Course Spy: Pebble Beach Golf Links

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No. 8 at Pebble Beach, one of America's best -- and toughest -- holes.
Pebble Beach Company

Pebble Beach Golf Links
Pebble Beach, Calif.
6,828 yards, par 72
Green fees: $495
800-654-9300
pebblebeach.com

Service

Considering the price, you
might expect champagne
and caviar at every tee.
What you actually get are
smiling staffers at the bag
drop and savvy caddies
on the course. Pebble’s
got that going for it, which
is nice. Now, about that
Dom Perignon …

Pace of Play

Crammed behind groups
of camera-clickers, we
crawled around in five
and a half hours — without
encountering a marshal.
The resort’s indifference
to this problem is an insult
to any golfer who takes
the game as seriously as
Pebble takes itself.

Quality

There are holes you’ll
never forget (5-10, and the
closing duo) and others
(1, 3 and 11) you’ll struggle
to remember. Given the
crowds, we can’t demand
pristine conditions, but it
would’ve been nice if they’d
mentioned that they’d just
punched the greens.

Value

Sure, it’s pretty. But the
glacial pace and midtier
conditions detract
from what should be a
storybook experience. Is
a round of golf ever really
worth $495? Maybe — if
you don’t mind skipping
your monthly payment
on the Mercedes-Benz.

Verdict
Pebble looms so large in
every golfer’s imagination
that the place can actually
have a hard time living
up to the expectations.
Still, if at all possible,
you’ve got to try to play
it once. Or even twice — especially if you have
all day to spare.