South (Destination)

May 2016

Biloxi and surrounds are a golfer’s paradise

by Carolyn Blackburn

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    The Preserve Golf Club, Vancleave

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    The Oaks Golf Club, Pass Christian

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    Diamondhead Country Club

In some circles, the Mississippi Gulf Coast is known as the Golf Coast, as it’s filled with picturesque and challenging courses that make it an award-winning golfing destination.

Here, planners will find many group-friendly courses for attendees interested in either leisurely play during off-session hours or a fun tournament to further connect with colleagues. Groups can book sessions at the courses, or some resorts offer golf package options such as the IP Casino Resort Spa, which books golf outings at Shell Landing Golf Club and Grand Bear Golf Course, among others.  

Following are six great golf course options—located within an hour’s drive or less from Biloxi—that will keep the meeting on par.  

The Preserve Golf Club

The Vancleave-based Preserve Golf Club, a certified Silver Audubon International Signature Sanctuary, is a scenic course with an interesting mixture of holes, according to Chris Champagne, the club’s head golf professional.

“You will use all the clubs in your bag on this par-71 course,” he says, adding skill contests, including longest drive, closest to the pin and longest putt, are big hits during group tournaments.  

The Preserve Golf Club, he adds, specializes in custom-designed events to fit the needs of any group, and before or after play, the clubhouse is available for meetings, receptions and meal functions.

“Its back porch overlooking the 18th green is a great setting to have an ice-cold beer, watch golfers or just enjoy the sun setting,” Champagne says.  

The Bridges Golf Club  

The Bridges Golf Club, located at Hollywood Casino in Bay St. Louis and named among the country’s top 40 casino golf courses by Golf Digest, is also Mississippi’s only Arnold Palmer signature golf course.

“There is almost a mile worth of bridges—you may even spot an alligator,” says Golf Manager Billy Baumgartner.

He adds, “The Bridges offers on-site golf packages, facilitates group tournaments, and has on-site amenities including a clubhouse, golf shop, beverage cart service, an 11-acre practice facility, meeting rooms and banquet facilities.  

 “The Bridges is flexible enough to handle any size group, from 50 to 250 people, for luncheons, gala dinners and cocktail receptions,” he says.

Diamondhead Country Club

Golfers of all skill levels appreciate Diamondhead-based Diamondhead Country Club, which sports 36 holes of championship golf on two courses, the Cardinal and the Pine.  
“Diamondhead has been played by familiar names in golf such as Greg Norman and Zach Johnson,” says Chris Altese, head golf professional.

Diamondhead welcomes amateurs as well, and facilitates many corporate outings and tournaments.

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