we leave our community—a region known for its great golf?
I received a letter last year from Jim McClean, golf pro and teacher of the Jim McClean Golf School at Doral Golf Resort in Miami. The letter explained that Jim had been a pro at Sleepy Hollow Country Club, had worked at Westchester Country Club and at Quaker Ridge, and was still a reader of Westchester Magazine, and, of course, of our annual Golf Guide. And he invited me to attend his golf school. So, with excitement, I shared the letter with Dave Donelson, our contributing golf writer and editor, and it didn’t take us long to agree to go to “golf school.” (See page 58 to find out what we learned at Jim’s school.)
Since we were planning to fly down to
This is our seventh(!) annual golf guide. Each year, we’ve let you know about the most difficult, most challenging, most rewarding, most irritating holes in our top-notch country clubs. This year, we played many of Westchester’s private golf clubs to test the top 18 risk-and-reward holes. The list of the holes came from the club pros whom we asked to fill out a survey naming their top risk-and-reward holes. Then we went out to play them.
Dave Donelson, who wrote the feature (see page 34), played 35 of the 38 private golf courses in Westchester. I played about half of them. I took some risks on some of those golf holes and, on occasion, I was rewarded. But more often the risk I bravely took resulted in a double bogie. (Perhaps I need to return to Jim McClean’s school.)
We’d like you to weigh in with which holes you consider to be the best in Westchester and the Hudson Valley for next year’s Golf Guide. Is there a hole on your home course that you particularly like—a hole that you find especially challenging or especially rewarding? We want to know. Please visit westchestermagazine.com or hvmag. com and add your comments. Or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our Golf Guide also features a photographic peek at some of the very beautiful and exquisitely plush locker rooms that our local private clubs offer. Ever been inside the locker room Donald Trump built in his Trump National Golf Club in Briarcliff Manor? Let’s just say it’s very Trump-like. See for yourself starting on page 48.
There’s lots more here, but I’ll let you discover it on your own.
Enjoy the golf season, and please let us know what you think of our Golf Guide.
Ralph A. Martinelli