There may not be as many choices for golf in the Lower Valley as there are in the Upper or Mid Valley, but the choices are as varied as night is to day.
From the country club side of golf to the more casual, the Southeastern portion of the Rio Grande Valley has a great variety of fairways and greens to choose from.
For the golfer who wants a non-stressful day away from the office or the house and wants to be more in control of how big a challenge he or she wants to take (and not spend a lot of money), Brownsville Golf Center, located at 180 W. San Marcello in Brownsville, may be the ideal course to visit.
Just walking up to the front desk inside the clubhouse has a relaxing tone. You can find peace here – something everyone seems to always be looking for these days.
Wide open fairways and large – yet quick – greens give golfers an opportunity to improve their game without being beaten up by courses that are sometimes way too challenging for those looking at the simpler things in life.
Brownsville Golf Center is exactly what a municipal course should be, inviting and available to all levels of golfers. That is not to say it is not challenging, and water comes into play on most holes.
Also, you still have to carry that water at times and be strategic on several holes, deciding how much you want to cut a corner or to “go for it.” Just because a green is large does not always mean you want to be putting the length of it to get close to the pin. While the course may not be laden with trees, there are still some that will still get in the way, and the saying that trees are 90% air is completely false.
The Lower Valley has such a wide array of golf to choose from. Driving into Rancho Viejo can make one feel like a golf pro (just remember, you have not hit the course yet). The Spanish designed club house and restaurant is pure elegance. Just do not let that feeling of overwhelm you – there’s still a tight golf course with challenges on every hole awaiting you.
Many of the holes here will make the strongest of golfers test their physical and mental skills. Go for it? Cut the corner? Lay up? Those thoughts will force any level of golfer to touch multiple clubs in their bag before finally making a decision. Its layout is intricate, its greens are super quick and, if you do not hit the ball straight, well, there’s not a lot of forgiveness.
Valley International Country Club is on the rise. A course with majestic trees, the course is perfectly self-described as a golf sanctuary. There seems to be something about this course that will lure you to come back over and over (and it is not just the food – even though that could very well do it as well). Maybe there is a pattern of comfortable, calm and peaceful when it comes to Lower Valley golf courses.
Both challenging yet comfortable, Valley International provides the beginning golfer as many challenges as the more experienced golfer. VICC’s peaceful surroundings, combined with a difficult but beatable and rewarding layout, the four sets of tees are key in how you play your round and give even the lowest handicappers some big decisions to make – lay up or grip it and rip it? Risk and reward are premiums on this popular and 18-hole championship layout.
The course also has a nine-hole par-3 executive course (par-27 for the round) on the same property for those who want a change of pace or to practice their short game, where scoring is at a prime, and so is time.
No matter what you are looking for in a golf course, you’ll find it in the Lower Valley – and expect some peaceful, enjoyable and challenging rounds.
Photo 1: Brownsville Golf Center
Photo 2: Brownsville Golf Center
Photo 3: Rancho Viejo Resort and Country Club
Photo 4: Valley International Golf Course