My wife and I wanted to go to a golf resort in middle of March not too far from our home in New York. My wife wanted to stay at a luxurious hotel and I wanted to play at a nice golf course. We both wanted ideal weather conditions. Florida seemed like a perfect destination, but it was difficult to find an ideal resort to meet our demands.
According to Golf Digest, the best golf resort in Florida is the Ritz Carlton in Key Biscayne (#27 in North America). We have stayed there before. The hotel is nice, but sub-par for a Ritz Carlton, with horrible food at the main restaurant. And THERE IS NO GOLF COURSE. Crandon Park golf course is nearby, but it's a county owned course. It's scenic and the layout is good, but crowded with spotty conditions. You don't get the feeling you are playing at a nice resort.
We stayed at the Breakers in Palm Beach with the family. The hotel was fantastic and the kids loved it. But the golf course on the premises is a glorified pitch and putt. The second course owned by the hotel is 10 miles away (30 minute drive through traffic). It's a decent course (not great), and not worth the drive.
Only other resort we've stayed in Florida was Bay Hill. The course is decent and hotel is nice, but certainly not outstanding. It was nice to run into Arnold Palmer (who plays there regularly), but we are not planning to go back.
We've heard mediocre reviews of Doral (Miami) from our friends, so we decided to try Ritz Carlton Golf Resort in Naples.
The hotel was nice, probably better than the Ritz Carlton in Key Biscayne, but not as nice as the Breakers, and definitely not as luxurious as the Ritz Carlton beach resort in Naples. However, it was considerably cheaper to stay at the golf resort than the beach resort, and there's a shuttle connecting the two resorts. My wife thought the spa at the beach resort was fantastic, and we had a nice dinner at the Grill restaurant at the beach resort. The room and service at the golf resort was very good. The only negative was the smell. The entire lobby area was inundated with perfume that made me feel ill.
There are two golf courses at the Naples resort. Both are not too crowded, with our rounds lasting about 4 hours, even after being paired with another couple. The service is good, and definitely feels like a nice resort. The layout of the course is decent. There is no rough (similar to Augusta), which was a nice change from what we are used to. The fairway and tee boxes were in good conditions. However, the greens were not in good shape, with many looking like a jigsaw puzzle, interlaced with new sod and large areas of dead or diseased grass. We were hoping for better.
In our experience, the Ritz Carlton Golf Resort is probably the best golf resort in Florida. But it's probably not saying much.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Surround yourself with the rolling green vistas of North America's premier golf setting. The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort, Naples boasts two Greg Norman-designed courses that will satisfy even the most discerning player’s expectations. Challenge yourself on the green, then retreat to unrivaled luxury of Florida’s top-rated golf resort hotel. The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort, Naples is a AAA Five-Diamond, Mobil Four-Star Mediterranean-style sanctuary that offers 295 well-appointed guest rooms, including 31 club rooms, 40 suites and a Presidential Suite, as well as three exceptional dining establishments, 12 unique, spacious meeting rooms, the Tiburon Golf Course and a large pool area with poolside service. Guests at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort, Naples are also encouraged to enjoy access to the services and amenities at the neighboring Ritz-Carlton, Naples beach resort via a complimentary shuttle service between the resorts. Only three miles away, The Ritz-Carlton, Naples beach resort boast dazzling views of the Gulf of Mexico, warm golden sunsets, three miles of pristine beach, seven unique restaurants and a world-class spa. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort, Naples Hotel Naples
- Ritz Carlton Hotel Naples
- Ritz Naples
- Ritz-Carlton Naples
- Naples Ritz-Carlton
- The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort, Naples Florida