Designed by the incomparable Arnold Palmer and opened to the public in 2003, Arroyo Golf Club is a Par 72 links style layout that offers five sets of tees to appease golfers of all abilities. The back tees (gold) measure 6,883 yards and play to Bermuda grass fairways and Bentgrass greens. Depending upon your choice of tee boxes, water can come into play on as many as four holes. But that's not what should concern you. Arroyo features 67 strategically placed sand traps that, we're okay with admitting, snared at least five of our shots.
The putting surfaces are vast and roll true with minimal breakage, characteristics we haven't encountered all that often in our exploits around Las Vegas. We'd rate the current conditioning of the greens as average, but golfers here do tend to fix their divot marks.
Resistance to scoring is one category in which we would deduct a few points. Decent golfers should opt to play from as far back as possible as Arroyo is a shorter tract that won't test every club in your bag from the front tees. But, no matter which box you choose to play from, we suggest teeing it up from the gold tees at the Par-5, 533-yard 16th, which features a forced carry over water followed by an aggressive 250+-yard approach into the green. In this guy's opinion, this is the most well designed hole on the entire course.
No. 17 is a short Par-4 with a green protected on all sides by five bunkers. Score well here and then make your way to the Par-4, 401-yard 18th, which offers one of the more challenging approach shots on the course. No. 18 is a solid finishing hole that will punish an errant approach while rewarding one struck true.
The clubhouse won't wow you in either size or offerings since the main floor is shared by both the pro shop and dining area. But, the menu comes complete with all of the post-round staples you'd expect and the drink selection is on par with any quality facility in town.
If you're looking to avoid the crowds, enjoy what Mother Nature has to offer and have a chance at carding a low score, we'd suggest Arroyo Golf Club. The tract is in good shape and while it's not what we would consider challenging, it does have its moments for the double-digit handicap. Looking for a stiffer test of your true abilities? Then we'd say take a run at TPC Las Vegas or Rio Secco.
ADDRESS: 2250 Red Springs Drive, Las Vegas, Nevada 89135
WEBSITE: Click here
DIRECTIONS FROM THE STRIP: Head west on Flamingo Rd. (7.2 miles) and merge onto the 215 freeway (2.9 miles). Take exit 25 to Sahara Ave. (0.3 miles) and then turn left onto Red Rock Ranch Rd. (0.1 miles). Turn right onto Red Springs Dr. and follow for 0.4 miles.
RATES: $85-$109; unless you can find a member, in which case it's $45
Gold: 71.9/124 (6,883 yards)
Black: 69.7/121 (6,433 yards)
Blue: 66.7/112 (5,904 yards)
White: 70.2/117 (5,361 yards)
Green: 66.9/112 (4,866 yards)