Quintero Golf Club Review - Four Stars! Sonoran Desert Beauty, Secluded Championship Play, Elevation Challenges

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Quintero Golf Club, a new, semi-private, course, built by Rees Jones and Steve Weisser in 2000, is a traditional desert classic course offering challenging year-round play across 7208 yards in the sprawling Phoenix Valley.

Known as the Valley of the Sun, Peoria, Arizona sits just outside of Scottsdale, an easy one hour drive, and the Quintero Golf Club is situated so far off the main highway that driving the nearly deserted I-17E to Quintero Lane one can nearly think they are lost if it weren't for the three armed "W" shaped Cactus that stands as a driver's location marker.

I also used Google Maps to pinpoint my location so departing AZ-74 and quickly adding the 18 miles from the highway I watched the desert roll. Soon, Quintero Lane, the only paved road around approached and about one mile from the road, deeper into the Phoenix Valley, the entrance to Quintero.

High season for the Quintero Golf course runs December through February, when other than a bit windy, the desert is cool in the morning and warms up to a comfortable 65F to 70F degrees.

The desert begins to heat up quickly beginning in March with the off season, which is an industry term although for the Quintero off season means pace of play adjustments with T-times beginning earlier in the morning allowing for the possibility of two rounds before the scorching desert sun sidelines the golfers to the clubhouse for a couple of cold ones and possibly the back nine before dark.

An 18-hole course, with a Par 72, Quintero is 7208 yards, with a slope of 147 and fast running greens.

A classic championship course Quintero is designed with bent grass in the greens and Bermuda grass on the fairways. Quintero is ranked top 25 Golf course in Arizona. When the major-league baseball players head out to Arizona for Spring training Quintero is the club of choice and when the teams are free, many of the players are competing on the greens.

The pace of play can run about four or five hours with stunning vistas, beautiful and challenging elevation changes, Quintero Golf Club, known throughout the golfing world as one of the top desert Golf courses.

For the golf connoisseur Quintero is at the top of every serious golfer's bucket list. Playing Quintero, for the serious is one of the best and admired throughout golfing circles.

With signature holes that can cause even the confident golfer to stop and pause, holes are designed for the maximum challenge with some offering up to ten different tee boxes, impressive yardage challenges along with desert interruptions: rattlesnakes have been known to appear in the summer and Mexican pigs are on the greens year-round.

Quintero for the Novice Golfer

When I received an invitation to spend the weekend at the club which included accommodations at the Quintero Condominium used for Stay and Play packages, (which will be featured separately) even with my lack of skill known only to myself I immediately said "yes."

As a novice golfer, and quite honestly even that is an exaggeration, the last time I picked up a golf club  was to putt the ball through the windmill on the final Putt-Putt Golf Challenge.

Although after accepting the invitation I did have a distant memory of attempting to play golf at least once. So, let's say as a beginning golfer, what is most important to remember is, go into the game with the victory in mind.

Now, I had some time to work my mental game up. I had a plan, and my plan included almost the exact replica of the day with the one exception: Nowhere in my plan did I see myself playing the first and third holes at Quintero and making Par (possibly a little luck and a nice gusty breeze) hitting it on the greens in three shots and with a couple of putting (lessons) finally sinking the ball! Shocking for the golf pro! And shocking for me also.

So, backing up.

Having met the Golf Pro, Brad, a genuinely nice and accommodating guy. We met the day before my T-time and he explained what we would be doing. I thought it best to explain my plan without giving away my learning curve.

We met at the Pro Shop. I was fitted with a glove, and after the caddy fitted us both with clubs, we were on our way.

Quintero, from the pro shop, opens in front of you with lush greens, perfect summer green grass, against the deep desert shades and cactus. And we arrived at the training greens.

For the championship golfer Quintero has secured teh talents of John Dahl, a recognized professional golf instructor who runs clinics, hosts weekends and provides one-on-one instruction. He has won 26 Golf Championship and listed in Golf Magazines for eight consecutive years in the top 100 Golf Instructors. 

For my introduction to the Quintero Greens, Brad was my golf instructor and it was his job essentially to get me up and teeing-off by afternoon's end.

Fortunately, I have a sports background and that isn't even the key. The key, I found was listening to the analogies he used, as he explained he taught high-schoolers, so bringing it down from the professional golfer looking to improve the chip shot to someone like myself, looking to hit the ball, at least once and not embarrass myself, too badly.

