Photo: John Mummert/USGA When I first played Pebble Beach in 1980, I paid $50. I could make a tee time three months out, even though I was staying at a Best Western in Salinas, not the Lodge at Pebble Beach.
Today, you'll fork over a minimum of $495 for 18 holes, and if you're not holed up at a Pebble Beach Resorts property, you'll have to get lucky to play, with all-too-rare tee times available only one day in advance.
Yes, the Pebble experience is crazy expensive, but if you're a serious golfer, you've got to do it once in your life. The Summer Getaway Package will help. It includes two nights at the Inn at Spanish Bay—one of my favorite golf hotels—plus a round at Pebble and another at either Spyglass Hill or Spanish Bay. No frills—just a guarantee that you'll get to play Pebble.
Rates start at $1,995 per person, with a two-night minimum (pebblebeach.com). For more exclusive travel deals and packages, go to iTunes and download Golf Magazine's Front 9 app, available for use on the iPad