THE AMERICAN CLUB RESORT – A Kohler Experience (Part II: Hospitality & Events)

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

Last Week, The Fourth Tee introduced its readership to the Kohler brand in golf in Part I of its Destination Golf series featuring The American Club Resort.

This week, in Part II, our final part in this 2-part feature, The Fourth Tee continues it’s Q&A with the American Club Resort featuring its hospitality and the events it offers its guests.

The Fourth Tee thanks The American Club Resort for participating in this in-depth feature.

HOSPITALITY

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

The Fourth Tee:  The American Club Resort includes two hotels, The American Club and Inn on Woodlake.  How far apart are these two hotels?

The American Club Resort: The American Club and Inn on Woodlake are only a few short blocks apart and there is a free shuttle at the resort that will take you to each location, to the golf courses and to the shops.

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  What can guests expect during a shopping excursion to The Shops at Woodlake?

TACR: Guests can experience a variety of shops and dining options at The Shops at Woodlake Kohler.

TFT:  What is the proximity of The Shops at Woodlake to both hotels?

TACR: The Shops at Woodlake are literally on the front steps of Inn on Woodlake. No driving is necessary. The Shops at Woodlake are about a block from The American Club, a relaxing walk but the shuttle is also available.

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  What can guests expect in the way of culinary experiences at The American Club and Inn at Woodlake?

TACR: The American Club Resort offers a wide variety of culinary delights, from formal dining at The Immigrant Restaurant and Winery Bar, Italian fare at Cucina, expansive breakfast, lunch and dinner at The Wisconsin Room, casual pub fare and craft beer at Horse & Plow, and dessert and homemade chocolates at The Craverie Chocolatier Café. Also both Whistling Straits and Blackwolf Run clubhouses serve breakfast, lunch and dinner.

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

KOHLER KIDZ

TFT:  What sort of family-friendly activities does The American Club Resort offer guests with children?

TACRTo quote:  “We know that today, with so many families overscheduled and limited on time, family travel is the top way to reconnect and create cherished memories,” said Christine Loose, resident manager for The American Club & Inn on Woodlake. “Kohler Kidz was born with this in mind, offering families the time and activities to create special memories together. We know more families are traveling together and we are thrilled to offer an enjoyable, fun-filled experience for kids and parents alike.”

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

Additionally, we know that the parents also deserve some time alone so they shouldn’t miss out on 20% off services at Kohler Waters Spa.

A list of activities are available at: http://www.americanclubresort.com/village/outdoor_activities/family_activities.html

For information on Kohler Kidz package visit: http://www.americanclubresort.com/packages/iow/family_kohler_kidz_package.html

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

KOHLER EVENTS

TFT:  What are some up-coming events that you’d like to share with our readers?

TACR: Readers should not miss out on the annual Kohler Festival of Beer, taking place Memorial Day weekend, May 27-29 in Kohler, Wisconsin.  Below is a list of some of our upcoming events.

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

2011 Kohler Festival of Beer

Village of Kohler
May 27-29

Join us in the Village of Kohler for the third annual Kohler Festival of Beer – a weekend of good food and great beer! The popular festival-style event, which continues to sell out to more than 1,000 brew fans, is full of beer-themed happenings, a homebrew competition, and tastings from more than 30 brewers.

 

Celebration of Italy

The Shops at Woodlake
July 8-10

From food to fashion, Ferraris to fine wine, experience everything Italian at this weekend gala which takes place in July. Enjoy yoga, gondola rides on Wood Lake, dining, shopping and many complimentary events, as well as giant sand sculptures created by internationally known artists.

 

Harvest Days

The Shops at Woodlake
October 1&2, 8&9 and 15&16
Family-friendly activities include a towering hay fort, corn maze, petting zoo, wagon and animal rides, giant pumpkin contest and more! Fee. Please call 800-344-2838 for more information.

(Courtesy Kohler Co.)

11th Annual Kohler Food & Wine Experience

Village of Kohler
October 20-23


A weekend of food and wine seminars, demonstrations and tastings. Exciting fare from award-winning local and international chefs. Many events are complimentary including food and wine samplings, book signings, trunk shows and more. More information to come.

TFT:  What are some of the more memorable past events with which the resort has entertained its guests?

TACR: The American Club Resort holds a variety of events year-round. Two popular events include the Kohler Festival of Beer and the Kohler Food & Wine Experience. Guests come from all over the country to enjoy the quaint Village of Kohler, the incredible culinary delights and the unique beer and wine events that take place during these events.

