By Bill Bauer
In the Southeastern U.S., it’s not hard to find and play some great golf courses, stay in some classy hotels, and dine in some upscale restaurants. That being said, it’s less common to find all three experiences in one location that are also open to the public. For a grownup golfing getaway, The Ballantyne in Charlotte, North Carolina, is like hitting the trifecta: It’s a luxurious destination with outstanding accommodations and amenities, exquisite dining, and superb golf.
Plan to check in at three o’clock and let the valet park your car so you can take full advantage of your time on the property—with options like afternoon tea, tennis, indoor and outdoor pools, plus even a free shuttle to locations within a mile (though there’s no need to leave the Forbes Four-Star and AAA Four-Diamond award-winning Marriott).
The Golf Club
Golf Digest has awarded the Golf Club at Ballantyne a 4.5-star rating for good reason: it’s impeccably maintained, has a championship layout, and is, in a word, spectacular. Occupying 200 acres of former farmland, the greens are surrounded by multi-story corporate buildings and of course, The Ballantyne.
Tree-lined Bermuda fairways and well-landscaped natural areas lay in stark contrast to the modern edifices, harmlessly hovering above and around the course. A low-pitched, steady hum of traffic blends nicely with the shrill echoes of nature’s inhabitants. It’s a journey through an incomparable setting of testy par 4s, eye-catching par 3s, and par 5s that invite you to get there in two, that ends when you approach the par 4 18th, Ballantyne’s signature hole.
Standing on the elevated tee, all that typifies Ballantyne is before you. The meandering creek returns from the left and cuts across the fairway below. An elongated bunker lines an equally long lake along the right and juts out into the fairway; three circular bunkers protect each side of the two-tiered green. The majestic hotel, spa, restaurant, and golf shop surround the putting surface. It is a stunning sight, as well as a very playable hole, and a great finish to a day on the golf course. The Golf Club is also home to Ballantyne Golf Academy, North Carolina’s only Golf Channel Academy.
The Golf Club at Ballantyne is no mere golf course, it’s a destination. It will provide a superb round of championship golf. To experience all this place has to offer, plan to stay a night or two.
Take your pick among various lodging options:
The Ballantyne Hotel borders the 18th green. Deluxe rooms overlook Ballantyne Village while Grand Deluxe rooms face the golf course; suites are also available. All guestrooms are well-appointed with plush bedding, ten-foot ceilings, picture windows, a 55-inch TV, and a mini-bar. Pull a robe and slippers out of the closet before heading into the spacious marble garden bath with seamless glass showers.
The Lodge offers 35 rooms of rustic elegance. A more casual and private setting one block from the Ballantyne Hotel, it’s adjacent to the 1st fairway. Many rooms have private balconies, jetted tubs and walk-in showers, and also come with a leather sofa and accent chairs. A fitness center, pool tables, business area, and a stone patio plus fire pit are on site plus guests have access to all the Ballantyne amenities. The Lodge is reserved for groups with a ten room minimum.
The Cottage is one block from the Hotel near the golf course’s 1st tee. A home away from home it boasts four king bedrooms each with a private bath, full kitchen, living room, and dining room. All the Ballantyne amenities are available for guests at The Cottage.
The Gallery Restaurant serves artfully presented, regionally-inspired cuisine influenced by local and seasonal ingredients. Leading the resort’s food and beverage team is Executive Chef Ivo Sandrea who came on board in June, 2019. “We are thrilled to welcome Chef Ivo Sandrea to helm The Ballantyne’s culinary team and efforts,” said Christophe Le Chatton, general manager. “With his wealth of experience in the industry, we are confident in his ability to lead our food & beverage team and impress our guests with his vast culinary talents.” The Gallery also features a full bar bar with an unrivaled single malt Scotch and whiskey collection, including exclusive bourbons.
The Spa is a serene, relaxing setting with a full service menu of available treatments plus a salon.
Two indoor pools and one seasonal outdoor pool lure swimmers to relax or swim against the current. Non-swimmers might still enjoy the poolside lounge and bar. The fitness center boasts cardio and strength-training equipment, plus 3.5 miles of walking and biking trails, with complimentary bicycles. Two lighted tennis courts are also available.
The Ballantyne, A Luxury Collection Hotel, Charlotte
10000 Ballantyne Commons Parkway
Charlotte NC 28277
– Photos courtesy The Ballantyne, A Luxury Hotel, Charlotte
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