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Morgan Run

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Morgan Run Resort and Club by Martin Olivera

Here is a resort and club in San Diego that pretty much has it all: centrally located in a coastal area, close to the Del Mar district and all its buzz -- the Race Track, the fashionable shopping malls, the sumptuous restaurants, the expansive beach, the polo fields. And then there is the resort itself, offering deluxe accommodations, complete conference services, banquet facilities, resort dining, tennis, spa, fitness, swimming and, yes, championship golf.

Formerly known as Whispering Palms, this club became private in January 2000. Rumor has it that it was renamed Morgan Run Resort and Club after a Morgan horse who used to run along a trail by a fence separating the golf course and a horse ranch adjacent to it. The first Morgan horse was born in 1789 in Massachussetts and was named "Figure". It was the start of what was considered the first true American breed. Morgan horses were originally known as "horses of all work", as they were used for transportation, farming, and also parading and racing. In contrast, the Morgan Run Resort and Club should perhaps be known as the "club of all play", due to the variety of resort amenities it offers to its members and guests. Excellence is the quality shared by both, the stylish horse breed and the fine resort, which makes the name Morgan Run the more befitting.

Jay Morrish designed a golf course at Morgan run that is not extremely long and is playable by anyone who can swing a golf club, regardless of age, gender, or ability. At any given day you can see a father-son, or mother-daughter, or entire families at the first tee, ready to go; and right behind them you'd see a scratch player warming up for his or her round. The 27-hole layout is composed of three 9-hole courses -- North, East and South -- the latter being the most challenging. The attraction of this track is its friendliness. But you'll find a challenge as well. Bermuda grass fairways and rough make club selection an exercise in concentration. Players have to make good contact with the ball to be able to make it go the expected yardage. Bunkering is not abundant and fair, and greens are undulating but not severe. Off the tee, one errant drive may result in a "watery grave", if it happens to land in one of the several marsh areas scattered around the course. Or you may find yourself out of bounds, chatting with one of the horses from the neighboring ranches. These horses are known for not returning golf balls back to the player. Go "Figure". The practice facilities -- particularly for the short game -- are considered one of the best in the area.

This golf course has been the venue for the Toyota Celebrity Classic hosted by Stan Humphries since the tournament inception in 1999. This event is part of the Celebrity Players Tour, whose tournaments raise funds for local charities across the United States and Canada. The beneficiary in San Diego is the Children's Hospital. Morgan Run has the habit of dedicating Mondays to charity-benefitting tournaments.

This resort and club is part of a large family of Private Clubs and Resorts, currently owned by ClubCorp -- a Dallas based company, that has been in business almost 50 years and is the premier leader in the Private Club industry. They own Indian Wells CC, Mission Hills CC in the California desert as well as Pinehurst in North Carolina and Firestone CC in Ohio. Members at Morgan Run have the opportunity to upgrade to a benefit called Signature Gold that allows them to enjoy -- for only a small fee -- the other clubs. And even though Morgan Run is a private membership country club, guests of the resort who reserve hotel rooms or meeting space can access all of what the club has to offer.

New expansion for a 15,000 square-foot clubhouse has been approved with groundbreaking to take place after Labor Day, 2006. The "Retreat" will include all new gentlemen's and ladies' locker space, new spa location, all new state of the art fitness, kid's space, yoga and pilates studios, and two pools -- one being a resort style that flows into a four-lane lap pool.

If you are a visitor to San Diego, Morgan Run should be towards the top of your list of places to stay and play. If you live in the area and would like to join the local club with best value for your membership, then this club should definetly be your choice. And if you wish to host your own private tournament, a very experienced staff of golf professionals can help you plan and conduct your event by taking care of all the details.

For more information about Morgan Run Club and Resort call 800-378-4653, or visit their web site For all your golf information and outing needs in the San Diego area, visit San Diego Golf at

Clickto book tee times, corporate golf events or read more information about Morgan Run Golf Course or any of "The 20 Best Golf Courses" in San Diego."

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