(Courtesy Kohler Co.)

TFT:  In November 2009, the resort held an event “In Celebration of Chocolate.”  Another “didn’t know that” moment, but, The Fourth Tee discovered that Kohler is also in the chocolate business (http://www.kohlerchocolates.com/).  Were the chocolates at the 2009 event all Kohler chocolates?

Village of Kohler May 27-29

(Courtesy Kohler Co.)

TACR: Yes, the “In Celebration of Chocolate” event was quite popular at the resort. Guests savored gourmet desserts, from cakes and tortes to pastries, candies and specialty items – especially our very own delectable KOHLER Original Recipe Chocolates.

(Courtesy Kohler Co.)

The Kohler Co. confectionery business began with an internal team of chefs, food and beverage executives, and other resort professionals led by Director of Culinary Arts Ulrich Koberstein. The finest ingredients have been selected and variations of recipes tested to create each KOHLER Original Recipe Chocolate – seeking to explore limitless opportunity in taste and texture. Signature lines include Terrapins, Garden Ganache, Dark Mountain Toffees, Baking Chocolate, Toffee Bark, and Terrapin Trail Mix.

The KOHLER Original Recipe Chocolates are available at the Craverie Chocolatier Café, located at the Shops at Woodlake. The open production kitchen at the Craverie displays for the public, the sights and smells of the art of making chocolate.

(Courtesy Kohler Co.)

The story of KOHLER Original Recipe Chocolates
After observing the creation of chocolates in a nearby community, which sparked his recollection that taste seldom matched anticipation, Herb Kohler decided that the world needed a better “Turtle.”

He discussed the idea with Ulrich Koberstein, Group Director-Culinary Arts, at The American Club®, the Midwest’s only AAA Five Diamond resort hotel, and together they felt the chefs would enjoy the challenge of trying to create the best in the world. Hundreds of samples later, most of which were tasted by both Mr. Kohler and his Director, they launched KOHLER Original Recipe Chocolates with a batch of “Terrapins” that guests of the hotel and associates of Kohler Co. acknowledged unparalleled.

Many batches later, those original Terrapins have become the basis for an emerging chocolate business that refuses to clutter the marketplace; rather, it seeks to explore limitless opportunity in taste and texture with natural raw materials. This is the challenge of the KOHLER® brand in all of its products and services: to bring to market and let the market decide whether KOHLER indeed is the leading edge that deserves its confidence. So grows KOHLER Original Recipe Chocolates.

TFT:  Can we expect another such event in the near future?

TACR: The American Club Resort is always planning events throughout the year and guests are invited to visit www.AmericanClub.com to learn more about our ongoing events. Guests should also know that they can purchase KOHLER Original Recipe Chocolates at the Craverie Chocolatier Café, located at the Shops at Woodlake as well as online at http://www.kohlerchocolates.com.

(Courtesy Kohler Co.)

TFT:  Finally, when, in your opinion, is the best time to visit to get in great dining, great events, golf, spa and great shopping?

TACR: The American Club Resort offers year-round activities and events, perfect for any traveler’s preference. Whether you are traveling with your family, celebrating a holiday or interested in a weekend getaway, the resort truly offers something for everyone, all year-round. For those who wish to experience Whistling Straits or Blackwolf Run, the courses are generally open April through October. Kohler Golf Academy offers lessons and clinics throughout the year. Other activities including dining, spa, shopping and outdoor adventures are available year-round.

The Fourth Tee thanks The American Club Resort for the opportunity to not only feature the resort as its new destination pick, but also to conduct this extensive Q&A.  To learn more about The American Club Resort and the Kohler golf experience, visit:  http://www.AmericanClub.com  or http://www.kohler.com/corporate/business/golf-and-resort-destinations.html.

THE AMERICAN CLUB RESORT – A Kohler Experience (Part I: Golf & Spa)

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

Herb V. Kohler (Courtesy Kohler Co.)

When Americans hear the name Kohler, golf is probably not the first thing that comes to mind.  Instead, the majority of us primarily think of faucets when we think of Kohler.  And we wouldn’t be wrong.  Founded in 1873 by an Austrian immigrant, John Michael Kohler, and headquartered in Kohler, Wisconsin, the Kohler Company (“Kohler”) is a true American company with a storied history. Today, almost one-and-a-half centuries later, Herbert V. Kohler, grandson of founder John Michael Kohler and current President of Kohler Company, is leading the company’s charge into the business of golf resorts and destinations.

