Here’s some facts to chew on. There are over 16,000 golf courses in the U.S., out of which 959 are in New York. About 13% are more or less eco-friendly, while the rest are guzzling water and making the surrounding environment toxic with fertilizers and destruction of natural habitats.
What we’re going to do here is find some truly green golf resorts in New York, so you can enjoy guilt-free luxury golf vacations.
To do this, I had to cross-tabulate a list of New York’s golf resorts against Audubon International’s list of certified sanctuaries. FYI, Audubon International certifies golf courses that meet required standards for protecting water quality, conserving natural resources, and providing wildlife habitats.
There are a total of 27 New York area golf courses in Audubon’s list, and out of these, 5 are part and parcel of a resort type facility, while the rest are stand-alone golf courses. 3 of these 5 resort courses are located in the same resort. Which basically leaves us with a grand total of three eco-friendly golf resorts in New York.
Turning Stone Resort & Casino, Verona, NY (www.turningstone.com/): This 1200 acre resort in the Mohawk Valley has 3 out of its 5 championship golf courses – The Shenendoah, Sandstone Hollow, and the Kaluhyat Course – listed by Audubon. The resort has been listed in GolfWeek’s ‘Best resort Courses’, and has been home to a PGA tour.
Off the course, this 4 diamond resort has diverse accomodations to suit your taste including a cozy lodge, a hotel, and an RV Park. The resort also offers a worldclass spa named Skana, fine restaurants with gourmet dining and other casual dining options, a wide variety of entertainment facilities featuring celebrity performances, and a nighclub and casino.
Mohonk Mountain House, New Paltz, NY (www.mohonk.com/): Soon to be a 140 years old, this enchanting lakeside Victorian castle resort in the Hudson Valley offers a 107 year old landmark course with a Scottish architectural influence with sweeping views of the surrounding valleys. Listed by Audubon as a cooperative sanctuary.
In addition to the golfing, the resort offers spa facilities, ice skating, boating and fishing, cross country skiing, fly fishing, hiking and walking trails, rock climbing, mountain biking, snowshoeing, and other outdoorsy activities.
Otesaga Resort Hotel, Cooperstown, NY (www.otesaga.com/): A 100 year old facade which looks kinda like a federal building from the outside, this resort hotel stretches across the lakefront on the southern shore of Lake Otsego, and is home to the Championship Leatherstocking golf course, designed in 1909 by Devereux Emmet, and considered to be one of the most challenging, and scenic, courses in the East. Also a certified Audubon cooperative sanctuary.
Resort offers lake and pool swimming, canoe rentals, salmon and trout fishing, and group skeet shooting expeditions. City slickers have hunting and fishing guides on hand for assistance. Excellent place for some down time with a great view of the lake from the veranda.