Courses and Travel

Course Spy: Trilogy GC at Vistancia

Photo: Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Teen phenom Ryo Ishikawa, posing here with President Clinton and Geoff Ogilvy, was Norman's other surprising pick.

Trilogy Golf Club at Vistancia
Peoria, Arizona
7,291 yards, par 72
Green fees: $45-$129

Attentive without being overbearing. A well-attended bag drop, friendly pro shop personnel and conversant outside service staff instill the right vibe. A shout-out to Amber, the voice of Trilogy's radio ads, who dishes out a tasty B-B-Q sandwich with a healthy dose of charm at the turn.

Pace of Play
We managed to buzz around the course in a brisk four hours and fifteen minutes, which is a pretty impressive clip for a Sunday-morning round during high season, especially on a course that features a number of longish cart rides between holes.

This 2004 Gary Panks design in northwest Phoenix opened as a striking, prairie-style layout with tall grasses and dramatic mountain views. Today, it's scruffier and hemmed in by houses, but it remains a fair, fun test, loaded with beefy par 4s and a classic risk/reward, watery par-5 closer.

We paid $79 on a weekend morning, a price that had us happy before a shot was struck. Sure, the course doesn't stand up to the genuine trophy courses in the Phoenix/ Scottsdale area, but there was no sticker shock with our green fees, either.

The readers of one golf publication rated this track five stars out of five, on a par with Pebble Beach, Bandon Dunes and Bethpage Black. This is delusion bordering on insanity. However, as a diversion to spring-training baseball, Trilogy at Vistancia hits a stand-up double.

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