I felt that once I began to hit the ball consistently, and they have a pyramid of golf balls waiting for golfers wanting to practice. He began to use analogies that stuck the point. Essentially the player should end the swing position in the "Championship Trophy" position and the front foot should "squash the bug." Translation: every championship golf trophy has the golfer in a pose, after the swing the golfer should be in that position and the front ball of the foot should have squashed the bug.

Odd as it sounds it works as one is trying to adjust: bend the knees, eyes on the ball, swing the club only, not taking the eyes off the ball, only using shoulders to swing (upper body movement), the information ticks away as the small white ball teases you from the ground. So enthusiastically whacking that ball sometimes works and other times it doesn't.

Golfing of course is not only one shot. And most have seen at least one professional golfer play a round at least once. So, we know the chip shot, played with the iron, and the drive, which allows the ball to travel long distances and then the putter.

The driver is used at the beginning shot. The ball is teed-up and the most important goal is to cover as much ground on the opening shot as possible. Which is why the driver, lightweight with a larger club head aids the shot.

After assessing where the ball has landed, for the novice it can be a bit difficult to see and for the trained eye (and Brad also used a one-eye binocular which shows where the ball is and the yardage needed), it is easier.

The next shot is always handled with the Iron and especially if you are looking to cover water or sand traps, the Irons help with loft creating the high arch which looks spectacular and slight roll, irons have a controlled roll, onto the greens (very good) or just to the border of the sand (not so good).

The last shot Brad explained was the putt, and as I had explained my limited putt knowledge we didn't spend a lengthy time going through the dynamics of the putt. I found the putt may be the simplest shot and probably the most difficult to master.  A tap on the ball seems to be all that is needed.

Of course, we talked about "how fast the greens run" Quintero's run fast. Slope, which way would water roll if it rained, that is the way the ball will roll also.

So, after we finished the introductory practice. We set about, it was supposed to be about 45minutes of instructions and then two hours of play and viewing the course. We ended up extending the time just somewhat and having about three and half hours.

To play Quintero, the complete 18 holes, one can expect four to five hours, depending on the number of players and the tone of the play. Quintero Golf Club rules call for the golfers to continue at a "pace of play" moving through the course and have Golf Marshalls who, especially in peak season, ride through the course and watch for anything unusual.

Quintero is a championship course and operate traditionally except for a few accepted technological advances which are altering the rules of the course (not of play). Music, which would be considered a major faux-pas, and could at one time have been grounds for removal is now allowed with small blue-tooth speakers and in isolated spaces, the tee box when no one is around.

Quintero also offers its gofers beverage cart service. Four hours, in the hot sun, can be exhausting and dehydrating and one of the most important rules at Quintero is stay hydrated. Comfort stations with ice and water along with restrooms are in strategic locations on the grounds.

The Signature

Like all golf courses, the front nine the back nine Quintero with more than 7000 yards of courses has some very expansive and challenging holes with a single or multiple sand traps, multiple lakes (in the drink) which is unusual in the middle of the desert to see such a pristine looking lake. It is man-made and used also for irrigation.

After spending about 45minutes with instructions, we drove up to the first hole. Each of the holes have a maximum yardage and a minimum yardage, which is color coded. The choice is the players.

On the front nine the Hole Nine is the most challenging: "The tee shot to this unforgettable par 3 flies over a water obstacle that makes its way from the distant putting greens to the 18th hole. The Tee boxes, of which there are ten, are made from handcrafted walls places the green on a stage."

The distance challenges begin at 125 yards to 212 yards.

On the back nine, Hole 18, is the most challenging at top yardage of 434 yards. The description reads: "This par 4 requires a good tee shot for the best chance at par. Its elevated green is backdropped by a peaceful waterfall and pond.

Based on yardage along Hole 14 with a challenge between 427 yards to 552 yards is the most significant distance shot. The description of this par 5 hole reads: "On this dazzling par 5, a rolling green ribbon of turf and soft bunker contouring captures your attention. A generous fairway awaits the tee shot but the second shot should be played away from the multiple bunkers lining the right.

For the two holes Brad and I played, Hole 1, the perfect par 4 staring hole, the medium length has ample room off the tee and a very approachable green. And without the proper industry language I must say, the tee boxes which each hole has a circular tee stage, after choosing the yardage (distance) of the challenge, recommendation area made and not mandatory, players choose the length of the challenge they feel fits them on the day.

For me, on Hole 1, you guessed it 303 yards, was the shortest distance between the tee-box and the putter's cup. So, taking the driver and hoping, the first swing picked up the ground and left the grass sliced off and the teasing taunting white ball still standing.

