Desert Golf: Tom Fazio’s Estancia Club

By George Peper

Estancia Club
The Estancia Club


When it comes to courses on a dinner menu, dessert may be the favorite, but among golf courses, the one-s variety—desert—is surely the least palatable. Scan the top 100 rankings and you’ll find only one or two.

There are exceptions, however, and at the top of the list is Tom Fazio’s Estancia, winding artfully through 640 acres of boulders and cacti at the base of Scottsdale’s Pinnacle Peak. Broad fairways keep the nastiest stones and needles at bay, clever routing minimizes forced carries, immaculate bent grass greens insure a consistently smooth roll, and elevated tees enhance the views of the dazzling terrain. This is a course as delectable as an ice-cream sundae.

Honorable Mention

Cabo del Sol (Ocean), Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

Diamante Dunes, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

Querencia, San Jose del Cabo, Mexico

Quivira, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

Yas Links, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates