You wouldn’t think it in January, when the landscape is covered in ice and snow, but Minnesotans love to golf. The state consistently ranks at or near the top in golfer participation in the U.S. (more than 733,000 Minnesotans play the game), and golfers nationwide flock to our 508 courses, nearly 90 percent of which are open to the public. Minnesota is the only state to have hosted all 13 USGA national championships in addition to five PGA championships and the Walker and Curtis Cups. In 2016, it will host the Ryder Cup.
It’s no joke: We’re serious about golf.
It may come as no surprise, then, that Minneapolis–St. Paul International is the first airport to sport a 12,000-square-foot interactive golf facility, PGA–MSP (located in the Airport Mall above Ike’s Food & Cocktails). Both travelers and non-flying golfers (with advanced reservations) can utilize the space, which features high-tech golf simulators, a putting green, a virtual driving range, a golf shop with the latest PGA Championship and Ryder Cup merchandise, and a bar, Champions’ Grille by Ike’s. Guests can receive instruction from PGA professionals, get custom fit for clubs, and play dozens of the world’s top courses via the simulators. You can essentially golf the world over without leaving MSP.
Traveling? Tee-off before you take off on these five, first-rate courses available for play at PGA–MSP.
- Pebble Beach: California, USA
Considered one of the world’s most challenging courses, Pebble Beach Golf Links offers Pacific Ocean views and a rich, historic past that dates back to 1919.
- TCP Sawgrass: Florida, USA
Try your hand at one of the most unforgiving holes on the PGA Tour, the Island Green (the 17th hole on the Stadium Course). Completely surrounded by water, more than 100,000 balls are retrieved from the drink here each year.
- St. Andrews, Old Course: Scotland
Considered the “home of golf,” the sport was first played here in the early 1400s. It was banned in 1457 by King James II who felt its popularity among young men detracted from their practice of archery. Fortunately, King James IV became an ardent golf fan and removed the ban in 1502.
- Druids Glen: Ireland
Known as “the Augusta of Europe,” this course opened in 1995 and hosted the Irish Open four years in a row. Colin Montgomerie won the tournament the first two years, followed by David Carter and Sergio Garcia, who shot a 64 in the final round.
- Infamous 18
The famous paintings of renowned, Minnesota artist, Loyal “Bud” Chapman come to life on this fantasy course that features holes on New York City’s Wall Street, at the foot of Machu Picchu, and from the rim of the Grand Canyon.
To reserve a session at PGA–MSP call 612-436-7990 or email [email protected].