Quick. Say the word Tampa, and what is the first thing that comes to mind?
All of those would be acceptable answers. But you might want to consider another four-letter word that is becoming synonymous with the Tampa Bay area - golf. Make that outstanding golf.
The PGA Tour certainly thinks so. Every March the world's best players head to the Tampa area for the Valspar Championship, held at Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club. 2014 U.S. Open champion, Martin Kaymer, calls the Copperhead Course at Innisbrook his favorite layout on the PGA Tour.
One of four Larry Packard-designed courses on property, Copperhead is a traditional layout that flows naturally through the tall pines, utilizing water hazards and bunkering to create a memorable challenge.
Innisbrook features home-like 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom villas, many with golf course views. Looking for something to do after golf? There are five different restaurants; tennis on 11 beautifully maintained Har-Tru clay courts; six swimming pools including the multi-million-dollar Loch Ness Monster Pool with waterfalls and water slides; a fitness center; a children's recreation center; 60 acres of lakes; plus jogging and cycling opportunities.
Not far from Innisbrook is another terrific all-encompassing destination, Saddlebrook Resort. Arnold Palmer designed two championship courses nestled inside 480 acres of lush woodlands.
Accommodations include well-appointed guestrooms for two as well as one-, two-, and three-bedroom suites for larger groups. All rooms are located within walking distance to the main resort area which includes a variety of dining options, a world-class spa facility, 45 tennis courts, and the 500,000-gallon Superpool.
Dan Maples is well known for several renowned layouts in the Pinehurst, N.C., area, but he has left his mark in Tampa at the 27-hole Carrollwood Country Club. To play this Maples design, you must be a guest of a member or stay next door at Emerald Greens Condo Resort. Each of the resort's luxury villas are perfectly suited for golf groups with full kitchens, spacious living areas, and well-appointed bedrooms and baths. Both casual and more formal dining is available on property at the Oasis Poolside Café and the 1972 Bar & Grille.
Many of our customers will stay at Emerald Greens, play Carrollwood once or twice, and head off to play other area courses on their other golf days. If your group enjoys the flexibility of playing a number of different courses at different venues, we have a number of outstanding choices. Courses such as Bardmoor, Bayou Club, Cheval, Fox Hollow, Heritage Isles, Lake Jovita, Lexington Oaks, River Hills, Southern Hills, Tampa Palms, TPC Tampa Bay, Westchase, and World Woods (36 holes) are all within reasonable driving distance and offer unique championship layouts.
The courses noted above can be played from a wide variety of accommodations including the aforementioned Emerald Greens Resort. Other popular places to stay in the greater Tampa area include Doubletree Resort by Hilton in North Redington Beach; Embassy Suites Westshore; Hampton Inn Tampa Airport; Hampton Inn & Suites Ybor City; Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites; Hyatt Place Tampa Airport; Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach; Legacy Vacation Club Indian Shores; and Lake Jovita Club Villas.
Wherever you decide to stay and play, greater Tampa Bay also provides some great opportunities for after golf activities, dining, and nightlife. We know many of our groups will head east on I-4 to visit the Seminole Hard Rock Casino for some poker and/or table games. In addition, there are now some incredible breweries to visit such as Cigar City Brewing, Tampa Bay Brew Bus, and many more. All these things help create make Tampa into one of Florida's most exciting golf destinations.