“I would like to be remembered as a man who had a wonderful time living life, a man who had good friends, fine family—and I don’t think I could ask for anything more than that, actually.” – Frank Sinatra

Las Vegas, Nevada: Southern Highlands is an ultra-private community about a fifteen-minute drive from the Las Vegas Strip. Its majestic clubhouse overlooks a Jones Sr./Jr. co-design with sweeping elevation changes, waterfalls, deep-faced bunkers, bent grass greens, and an expert caddie program.

“Our course was the last co-design of Robert Trent Jones Sr. and Jr.,” explained Jason Cheney, general manager at Southern Highlands. “We are one of only four co-designs in the world by the duo. It’s a parkland layout with a big footprint. You could easily fit 36 holes within our 18-hole outline. Accuracy is a must with seven water features and more than five football fields worth of bunkering. Our exclusivity has its privileges, and our high-touch service standards are of note the moment you pass through the club’s entrance and drive down Robert Trent Jones Lane,” said Cheney.

“The very best courses are those where nature has provided the canvas and my job is to discover her secrets and reveal them,” expressed Robert Trent Jones Jr. “I try to design golf courses that will fascinate people so they’ll want to play them many times and learn the depths and meanings of their stories, subtext, and poetry.”

Putting A Face On The Dish

Before joining the culinary team at Southern Highlands, Terry Redihan worked a stint at MGM on The Strip.

“I applied for a sous-chef position at the club,” recalled Redihan. “When I asked for directions to my interview, instructions were simple: drive down the interstate a couple of miles and take a right at the green patch. Southern Highlands truly looked like an oasis in the desert!

“When I walked in the door of the clubhouse, it took my breath away. Its kitchen design is a chef’s dream. At many well-known resorts in Las Vegas, you are judged by performing in a high volume environment. Here, the atmosphere is much more intimate,” explained Chef Redihan. “As the executive chef, I know member preferences and it’s likely I will see them again the next day. My reputation is on the line.

“Unlike what you might see on an episode of Hell’s Kitchen, our process is orderly and structured. Everything from our pasta to demi-glace is made from scratch,” boasted Chef Redihan. “As I approach my 20th anniversary at Southern Highlands, there have been noticeable changes in member palates. In addition to lighter organic fare, we are receiving more requests for everything from vegan to gluten-free menu options.”

Your Daily Routing

The 13,000 square-foot, stand-alone spa at Southern Highlands provides a nice complement to the golf facilities. Features include four tennis courts, five treatment rooms, a salon, a 25-meter lap pool, children’s splash pad, and a fitness center with two private Pilates studios and a group movement room. “Our most popular treatment is the ‘R&R by Southern Highlands.’ Your session begins with a mineralized exfoliating salt scrub, followed by a self-heating mud wrap, and then a head-to-toe massage,” revealed Iyara Ferrante, spa director at Southern Highlands. “Our list of healing therapies is extensive. One newer offer is a sports massage with nourishing oil infused with antioxidants and cannabidiol extract.

“Spa services shouldn’t be considered a luxury indulgence,” expressed Ferrante. “They are important to integrate into your routine for overall well-being. Although daily life precludes most of us from frequent massage remedies, it’s important to set aside some personal time—even if it’s only a couple of minutes—for ‘me’ time.

“One habit I recommend is a simple five-minute meditation when you wake up in the morning. The calming experience will better prepare you for the upcoming day. If you dedicate the time and meditation becomes a part of your ritual [like brushing your teeth], you will notice a more positive outlook on life.”

Managing A Desert Footprint

Southern Highlands has an estimated 11,000 trees and 250,000 plants accenting its course. The landscaping is more than triple what you will find on the entire three-mile stretch of Las Vegas Boulevard (The Strip).

“We have 110 acres of turf and 120 acres of vegetation that requires care,” detailed Andy Hawkins, director of agronomy. “Smart management and constant investment in water saving processes is my top priority. For example, we budget $20,000 per year for wetting agents that help reduce the amount of water required. That investment saves between $150,000 to $175,000 in annual water costs.

“Another water saving practice involves deep watering our greens only once per week. During the other six days, we hand water the surfaces to mitigate water runoff. This may seem foolhardy during the summer, but the routine ‘trains’ roots to push deeper into the ground to find water, resulting in a healthier putting surface.

“Shadow Creek [part of MGM Resorts] has long been a benchmark by which Las Vegas golf has been measured,” said Hawkins. “We offer an equally compelling golf experience with membership camaraderie and family centric culture that Shadow Creek can’t match.”

Competition From The Strip

Las Vegas has clearly earned the right to be called the “Entertainment Capital of the World” with hundreds of shows, concerts, and performers vying for your attention.

“With so many quality diversions only minutes away, we are dedicated to making sure that our in-house events are of equal appeal,” confirmed Rachael Carter, food and beverage manager/sommelier at Southern Highlands.

“Although our 60-member wine lockers prove popular, I invest time vetting various wines for our seasonal menus,” stated Carter. “We typically have a selection of 300 choices in rotation ranging from those many love and know [a Cabernet Sauvignon from Pahlmeyer-Jayson in California], to boutique up-and-coming options [The Mascot, made from younger vines of Harlan Estate, BOND, and Promontory vineyards in Napa], and highly rated new varietals [Domaine du Vieux Télégraphe from France].

“I encourage adventure. The next time one is looking for an aged Cabernet, try Gran Reserva Rioja,” recommended Carter. “The moderately priced wine has refined tannins and robust dark fruit.” 

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