While many of us may not have automatically associated Kohler with golf resorts and golf courses, we definitely have heard of the renowned courses owned by Kohler.  Names like Whistling Straits and Black Wolf Run, both stops on the Major tours.  But Kohler’s golf experience is not limited to Stateside.  Kohler also owns The Old Course Hotel, Golf and Spa Resort in St. Andrews Scotland and operates The Dukes golf course there.

Old Course Hotel, St. Andrews, Scotland (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

It’s been a while since we featured a destination golf resort and The Fourth Tee is excited to name The American Club Resort in Kohler, Wisconsin as our next Destination Golf pick and this one is a treat!  The Fourth Tee conducted an extensive Q&A with The American Club Resort.  There is so much to enjoy at The American Club Resort that this will be a two-part feature.  Tune in next week for Part II.

Whistling Straits logo (Courtesy Kohler Co.)

Straits Course (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)


The Fourth Tee:  Whistling Straits consists of two 18-hole courses:  the Straits Course and the Irish Course.  What are the fundamental the differences between these courses – i.e., in the way they play?

The American Club Resort:  The Straits Course has a higher course difficulty rating (77.2 to 75.6) and slope rating (152 to 146) than the Irish.

Irish Course (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  Which of the two is the most popular among your patrons?

TACR:  The Straits course has the highest level of demand due to largely to the notoriety it has gained by hosting major championships.

Shipwreck - Straits Course (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  In the past Whistling Straits has been the venue for several professional golf tournaments including the PGA Championship, U.S. Senior Open and the Palmer Cup.  Which of the two courses was featured more in these professional tourneys?

TACR:  Straits:  2004 and 2010 PGA Championships, 2007 US Senior Open, 2015 PGA Championship, 2020 Ryder Cup….Irish:  2005 Palmer Cup

TFT:  Will Whistling Straits be hosting any professional tournaments in near future?

TACR: Whistling Straits will be host to the 2015 PGA Championship and the 2020 Ryder Cup.

Gremlin's Ear - Straits Course (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  So, on some New York/New Jersey area courses, geese and, depending upon where you’re playing, the odd deer, tend to be a staple during a round of golf.  Sheep are featured in some of your photos.  Are they an indelible part of the Whistling Straits golf experience?

TACR:  They are.  The Scottish Blackface Sheep have become a signature part of the Whistling Straits experience.  They graze freely among the dunes of the golf course and are one of the most popular photos ops for our patrons.

Scottish Blackface Sheep grazing green side - Irish Course (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  In 2009, the Straits Course was ranked #3 in Golf Digest’s Top 100 rating.  What would you primarily attribute that ranking to?

TACR:  The combination of extraordinary golf course design and course maintenance, unique and memorable golf experience (walking only, professional caddies) and the growing tradition of hosting memorable major golf championships.

Straits Course - (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  In the same year and ranking, Golf Digest ranked the sister course, the Irish Course, #30 out of 100.  Although they both made the top 100 list, why do you think there is such a disparity in the rankings?

TACR:  The design, maintenance and experience elements are just as strong as the Straits….the large reason for this disparity is major championships hosted.  The Irish also has more traditional elements that you would typically see on other US courses, unlike the Straits.

Irish Course (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

Blackwolf Run logo (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)


MeadowValleys Course (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  According to your site, both the Rivers Course and the Meadow Valleys Course will reopen this year.  How long have they been closed?

TACR: The Rivers and Meadow Valleys courses have been closed since 2008 undergoing renovation and refurbishment in preparation for the 2012 U.S. Women’s Open. Both courses open in late May for the 2011 season after a major maintenance project on all 36 holes.

Rivers Course (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  What’s better with the re-opening?

TACR: In 2009 and 2010, Blackwolf Run completed a major maintenance project on all 36 holes.  The courses now feature new grasses on greens, tees, fairways and selected rough areas. The improved surfaces will provide major championship-caliber playing surfaces.  All of the sand bunkers have been refurbished. There are five tee options, providing increased degrees of difficulty to players of all skill levels.

Rivers Course (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  The Original Championship Course, billed as a “composite course of the River and MeadowValleys,” will be hosting the U.S. Women’s Open in 2012.  When in 2012?

