Played yesterday at Cowboys Golf Club in Grapevine, TX (near DFW airport). In case you're wondering: yes, those Cowboys. This is a Jerry Jones venture that's been in place since 2001 and markets itself as the world's only NFL themed golf venue. Although it's been around for a while this was my first chance to visit. Thought I'd pass along some impressions
They are trying to deliver an ultra-premium experience at an ultra-premium price. Normal prime time (no pun intended) rates are $185, but this includes unlimited golf, cart fees (walking isn't really an option here), unlimited range balls and all food and non-alcoholic beverages. The only additional costs are for alcohol, merchandise in the pro shop or tips. When you pay, they give you a lapel pin that serves as your "ticket" for the day. I was able to get on use a promotional rate of $99, which I thought was great.
Other than at select times, they don't necessarily club you over the head with the whole Dallas Cowboys thing. As you drive up to the bag drop, they are playing replays of old Cowboys game broadcasts over the sound system (but only in that outside area). Also all of the golf carts have the name of a famous Cowboys player on the side. I got a hall-of-famer from the '70s era.
I had an early lunch (club sandwich) and then a hot dog at the turn. The jalapeño sausage dogs are legendary, but sadly they were out. Overall I thought the food was really great for what it was.
The course itself is amazing and in really fantastic shape. I was shocked at the amount of elevation change on the property. Generally courses in this area tend toward flattish. Not this one. Very scenic with lots of trees and hazards. I don't know if you can tell from this picture, but the drop from the 4th tee to the fairway has to be at least 80 feet. And yes, they do have the Cowboys star painted in the middle of that fairway.
The greens are Bermuda with some grain attendant to that strain. But they were in fantastic shape and were the fastest Bermuda greens I've ever played. Additionally, the greens are by and large very difficult. Very undulated. Several are comprised of multiple mini-greens. My main complaint with the course yesterday was the greens. I won't completely judge it on one round but, when you combined the difficulty of the greens, some questionable pin placements, about 14 stimp speeds and toss in a 25+ mph wind, things got a bit cartoonish. I had a downhill 35 footer that I knew would be impossible to stop. I literally just started the ball rolling. When it stopped rolling I had a 20 footer coming back. One guy in my group had a 20 footer up a hill that he died just short of the cup. A gust of wind came up and blew the ball 6 feet back down toward him. Yes, the putt came backwards. But again, conditions were tough and the guys in my group who play there regularly seemed just as vexed as I was, so I probably caught them on a bad day.
Other than that one issue, I thought that the course and the whole experience were really first rate. All the extras you'd expect...club service at the end with iced eucalyptus face towels, hot cart girls, etc. At $185 a round, I won't be a regular but it was a really nice day and if I can get the $99 rate again I'll certainly do it.