I rarely write reviews but was so happy with my recent visit to PGA West Residence Club I wanted to share my experience at this fantastic community.
The PGA West is located in La Quinta, CA, a small city in the Coachella Valley about 20 minutes from Palm Springs.
If you like sunshine without pesky humidity, this is an ideal location as the valley is surrounded on three sides by mountains. It’s dry and sunny here every day of the year with an average high temperature of 89.5 °F and an average low of 62.1 °F.
Fractional golf homes are a hot trend, and PGA West is the top golf destination in the west. We were invited to stay a few nights and learn about the club. After a short 2-hour drive from Orange County we arrived and stayed three nights in April 2018.
Upon arrival at the PGA West Residence Club, I was immediately impressed by the scenic location.
Thirty-two houses look out over picture postcard views of verdant green dotted with palm trees, winding through the desert against the backdrop of a deep blue sky framing the gorgeous white-tipped Santa Rosa Mountains.
As soon as you get out of the car you start to relax, it’s like coming home, but to a home where someone has already done all the cleaning, cut the grass, and stocked the fridge.
Each home is single-level, with appealing Spanish-style architecture surrounded by bright green grass and lush shrubs and flowers. The exteriors feature white-washed stucco with traditional red pantile roofs and solid paneled dark wood doors.
Inside The Residences
You enter through an impressive entryway featuring a vaulted ceiling and large chandelier. The 3,365 square foot open floorplan is well-designed with great flow and plenty of room for everyone. Massive ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows, and tiled floors create an airy, expansive feel, flooding the house with light.
The family spaces have a large kitchen with breakfast bar, generous formal dining room and a great room with a fireplace.
Although there were six of us we had plenty of space to spread out, enjoy a quiet space, or come together for family time.
The interiors are immaculate with tasteful décor, high-end finishes, and thoughtful touches. I have high standards for cleanliness, and I didn’t find a single surface or household item that wasn’t as-new and pristine.
The furniture is not your typical vacation home hard-wearing cheap fixes, it’s quality that my wife would choose for our own home with superior fabrics and upholstery, polished wood, and decorative accents.
There are two sizeable master suites. Each includes a seating area, closets, and a large ensuite bathroom. They are both beautifully furnished.
There is a separate casita which is set up like a second small house, which is ideal if you are entertaining friends. I used the casita to set up my laptop and used it as a workspace for a few hours per day.
All bathrooms are impressive with huge showers, indulgent soaking tubs, marble countertops, fluffy towels, and robes. The beds are super-comfortable. Large closets provide all the storage you could need.
Window shutters keep the light and heat out, and the community is quiet at night.
The large kitchen is well-equipped with everything you could need whether you’re just putting together a quick lunchtime salad or planning a family dinner. The appliances are nicer then any I’ve ever used.
On our first evening, we invited our long-time friends from Palm Springs over for dinner. Cooking in the kitchen was fun with lots of space and plenty of cooking utensils.
We entertained in the formal dining area with its huge ten-foot chandelier and a large arched picture window that looks out over palm trees and the distant mountains.
Our friends were impressed, to say the least!
In each backyard, there is an 8-person private bubbly spa, a barbeque, and a fire pit. The spa area is gorgeous! We adjusted the temperature down on the spa, and our two children splashed around and used it as the pool during the day.
Comfortable loungers are scattered around, and there is a lovely shaded patio area that is a perfect spot for putting your feet up and browsing through some magazines in the late afternoon sunshine.
The pool area is private, so there is nothing to disturb you while you relax, enjoy the warm desert breezes, and drink in the views.
Maintenance and Concierge
The homes are well-maintained, but there is a super-helpful concierge service who will arrange for to come and fix any issues right away.
The concierge service is also there to help you with anything else you need. We rang to make dinner reservations and to arrange a delivery, and they couldn’t have been more polite or helpful.
Even though we were visiting for a handful of days, we felt like VIPs, and I can imagine that owning a share of the PGA West Residence Club is amazing.
The community is thoughtfully laid out, so each home is only a short walk to the welcoming member’s lounge, fitness facilities, pool, and 6,000 square foot practice putting green.
The gardeners and landscapers ensure every shrub and blade of grass is perfect. One night we had high winds that blew some of the leaves around, and the landscapers were out cleaning it up early in the morning.
The member’s area, pool, and fitness center is a great place to hang out, however, for me, the best part of the PGA West Residences is the nearby PGA West amenities and social happenings.
Before we arrived, I had read another PGA West Residences review that talked about how amazing the amenities are for this community – and they truly are incredible.
As part of your ownership package, you receive an automatic Premier Sport membership to PGA West. Your membership includes access to a very well-equipped gym and fitness center, where you can take wellness and fitness classes seven days a week. These include yoga, Pilates, stretch, strength, jazzercise, spin, water aerobics, and Zumba. There are also plenty of fitness machines, free weights, and personal trainers available.
On the day we visited the PGA West amenities there was over twenty active classes and events going on. You can have a great social life as a resident here.
If you prefer, you can play tennis on any of the ten courts, taking your pick from clay or hard surfaces. Sixteen pickleball courts and the health and racquet club complete the lineup.
If you don’t have anyone to play with, you can call the concierge, and they’ll set you up with your choice of an instructor or a partner. That’s the level of service you get here.
Walking around the club is fun – everyone knows everyone. We were introduced to new friends and met several personal trainers, a pickleball instructor, and a golf pro while there.