TACR: Site of the first Kohler-hosted golf championship in 1998, The Original Championship Course at Blackwolf Run welcomes the 67th U.S. Women’s Open, July 2-8, 2012. One of Pete Dye’s crowning achievements, Blackwolf Run opened for play in June 1988 and was named that year’s “Best New Public Course” by Golf Digest. It has continued to accumulate awards and honors including regularly being ranked on the list of “America’s 100 Greatest Golf Courses” by Golf Digest and the “Top 100 You Can Play” by GOLF Magazine.

TFT:  Are you offering, or planning on offering, any special packages for out-of-towners who want to attend this event?

TACR: Those interested should check www.2012uswomensopen.com for updates.

TFT:  For interested readers, how soon in advance should they book their stay?

TACR:  Advanced booking for hotel golf packages is highly recommended.  To properly experience all that Blackwolf Run and Whistling Straits have to offer, it is important to experience all 4 golf courses.  Our To Dye Four package is the perfect answer.

MeadowValleys Course (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

KOHLER GOLF ACADEMY

TFT:  Tell us about your golf academy.

TACR: Kohler Golf Academy, ranked in the top 50 best golf schools in America by GOLF Magazine, provides year-round golf instruction with practice facilities at Blackwolf Run and Whistling Straits during the golf season and at the Kohler Golf Academy Indoor Studio, located at The Shops at Woodlake, during the off season.

Guests can improve their game with golf schools or private lessons at the Kohler Golf Academy. Our certified instructors have experience working with players of all abilities including touring professionals and top amateurs. Take advantage of state-of-the-art tools to advance your game, including video analysis with the JC Video System.

For additional information, contact Todd Wagner, Manager, Kohler Golf Academy, at (920) 565-6075 or via e-mail at KohlerGolfAcademy@kohler.com.

KOHLER WATERS SPA

Kohler Waters Spa (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  The Fourth Tee must admit it is salivating at the photos of the spa experience at your resort.  Tell us more about Kohler Waters Spa’s hydrotherapy treatments.

Riverbath Room (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TACR: They are truly a one-of-a-kind experience.  Kohler Co. has been in the water experiential business for over 135 years so it only makes sense that the Kohler Waters Spa focuses on the most innovative and leading edge water therapies.  We specialize in the use of hot and cold to relax the body and aid in circulation.  Some are very quieting and centering of the body, some are simply outrageous and unexpected.

Kohler Custom Vichy Shower (Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  What other amenities does Kohler Waters Spa offer?

TACR:  We feature the very highest quality treatments that are not only luxurious but are also very therapeutic to the body.  In addition, we feature our signature 30 foot pool with 8 foot waterfall.  Under the waterfall is a bench to sit on and relax while the water pours over your shoulders.

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TACR (Cont’d):  We have steam, sauna, whirlpools and cool plunges in each respite area.  The men’s cool plunge is unique as it is 8 feet deep so you can jump right in!  We also feature a great enclosed rooftop deck with 16 foot fireplace and co-ed whirlpool for couples to relax and unwind from their hectic lives.

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  The Fourth Tee noted that there are Kohler Waters Spas in Chicago, IL and St. Andrews, Scotland.  Are there any other spa locations in the pipeline? i.e., to additional U.S. locations?

TACR: We are always looking but it has to make sense for us and it has to be the right location.  There are no sites we can share with you right now, but one never knows when the next Kohler Waters Spa will “bubble up!”

(Courtesy of Kohler Co.)

TFT:  Finally, when, in your opinion, is the best time to visit to get in great dining, great events, golf, spa and great shopping?

TACR: The American Club Resort offers year-round activities and events, perfect for any traveler’s preference. Whether you are traveling with your family, celebrating a holiday or interested in a weekend getaway, the resort truly offers something for everyone, all year-round. For those who wish to experience Whistling Straits or Blackwolf Run, the courses are generally open April through October. Kohler Golf Academy offers lessons and clinics throughout the year. Other activities including dining, spa, shopping and outdoor adventures are available year-round.

The Fourth Tee thanks The American Club Resort for the opportunity to not only feature the resort as its new destination pick, but also to conduct this extensive Q&A.  To learn more about The American Club Resort and the Kohler golf experience, visit:  http://www.AmericanClub.com  or http://www.kohler.com/corporate/business/golf-and-resort-destinations.html.

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