The Wynn Golf Club along the Las Vegas Strip is getting a second chance.
The polarizing 7,042-yard course was closed in December of 2017 to make way for the Wynn Paradise Park, a $1.5-billion development with a 400,000-square-foot convention center and three new hotel towers surrounding a 38-acre lagoon. That ambitious project has been scaled back, according to the Las Vegas Journal Review, leaving room to revive most of the original Tom Fazio routing.
Deanna Pettit-Irestone, the executive director of public relations at Wynn, declined to provide any details by email other than to "confirm what was mentioned in our recent earnings call—the golf course will open around the time of our new convention space, Q1 2020."
Turns out, the Wynn needed golf more than management thought. The newspaper article indicated that "the company lost $10 million to $15 million of domestic casino business from people coming in for golf trips who decided to go elsewhere."
“We actually went back and re-engaged Tom Fazio, who was the original designer of our golf course, to come in and take a look at the couple holes that were disrupted by this 400,000-square-foot convention center and see if we can design a new 18-hole golf course connected to Wynn and Encore and have that back in action before our convention center opens,” Wynn Resorts Ltd. CEO Matt Maddox was quoted as saying on the earnings call.
The rebirth brings golf back to a site that has been green with fairways for more than six decades. The old Desert Inn Golf Club opened in 1952. The mostly flat, featureless course hosted more than 35 professional tournaments before it was blown up in 2001 to make way for Steve Wynn's twin hotel towers, Wynn and Encore, and the Wynn Golf Club. The Fazio design that debuted in 2005 became a symbol of Vegas excess with its massive waterfall behind the 18th green and its $500 green fee, which was one of the most expensive in golf. As pretentious as it was with all the unnatural shaping and landscaping more fit for North Carolina than Nevada, I always enjoyed my rounds at Wynn.
If I were a betting man, I'd wager that Fazio's newest effort will offer a similar experience - a high-ticket round of caddies and immaculate conditions for high rollers and big spenders. Money always talks in Vegas, right?
Are you happy the Wynn is coming back? Will you play it? Why or why not? Or maybe you were happy that golf had one less pricy course selling unrealistic standards for the game? Let us know in the comments below.