By George Christopher Thomas, Travel Writer

NEWPORT BEACH, CA — One of the most delightful golf courses to play in Orange County is Pelican Hill in Newport Beach.  The level of service is second to none, starting off with the bag drop and valet being right next to each other.  You pull up to the property, and pop out to start your exceptional day.  Within a few minutes, our golf clubs were on the cart, and we were off to change into our golf shoes and begin to enjoy this world famous resort owned by the Irvine Company.

We were celebrating my dad’s 64th birthday, so we got there a little early so we could hit golf balls and putt around before teeing off.  The driving range was big enough to hit every club in your bag, and we were hitting off grass.  I could see just coming here to practice, but we had a scheduled 12:25pm tee time, and since this is one of the top golf courses in the United States, we were itching to get out there.

Pelican Hill Golf Course has two 18 hole courses, with spectacular ocean views from both the north and south courses.  Each one has a different feel, with the north course having sweeping panoramas and tee boxes that you can launch your ball from, and the south course is more of a position golf course, where institutional local knowledge is key and can help out quite a bit.

As luck would have it, we were playing with two members and a forecaddie.  If you don’t know what a forecaddie is, this is a person that works at the golf course and is your own personal helper.  It is like having a golf assistant on staff for your entire round.  It is similar to the caddies you see on the Professional Golf Association tour, only they don’t just walk next to you and carry your bag.  The forecaddie runs ahead of you on every hole, watches your tee shot, then has tips and yardage ready when you get to your ball.

It truly is a great experience to have a forecaddie, and our guy Dave helped out at every turn.  He would rake the bunkers for us, read putts for us, give us yardage to the pin, and help us understand the holes as we played them.  If you have never played Pelican Hill or have played there a thousand times, it is definitely worth it to request a forecaddie.  They can easily shave a few strokes off your game just from their knowledge of the golf courses.

The great thing about Pelican Hill is everything the property has to offer.  There is fine dining, a world class pool and spa, and a nice place to stay for a night or two.  There is an air of sophistication and fanciness as you walk around amongst the beautiful people.  This is a perfect place to celebrate an anniversary, birthday, or just your love for your significant other.  Pelican Hill is a five-star classy place, and is worth every penny.  By all means, the next time you are in Newport Beach, come by and play a round of golf, have an exceptionally delicious meal, and stay for a night or two.


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