Winter '24 - Escape to Cabo, SNGA Winners & More

Tuesday, October 10, 2023

Reflection Bay - Golf and dining at Lake Las Vegas

Reflection Bay Golf Club

Golf and dining at Lake Las Vegas

Story by Bill Bowman

 

Reflection Bay Golf Club is located at Lake Las Vegas, just 30 minutes from the famed Las Vegas Strip. The course, designed by Jack Nicklaus, opened in 1998.

Forgive Eric Dutt if he is all smiles seeing golfers on the practice facility, fairways, and greens at Reflection Bay Golf Club. After all, it will have been a total of about 4-1/2 months between tee times on the course since they shut down on May 1 for all of the greens to be resodded. “It was tough being closed for that long,” says Dutt, manager of operations at Reflection Bay. “Any time you do a shutdown you impact a lot of things—employees, cash flow, golfers, and more. But the golf course is at an age where those renovations were necessary.”

Despite the length of the shutdown, Dutt says there were no problems with the changeover to Paspalum turf on the greens. The project saw 130,000-135,000-square-feet of new turf put in place. “The whole process went according to plan and budget,” he says of the $2 million project. “I went around the golf course and I’m very pleased with how the greens look. We’ve had the sod down for about eight weeks (as of this writing in early August) and it has knitted in very well. We’re taking it down to the heights we want and we’ll get to the heights we are targeting for play.”

There’s also the money savings the course will see. Between not overseeding and going to the Paspalum, they are going to be saving 28-32 million of gallons of water a year.

The shutdown gave the staff time to catch up on a few other projects both on and off the golf course. The greens were the big of the overall workload. “But we also had a couple of major drainage projects that needed to be done. We removed some dead mesquite trees around the course, and we’re doing work on greenside bunkers. We have a new rental fleet of carts coming in and new rental clubs. There’s more in the works but all of the upgrades we’ve made during this shutdown are going to make the course that much better for golfers." 

Dutt added that he is most impressed with the greens and what they have to offer…both to players and to the staff. The big considerations were the summer heat and the water quality, which is why they chose Paspalum. “The greens will look more consistent and they are very resilient to ball marks, and that’s important especially in the summer. In the summer you have to keep so much water on the greens that the ball marks were atrocious. We’re anxious to see how they will look now.”

Dutt says one of the staff members, Craig Barlow, the director of golf, played on the PGA TOUR and has experience on Paspalum greens. “Craig played four TOUR events with Paspalum greens, including in Mexico and the Caribbean. He says he was impressed and that Paspalum would work well for us. And after what I’ve seen so far, it’s going to be a great fit.”

As for what players can expect with the new greens, they should use one rule of thumb around the greens.

They are going to need to get the ball on the green quicker, rather than flying the ball to the hole because the greens won’t be as fast as in the past. The speed is expected to be about 10 on the stimpmeter. “We can get them up to an 11 or so, but 10 is going to be good for our guests.”

The new greens will also give players new looks on the greens than they may have seen in the past. “This will open up more hole locations for me on some of the greens,” Dutt says. “It’s just going add variety when it comes to pin placements and they will be more consistent for everyone.”

All of those projects will add up to a revamped course that Dutt says he hopes will impress players. His expectations for the overall operation has gone up. They spent a lot of money on the course, the clubhouse, and the parking lot. “We just want people to come out and see all the changes.”

In the end, the goals are simple: “We are just trying to get better to get repeat customers,” Dutt says. “We want to provide a great experience at a fair price. We want people to say they had a great time and come back two or three times a year.”

 

Reflection Bay Golf Club

75 Montelago Blvd

Henderson

702-740-4653

www.reflectionbaygolf.com

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