Montreal is renowned for its sophisticated French-fusion cuisine and summer jazz festival. The golf? Not so much. All that will change after the Presidents Cup visits Sept. 27-30.
Unfortunately, those of us not named Ernie Els don't have a shot of playing the ultra-private Royal Montreal Country Club. But if you've got a Presidents Cup ticket, or plan on visiting North America's most European city to parlez vous your Francais, you've got about 100 other options.
Start just across the street from Royal Montreal at the 36-hole St. Raphael Golf Club (514-696-4653, golfstraphael.ca; $70-$170). Its No. 1 course is a pleasant warm-up and half the price of No. 2. But with lakes, wetlands, tight corridors and small greens, No. 2 is worth the extra coin. Across town away from the chaos, Montreal Island Golf Club (514-448-6000, cgimgolf.com; $35-$80) dispenses two Pat Ruddy courses, the North, a 6,600-yard, par-70 parkland layout, and the South, its 7,180-yard, par-70, faux links sibling, which evokes Ruddy's Irish homeland, right down to its 50-foot dunes and six dozen pot bunkers.
And it's not just Celine Dion who gets to belt out the big ones in these parts. The 7,103-yard, par-72 Des Seigneurs Course at Le Versant Golf Center (450-964-2251, golfleversant.com/en/, $69) is such a brawny brute you'll almost never get to pull anything but driver off the tee. For more information on Montreal festivals and accommodations, visit montreal.com, s'il vous plait.