Residences Get Access to New 2018 Club Additions
The new addition plans for 2018 include adding a new bigger resort-style pool, a splash pool for younger children, a bocce court, an intriguing golf-cart drive-in theater, and a new poolside bar and grill.
Owners of the PGA West Private Residence Club with a Sport membership get automatic access to all these new amenities.
Of course, golf is the main reason to buy a home here, and fractional ownership gives you access to six PGA West golf courses with reduced green fees and full use of all practice facilities.
The courses have previously hosted prestigious tournaments such as The Skins Game, the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic, The Grand Slam of Golf, The Legends of Golf, and the PGA Tour Qualifying School. You can select from three private courses and three championship courses that are available for your golfing pleasure. There is something for golfers of every standard and style.
I am a fan of links-style golf, so had a tour of the Tom Weiskopf Private. This is a 7,164-yard par 72 course. It’s a moderately challenging course for experienced golfers and a pretty good choice for mixed ability parties. The first drive is the trickiest, as a creek runs across the fairway making accuracy paramount. The course is dotted with stone bridges and waterways, and it’s deliberately designed to bring to mind the Old Course at St. Andrews.
The next course we checked out was The Stadium which was designed by quirky genius course designer Pete Dye. This 7,330-yard course is truly challenging, famously rated as one of the most difficult in the world. There are different problems to solve on every hole requiring a thoughtful approach and the ability to adjust your style of play. Fairways narrowed and expanded unpredictably, and the greens are well-defended and play very fast once you get there.
The last course I had a chance to tour was the Arnold Palmer Private. This was my personal favorite because the last five holes are set directly against the glorious scenery of the snow-capped Santa Rosa Mountains, and it is quite simply jaw-droppingly beautiful.
There are three other courses that we didn’t get to visit this time. The Jack Nicklaus Private is 6,951 yards, par 72 and allegedly features a lot of tiny tucked-away greens and blind shots. The 14th looked like a beautiful hole.
The Greg Norman course is a 7,100-yard-long meander through the desert featuring many, large, deep bunkers, water hazards, and forced carries over the ungroomed desert. It looks like Norman designed it to suit his own aggressive target golf play style and to reward gutsy shots.
The Jack Nicklaus Tournament Course looked to be an open, spacious course featuring elevated greens and large jagged bunkers. We spotted several unique features including mounds edging fairways, lipped bunkers, and split fairways. However, despite all this, it reportedly plays more easily off the tee than The Stadium, although the greens and green-side bunker shots are notorious for causing even excellent players a little trouble.
There are also multiple golf events taking place such as the opportunity to win a two-year lease on a Lamborghini if you can shoot a hole in one! There are even ladies only days on one of the courses every Tuesday.
There are several clubhouses; we spent the majority of our time in the Palmer Private clubhouse which is restricted to PGA members and has a really friendly and intimate atmosphere.
I loved looking out of the immense picture windows which frame the spectacular mountain views. We also spent quite a bit of time in the well-stocked golf shop and had a late lunch at Ernie’s Bar and Grill in the Tournament Clubhouse which overlooks the ninth/eighteenth double green of the Nicklaus Tournament course. We had fun watching golfers make their pressure shots.
The food was very enjoyable, especially the Kobe burgers and Ernie’s has a really buzzy atmosphere. It’s a great spot.
The Greg Norman Clubhouse is something special. It is set up like an Australian ranch and has a cozy feel especially down on the sunken patio where there are open fireplaces and lanterns to enjoy.
It’s worth knowing that as an owner at the PGA West Residence Club you get preferred pricing in all of the clubhouse restaurants, plus a discount on the clothing on sale in the golf shops.
It seems to me that if you’re actively considering buying a second home, there are many good reasons to consider buying at the PGA West Residence Club. The golf is, as we expected, outstanding.
But we were astonished by how many things there were to do. The sports, fitness, entertainment, and dining amenities are all impressive.
Plus, it’s located in a beautiful, scenic spot with perfect weather and there is shopping, spas, art museums, national parks, and more all within easy reach.
Fractional ownership is growing in popularity in luxury destinations, and the PGA West Residence Club is the only option for fractional luxury ownership in Palm Springs. There are no condo hotels in Palm Springs to purchase either, but if you are considering Florida there are many.
You can buy a real part of your second home. You own it; you have the deeds, it belongs to you, just like your main home. You can buy either a 1/4 share or a 1/9 share; although the 1/4 shares are sold out.
There are also several whole-ownership homes for sale in the PGA West Residences, and if you’re interested in buying one of these as a second home, you’d be able to offset the costs of maintenance and utilities by renting it out to a vacation rental company such as Inspirato when you’re not using the property.
Owners also get access to Third Home exchanges, which gives you hundreds of luxury property destinations.
Once you have made your investment, you can visit as often as you want to, and stay as long as you wish, within the terms of your agreement. For example, 1/4 owners can visit anytime they want (unlimited usage!) but get a guaranteed six planned weeks each year. The management company works very hard to try to ensure owners can visit as much as they want to.
You are not limited to specific weeks of the year. You are not limited to the booking calendar for a particular home either, you can stay in any of the thirty-two homes which gives you much more flexibility about when and how long you choose to stay.
Getting A Free Tour
Don’t just rely on my review of owning at the PGA West Residence Club. You truly must see and experience this incredibly luxurious and special place for yourself.
Stop by and ask for Cheryl so you can get a complimentary tour of the fabulous members-only clubs, wonderful restaurants, breathtaking views and the incredible facilities.
You are going to love it!