Practice, Brad said, and mentally talking myself through the checklist, the second thwack and just like it's supposed to do, the white ball went somewhere down the green. Now I couldn't see it but Brad, explained it wasn't far at all, and I did quite well. (And I believe him!)

Soon we were hitting the second shot and onto the greens, another elevated circle with the putter's cup. It wasn't long after that after three tries and remember, also, we didn't practice the elusive putt, Hole 1 was completed. I felt accomplished. The he said, on to Hole 3.

It is described as "Perhaps one of the most challenging holes on the course. A large scenic lake frames the left side, teasing players to hug it with their tee shot for an easier second to the green."

For me, seeing the lake translated to hit the ball as far right as possible, staying away from the lake.  And without going through each swing, and miss, I did end the day, having played two holes on the Quintero Championship Golf Course.

We spent the remainder of the afternoon touring the grounds. Quintero is gorgeous desert with never ending views that stretch to the horizon with the Sonoran Desert landscape offset by the lush manicured greens and as the course runs into the mountains the Phoenix valley is breathtaking. It was impressive, dazzling, genuinely magnificent.

I do have to add, even with my golfer's handicap, the beauty of the course, the experience is so grand don't shy away from the challenge. Step into the pro shop and sign up for a few lessons and enjoy one of the most spectacular classic desert golf courses in the world. And return home with the bragging rights of a champion!

For more information: http://www.quinterogolf.com

Pristine course images courtesy of Quintero Golf Club and used with permission.

Other images by Janet Walker.

 

Haute Tease

  • Massive Winter Storm Jonas Expected to Dump Historic Snow Along East Coast Corridor

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    A perfectly formed Nor'Easter is expected to pummel the East Coast with blizzard conditions, record breaking snowfalls, and whipping winds, subzero temperatures, whiteouts, and icy roads are expected as the weather gradually worsens throughout Friday into the weekend.

     
  • Science News:The 25 Biggest Earthquakes Ever Recorded

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Contrary to popular belief, floods and droughts kill more Americans than hurricanes or earthquakes. Globally, however, earthquakes comprise some of the deadliest natural disasters in history.  

  • Money News Asia: SESAMi Gives Singapore Businesses a Trade Finance Boost

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    SESAMi, South‐East Asia’s largest e‐procurement platform, touches the lives of over 15,000 small businesses and 5,000 large buyers around the globe each year. The firm processed SGD 1.8 billion worth of e‐invoices in the last 12 months, a figure that has grown steadily 14% year‐on‐year since its inception in September 1999.

     
  • Channing Tatum Returns To Launch “Team Oscar®”

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    LOS ANGELES, CA – Channing Tatum, Oscar producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, and the Academy today launched "Team Oscar" by inviting the next generation of filmmakers to create a short video and vie for the opportunity to appear onstage during the live Oscar broadcast.  Winners will deliver Oscar statuettes to celebrity presenters at the 87th Academy Awards® on Oscar Sunday, February 22, 2015, live on ABC.

     
  • Money News: Paris Terrorist Attack Sends Investor Confidence Plummeting; Dow, European Markets Close Down, Asian Up

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Charlie Hebdo Terrorist Attacks sent reverberations throughout the world as investors remained shaken and concerned. The December Jobs Report, released from The Bureau of Labor Statistics, heralding another success for the Obama Administration couldn't save the Dow Jones Industrial Market from sustaining heavy losses.

     
  • The Boulders Resort and Golden Door Spa - Luxurious, Soothing, Carefree Comfort

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Boulders Resort and Golden Door Spa, a Waldorf Astoria Property, in Carefree, Arizona, provides carefree comfort and luxurious accommodations in the foothills of the Sonoran Desert.

     
  • State Department Issues Worldwide Travel Alert; Canada Slows Syrian Immigration

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The State Department issued a worldwide travel alert for U.S. citizens today, citing increased threats from terrorist groups such as the Islamic State Fighters, ISIS/ISIL, al-Qa'ida, Boko Haram and Wilayat Sinai in the wake of the Paris Terrorist Attacks.

     
  • Antelope Audio Zodiac Platinum DSD DAC: Combining Evolutionary and Revolutionary Innovations for a Perfected Listening Experience

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Las Vegas, NV, January 8, 2014 — Yesterday at the Consumer Electronics Show, leading digital audio manufacturer Antelope Audio [CES: Venetian, suite 29-227] unveiled its highly anticipated Zodiac Platinum DSD DAC/headphone amplifier. With its revolutionary DSD upsampling capabilities and unique 10 MHz clocking input, the Zodiac Platinum helps listeners realize unprecedented detail and transparency, enabling them to get closer than ever before to original studio recordings.

