Kierland Golf Club is a part of the Westin Kierland Resort & Spa and the course is managed by Troon Golf – one of the best golf management companies with a stable of top tier courses throughout the United States. Kierland has 27 outstanding holes of emerald green fairways carved out of the desert and landscaped with a variety of trees and colorful desert fauna. Scott Miller designed each of the three nine hole courses to take advantage of the terrain and to provide golfers with a memorable and fair yet challenging round of golf. When you play Kierland, you’ll find near perfect conditions, manageable desert carries, elevation changes, wide forgiving fairways, dog legs, and over 300 bunkers, plus lakes, dry desert washes, strands of desert trees and natural desert areas.
When we played, all three courses were still in transition from with winter to summer but the fairways and roughs were lush and green and the greens were near perfect. Each of the nines hole layouts – Mesquite, Acacia, and Ironwood – are named for the trees that line the fairways and each nine plays with a diverse style and has it’s own personality created by the differences in terrain and landscaping. Kierland features a few forced carries but none you won’t be able to master. To create the tall mounds, rolling fairways, elevation changes of up to 75 feet, and the lakes, over 1.3 million cubic yards of dirt were bulldozed. Our favorite of the three nines was Acacia – here is a link to the review of Mesquite and the review of Acacia.
Kierland is home to the Labauve Golf Academy which offers a state-of-the-art teaching and practice facility as well as a first-class golf shop. And you won’t believe this – each cart has an air conditioning system to keep you cool during the 110 degree heat spells! Almost as good, the outdoor driving range has an air-conditioned canopy system to keep you cool during practice sessions!
The Ironwood 9 is similar to Mesquite in that the holes are mostly what you see is what you get. This nine has a challenging 200 yard par three requiring a big carry over a desert waste area, a couple dog legs (a good risk reward opportunity on #6 to go for it and try to carry the desert, trees, and bunkers to shorten this 412 yard par 4), and somewhat narrower fairways. #9 is fantastic – a 495 yard par 5 with a small narrow lake following the fairway all the way to and just past the green – a perfect hole to end a fun round. Off the 9th tee box you have a fairly wide open landing zone, but then the fairway narrows on its way to the green and you need to miss some large bunkers on the left, right, and middle of the fairway on your second shot.
Ironwood fairways are also lined with lots of mounds, trees, desert fauna, and gently rolling terrain. The greens are large with slope and some undulation. When we played the greens were generally easy to read, smooth, and about average speed – about an 8 on the Stint meter. The slope and rating for Ironwood is based on playing the Ironwood Acacia nines.
We spent 6 days in Scottdale and played 150 holes, went hot air ballooning, kayaking, off-road jeeping, and lots more fun things.