We all have that one old pair of golf shoes that are our favorites. They are not your new pair of high tech spikes saved for that special occasion, they are the ones you wear when you are going out to play your favorite local track with your best buddies and you want comfort and reliability. I think of the Haven Golf Course in Green Valley in much the same way… it just feels good to play here. There is nothing pretentious about the Haven. The clubhouse and golf shop are one of those places where you can get just what you need, whether
that be a great cheeseburger and cold beer or a sleeve of new balls to take out on the course, and neither are going to cost you an arm and a leg. You can walk into the Overpar Grill and chances are you are going to see someone you know and if not you will know someone soon enough…just join any of the lively debates, golf talk only please!
Spend some time when you are there and find Greg Chesney, General Manager for The Haven. Greg’s philosophy for running the golf course is “inclusive, not exclusive”. That means a lot when you think about it. He wants you to play golf at The Haven and wants you to feel comfortable when doing so. There is something for everyone here. The Haven offers one of the largest Jr. Golf programs in Southern AZ, featuring many local golf pros who want to see kids get something out of the game and not just offering babysitting services. The Haven is also very women friendly; from some new forward tees, to the popular nine and wine outings, to the instruction of Marvol Barnard chosen as one of the top 50 LPGA instructors. If you just want to work on your short game or maybe only have a short amount of time, tee it up on the Tortuga nine hole executive course… a little golf and a little exercise since it is walking only.
But for most who come here, it is for the 18 hole championship golf course. Opened in 1961 as the original golf course in Green Valley it has certainly matured well. Like that comfortable pair of golf shoes the course is easy to use; nothing too tricky, no forced carries, flat lies for the most part, large receptive greens, tee boxes for all handicaps, and wide forgiving fairways. Don’t be fooled by your mind’s eye when looking down the fairway. Many of the cart paths run down the middle, making you think the landing area is smaller than what it is because you want to think the path is on one side or the other. This is actually a great feature, not only will you sometimes get a little extra out of that cart path bounce, but you are always close to your ball (what a blessing that is just after overseeding when this and most courses are cart path only). While there might not be too much trouble at first glance, you still have to put the ball in the right position to score well. Large overhanging trees and well placed bunkers can grab any errant shot and leave you looking at bogey or worse. The greens, while they appear relatively benign are very subtle in their breaks; you have to play them often to get to know them. As Greg tells me, he and many others who have been playing here a long time still can’t figure them out. In my opinion, that is what makes for great greens, a certain mysterious quality about them.
The condition of the golf course is good all year long. In today’s world of struggling courses, The Haven maintains the course to attract players, not send them away complaining. Inclusive of a great experience and exclusive of being overpriced. Grab your favorite golf shoes and slip onto the Haven, you won’t regret it.