Golf Resurgence Boosts Tribal Casinos: Dominate Top 50 Casino Golf Courses List


In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, golf has seen a resurgence in popularity. The open-air nature of the sport has meant it has thrived throughout the ravages of the coronavirus, with interest remaining robust as the pandemic gradually recedes.

Indeed, many vacation-goers value a good golf course as one of their key amenities, and both commercial and tribal casinos have accordingly channeled substantial resources into the provision of first-rate, championship standard courses at their locations.

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The annual listing of the Top 50 Casino Golf Courses in the United States by Golfweek has been unveiled, with tribal casinos securing their standing as industry frontrunners. In fact, out of the Top 50 Casino Golf Courses, as stated in a tally by, 33 are owned and/or run by tribal businesses. Five of the top ten are included: third place went to Yocha Dehe at Cache Creek Casino in California, We-Ko-Pa Golf Club’s Saguaro course at the We-Jo-Pa Casino Resort in Arizona was sixth, followed by The Wilderness at Fortune Bay in Minnesota and Turning Stone’s Atunyote Golf Course in New York, with Barona Creek Golf Club at the Barona Resort & Casino in California coming in tenth.

The esteemed Shadow Creek in Las Vegas, owned and operated by MGM Resorts, took the lead but requires more than a booking at an MGM Resort. Primarily set aside for their high rollers, celebrities, and regular guests, it occasionally extends opportunities to other resort guests providing they are prepared to foot the bill. It currently costs a staggering $4,000 for a foursome, including limousine transport to and from the location. However, if you’re willing to visit during their off-peak hours, rates commence from $750 per player.

MGM’s sister course, Fallen Oak in Mississippi, echoes Shadow Creek’s allure though it keeps its fees slightly more grounded with $300 per round.

Applying a keen eye to economic value, tribal casino golf courses provide a more fiscally friendly alternative, especially for those sticking to a travel budget. A round at Yocha Dehe at the Cache Creek Casino begins at an affordable $75, including range balls and a cart, and tops out around $210. Comparatively, Shadow Creek’s steep fee still overshadows this figure by nearly $800.

Similarly, enjoy a premier desert golf experience at We-Ko-Pa’s Saguaro course in Fort McDowell, Arizona. Tee times start at $95 in the sweltering summer months but rise to $300 during the popular January and February period. Meanwhile, a round at Salish Cliffs Golf Club at the Little Creek Casino in Washington caps at $135, and Circling Raven in Idaho at the Coeur D’Alene Casino Resort Hotel won’t exceed $179.

In conclusion, the past year has seen some upsides amidst the widespread adversity, notably the revival of golf as a favored pastime, with tribal casinos leading the pack.