Crime

  • Drive-By Shooting Kills Seven

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Gun fire erupted in the coastal community of Isla Vista, near UC Santa Barbara, in a drive-by shooting that left seven dead and another seven injured in what police are calling a premeditated attack by a disgruntled student.

     
  • UPDATE: Chicago’s Bloody Christmas Weekend Thankfully Ends; 2016 Expected to Be Third Highest

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Chicago’s bloody rampage continued Monday with a sharp spike in shootings and with five days before New Year’s Eve the 61 shootings, 50 wounded and 11 homicides, over the three-day holiday weekend bring the 2016 total to 785 homicides.

     
  • Jealousy Alleged Motive in Houston Family Massacre

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    A jealous former lover entered the Houston suburb home of his former girlfriend, through an unlocked window Saturday night, and proceeded to restrain and systemically execute every member of the family, including his own biological son.

     
  • Theater Shooter Charged; Prosecutor Plans Two Fold Strategy

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Accused theater shooter James Holmes was officially charged for the crimes committed during the midnight screening of the Warner Bros film, "The Dark Knight Rises."

     
  • Guilty Verdict Long Overdue in Etan Patz Murder

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    A Manhattan jury deliberated nine days before it rendered a guilty verdict in the 40-year-old kidnapping and murder of eight-year-old Etan Patz who disappeared in 1979 as he walked to school in New York City.

     
  • Double Homicide Suspect Caught on Camera; Manhunt Widens

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The main suspect in the murders of Liberty German and Abigail Williams, the two Indiana teens killed while hiking on Delphi Historic Trail, has been identified and his image was captured on park surveillance.

     
  • Five Dallas Police Officers Dead; Seven Others Injured in Peace March Ambush

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Five Dallas Police Officers have died and seven others injured in an ambush as a protest over the recurring use of excessive and deadly force against unarmed African Americans turned violent leaving a city and nation stunned.

     
  • Murder Suspect James DiMaggio Killed in FBI Shootout

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    James Lee DiMaggio, the man suspected of kidnapping Hannah Anderson and murdering her mother and brother has been killed in a shootout with law enforcement officers in the Cascade Mountains of Idaho.

Auto, Yachts, Jets, Real Estate

  • Toronto Mansion of former Newspaper Magnet Conrad Black Set For Auction

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    A grand and coveted historic Canadian mansion, privately located in Toronto's premier Bridle Path enclave, just 15 minutes outside of downtown Toronto, will be offered for sale at auction after 65 years of family lineage.

     
  • Mystery Buyer, In Dramatic Fashion, Purchases Beverly Hills Mansion of Late Steamy Queen of Romance Novelist Jackie Collins

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Queen of Hollywood romance, steamy sex and scandal novels, author Jackie Collins, took her readers to Hollywood behind the scenes, even if fictionalized. Though born and raised in London, Jackie followed her older sister, actress Joan Collins, to Tinseltown in the 1960s.

     
  • Breathtaking Malibu Beachfront Property Hits Market

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    A stunning Malibu beachfront four bedroom triplex situated in the coveted Malibu Colony Cove Community, with brilliant, dramatic Pacific Ocean views as well as direct beach access, has recently hit the market.

     
  • Playboy Mansion Sells to Neighbor; Allows Bunny Patriarch Lifetime Living

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Hugh Hefner sold his Holmby Hills Mansion for a cool $100Million, half of the original listing price, to his neighbor, Daren Metropoulos, the owner of Hostess Snack Foods. The Playboy Enterprises founder will live out his days dolling out $1M annually for expenses.

     
  • Los Feliz Property of Drake Bell Hits The Market

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Los Feliz home of actor and singer Drake Bell, better known for his recent gigs in "Superhero Movie" and "The Ultimate Spider Man," who lost the property during bankruptcy proceedings, has hit the market at just over 1.5million.

     
  • Songstress Taylor Swift Buys Samuel Goldwyn Mansion

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Taylor Swift, one of the world's wealthiest celebrities with estimated career earnings approaching $800 million, and is now putting down deep roots in Hollywood society with the purchase and renovation of the Samuel Goldwyn Mansion.

     
  • Keith Richards and Patti Hansen Put Laurel Canyon Home on The Market

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Laurel Canyon was ground zero for the birth of 1960’s and 70’s rock and roll with everyone, who was anyone, living there making hippie music in the canyon with residents such as Jim Morrison, Joni Mitchell, Frank Zappa and Keith Richards.