Fifty years in business anywhere is a feat. Fifty years in Temecula, a city that’s only been a city for 31 of those, says something about the staying power of a certain place.
That place is the 27-hole golf course now known as Temecula Creek Golf Club. Built in 1969 and part of the larger Temecula Creek Inn, Temecula Creek Golf Club and its management have withstood the coronavirus storm to now offer friendly, approachable play that has attracted more players, and more returning ones, than ever before.
Although the course and the resort closed in March in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19, the facility’s 50th year was only temporarily interrupted. The course reopened in late April under strict health and safety guidelines and maintains operations today. The Temecula Creek Inn’s hotel, restaurant and events have not yet reopened.
In early 2018, the Pechanga Tribe purchased the charming boutique resort and golf course. Soon after, the tribe injected more than $1 million dollars into the property’s golf tracks alone. The tee boxes, greens, bunkers, irrigation system and more were upgraded and renovated after 20 years.
“Our golfers liked it here before the upgrades, but everyone knew the golf course could offer a much better experience,” said Steve Saunders, first assistant golf professional at Temecula Creek Golf Club. “Now, we have people raving about the course. We’ve never had so many reviews, and positive ones, on the review sites online. Plenty of four and five stars coming our way.”
The course covers 300 acres of rustic beauty and features dramatic elevation changes and sweeping mountain views. It’s also sunny nearly year-round.
Lending to those rating stars are the vast course improvements, the majority of which wrapped up shortly before temporary closing. Golfers now find new and laser leveled tee boxes, full bunker renovations, upgraded greens and more frequent pin location changes coupled with ongoing irrigation updates.
Pechanga continues its investment into the course with a fleet of new golf carts to arrive in the months ahead. The course also elongated the time between players from 10 to 15-minute intervals. Amateur players can easily handle 18 holes in three hours, and most appreciate the extra time to avoid crowding.
Another likable aspect of the course? The rates on golf rounds. Twilight green fees run as low as $25 for 18 holes. With an annual membership to the four-star facility as rated by Golf Digest, rates set one back just $35 for morning play.
Each nine-hole track offers something different, and guests can combine them any way they like.
The Creek course offers friendly fairways and an open layout with direct approaches giving players the best chance to score. The more traditional Oaks course provides golfers fun, memorable shots on friendly, oak-lined fairways.
Set alongside the historic Stone House cottage, the nine holes of the Stone House course are the most challenging at the club, demanding precise tee shots and featuring dramatic changes in elevation and bends requiring accurate shot shaping and distance control.
“Being one of the region’s oldest golf courses carries a badge of honor and one that we don’t take lightly. To honor the longevity of the facility and the Temecula region, we’re working hard so the next generation can celebrate another 50 years and beyond,” said Michael Feeley, Temecula Creek Inn General Manager. Peter Wininger is the head pro.
By Ciara Green