When we made the decision to go to British Columbia and had an extra day on our journey back to Seattle, we decided to find another course and resort to write about.
“I know a resort just over the border in Washington,” said John Edwards, a golf writer and publisher from Denver who had visited there in the 1990’s. “It is on the site of a former huge salmon cannery and right on the water. It has two golf courses, and it is on our way,” said Edwards who was driving us back to Seattle.
Literally ten minutes after we crossed the border we were at the resort. As we drove out to the peninsula where the resort is located we passed one of their two golf courses and it looked very pretty. When we saw the resort, we were impressed by its size and beauty.
Semiahmoo has over two hundred rooms and sits right on Semiahmoo Bay that the salmon fishermen used to bring their catch to the cannery. The sunsets over the bay are spectacular and most all the guests were outside watching the sun go down that evening.
We were given a tour of the property the next morning. They have two restaurants including an oyster bar, an excellent spa and fitness center, an indoor/outdoor pool that is heated all year, tennis courts, nature trails, and a huge beachfront area offering many lawn games. There are bicycles to rent, bird watching, whale watching and charter fishing boats and much more.
“We draw most of our business from the Seattle area (that is about two hours away), but we get visitors from all over the world,” said our host and tour guide.
We only had enough time to play one course—Semiahmoo Golf & Country Club that is about a mile from the resort. Designed by Arnold Palmer it is tree-lined course that can play to over 7,000 yards, but you will enjoy it much more from a shorter tee.
“The course is really a challenge from 150 yards in on most of the holes,” said a member as we were getting information for the story. The green are undulating and water comes into play on five holes. Our favorites were 11 and 12. Eleven is a dogleg right par 4 that wraps around a pond. The green is right next to the pond, so be careful with your second shot. The 12th is a par 3 that plays back over that pond.
On our way out the next morning we stopped at Loomis Trail Golf Club, the second course owned by the resort. It is a members’ course and resort guests play one or the other course every other day.
Loomis Trail features a huge clubhouse that looks like a hotel. Actually it was a hotel when Japanese entrepreneurs owned the course in the 1990’s. There is a canal system that runs throughout the course, but it is much more open than the Palmer course.
“People say that they score better on Loomis Trail than they do on Semiahmoo,” said the pro in the golf shop.
Life is strange. We would never have found this hidden gem if John Edwards had not visited 20 years ago. If you are ever in the northwestern part Washington, you will really enjoy this resort. To get more information you can visit www,semiahmoo.com or call 360-318-2000.
Bruce Vittner is a member of the Golf Writers Assn. of America and the Golf Travel Writers of America and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org