Walt Disney World Golf: 4 Jewels in the Middle of the Magic
Guest post courtesy of Marc Schwartz, Walt Disney World Golf
If it has been some time since you have played or considered playing at Walt Disney World® Golf, operated by Arnold Palmer Golf Management, we would like to reintroduce you to the “Happiest Place on TURF!” In August of 2011, Arnold Palmer Golf Management took over the management and operations of the Walt Disney World® Golf courses and facilities under a 20-year partnership. We are proud of the many accomplishments that we have made in the years since then at each of our four golf courses: Disney’s Palm, Disney’s Magnolia, Disney’s Lake Buena Vista and Disney’s Oak Trail. All are now considered as some of the top golf courses in Orlando.
Since the Walt Disney World® Golf courses opened for play in 1971, they have always been available to both Walt Disney World® Resort guests and day guests. Day guests are those who are not staying at a Walt Disney World® Resort hotel, whether they are residents of the Orlando area or guests vacationing in the area but staying elsewhere.
Unfortunately, some of the misconceptions that we find prevalent are the beliefs that the golf courses and practice facilities are reserved for the use of Walt Disney World® Resort guests only, that they are substantially more expensive than other quality golf facilities in the Orlando area and that you are required to pay for parking. The good news is that NONE of these are true!
Walt Disney World® Resort guests and day guests do have access to longer advance tee time reservation windows than some of our other discounted rate offers, as well as programs targeted specifically to meet their vacation planning needs, like our Golf getaway packages.
However, over the years we have also strengthened our efforts to embrace our fellow Orlando area residents by developing discounts and programs specifically for them. For example, Orlando area residents can make tee time reservations up to 14 days in advance and take advantage of discounts on green fees that are up to 40% below the fees paid by Walt Disney World® Resort guests.
There are additional discounts available for twilight tee times, Walt Disney World® Resort Annual Passholders, Disney Vacation Club members, active duty military, seniors (ages 60+) and juniors (ages under 18).
We also offer our Sunrise 9 and Sunset 9 programs for those who wish to start their day early or finish in the evening before dusk with a quick 9-holes of play. Each program includes cart, light food and beverage.
In recent years we have enhanced all of our golf instruction programs and introduced our Players Club Membership Program, specifically for Orlando area residents. We liken the program to a gym membership for your golf game. For a low $29 monthly fee, members gain access to unlimited driving range access, complimentary daily golf clinics taught by Michael Schlager—our PGA Director of Instruction—and further discounted fees to play our four golf courses. Access to the Players Club and Orlando area resident rates are exclusively for those living within any of the seven Central Florida counties (Orange, Osceola, Lake, Polk, Volusia, Seminole, and Brevard). Each additional household member pays only $19 per month, and for committing to an annual membership, you gain one month of complimentary membership!
With an added focus on providing instructional and playing opportunities for all junior golfers, a few years ago we began offering a very successful series of single and multi-day golf camps for golfers ages 7 to 17. These camps, which are offered at various times throughout the year, include personalized instruction with qualified PGA members, food and beverage, as well as games and prizes for the participants. In addition, our family-friendly Disney’s Oak Trail golf course, a 9-hole walking course specifically designed for junior and novice play, was recognized in 2016 as a “Top 10 Golf Course in Florida” for junior and beginner golfers by GolfAdvisor.com, a widely respected golf community site.
To enhance our communications with all of our guests, we created the Walt Disney World® Golf eClub, which offers our guests the opportunity to sign up for geographically targeted communications by e-mail, including advanced notifications of weekly golf specials and events, before they are announced to the general public. We also created a new Walt Disney World® Golf Facebook page and the Walt Disney World® Golf blog to enable our guests to stay up to date with the latest news from Walt Disney World® Golf and the sport of golf in general.
We are most proud of the significant investments we’ve made in our golf courses in recent years, by renovating Disney’s Palm, Disney’s Magnolia, and Disney’s Oak Trail courses. We have also enhanced our food and beverage offerings, including the introduction this year of Disney character-inspired roving refreshment carts on the courses. We have many more plans for the years ahead, including updates to Disney’s Lake Buena Vista golf course, as we continue to raise the bar on what it means to experience Walt Disney World® Golf.