Palmer's pond: The 149-yard third hole at Aviara Golf Club.
By Eamon Lynch
Thursday, May 24, 2007

A golf weekend with your buddies usually entails rounds at multiple courses and multiple bars, a golf-fest interrupted only by breakfast and beer. A weekend with your spouse is a much more delicate balance: a decent course for you to enjoy, plenty of luxurious diversions for her, and dining options that rise above the Buffalo wings at Hooters. That's where the Four Seasons Aviara comes in. Here's what you'll find at this Golf Magazine Gold Medal Resort near San Diego.

Aviara Golf Club
7,007 yards, par 72
Greens fee: $205-$225; 760-603-6900

Arnold Palmer-designed courses are like Starbucks: a ubiquitous amenity with a comfortingly predictable quality, but rarely a feast for the senses. But once in a while, you'll find one that's more than a bland stroll, like at Aviara Golf Club. This isn't a typical resort course; driving lines are tighter than you'd expect, greens a little trickier, and the potential for trouble much greater. There are a number of fun holes, like No. 8, a par 5 that is reachable for many, but with a pond fronting the green the margin for error is tighter than your pants after a steak dinner.

Sure, there are better courses in the region — Torrey Pines is 30 minutes away — but Aviara presents enough twists and turns to keep you interested.

STAY AT ...

Four Seasons Aviara's summer rates start at $395 per night through Sept. 6. Packages combine room and select amenities. Hop the shuttle to the new Argyle Steakhouse, where the food is superb. The Couple's Suite at the spa lets both of you enjoy the services together. Call 760-603-6800 or visit fourseasons.com/aviara

THE DEAL

The Ultimate Golf Getaway includes accommodations and two rounds of golf per room, per day (including cart), and is valid through the end of the year. Rates start at $570 per room for Sundays through Thursday until Sept. 6, and $630 per room for Fridays and Saturdays. Call 760-603-6800 or visit fourseasons.com/aviara.

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