Golf Getaway: Lodge at Woodloch, Poconos, Pennsylvania
Buddy trips aren't just for the guys. Golf, spa, outdoor adventures — the Lodge at Woodloch has them all
Lodge at Woodloch
Why should the guys have all the fun? Get away from the kids, bring along the husbands (or not), and focus on yourself for a change with a stay at the Lodge at Woodloch, the adults-only sanctuary on 150 acres in the lake region of the Poconos in Pennsylvania. The biggest problem you’ll have is choosing which of the many amenities to enjoy each day. There’s a 40,000-square-foot spa; a full calendar of fitness programs, workshops, and outdoor adventures; and excellent golf at Woodloch Springs, just across the road.
Let’s start with golf, which is reason enough to visit Woodloch. The par-72 course at Woodloch Springs will test players at all levels, although with four sets of tees stretching the track from 4,773 to 6,579 yards and slopes from 110 to 139, it’s playable by just about everyone. Architect Rocky Roquemore took full advantage of the mountainous topography and abundant water on the property when he designed the course, which opened in 1992, and the result is not only physically challenging but strikingly scenic as well.
Woodloch Springs has an interesting mix of short and long holes, with seven of the par fours 400 yards or less, and the par fives ranging from 499 to 577 yards. You face one of the hardest holes on the course early in the round, but bombers beware! The 558-yard par-five third hole is routed almost in a U-shape; it requires a 190-yard layup off the tee to an upper landing area, followed by a 185-yard second shot to a safe area left of wetlands to set up a third shot to the two-tiered green.
Three short but interesting par fours (11, 12, and 13) come early on the back nine, followed by the course’s signature hole, the 577-yard par-five 14th hole. Be sure to play the appropriate tees on this hole, since the gold tees require a 220-yard carry over Hells Gate Gorge, which is just as threatening as the name implies. Regardless of which tee you use, you’ll have a long second shot just to get a look at the green, which is hidden to the left behind a waste area and a stand of ball-devouring trees.
After you’ve put your all into a round of golf, the logical place to go is to the spa, which is absolutely unequaled for luxurious amenities, including a full selection of expert facial and body treatments. The nature-inspired surroundings are the perfect setting for multilevel nurturing in private men’s and women’s retreats and coed relaxation areas with cozy fireplaces, covered porches with rocking chairs, or sunny terraces with soaring walls of windows. Treatments include massage, reflexology, shiatsu, Thai bodywork, facials, body wraps, body polishes, and more. To focus even more on your inner self, take advantage of the three MindBody studios for yoga and meditation, including one with an exclusive yoga wall and equipment.
Need a little hydration? Spend some time in the Aqua Garden, with its coed soaking pools with heated HydroMassage, WaterWalls, and a dramatic indoor pool specifically designed for aqua classes and water volleyball. Or pour yourself into the outdoor Horizon Edge Whirlpool for a casual soak. Remember, the Lodge at Woodloch is adults only, so you won’t have any 10-year-olds cannonballing your pool time.
Adventures at Woodloch range from an extensive schedule of art and culinary classes; fly-fishing; guided hiking, biking, and kayaking in the Poconos; gardening programs; and horseback riding. There’s a year-round calendar of classes, workshops, and events that cater to every interest — even some you may not know you have!
Dining in the TREE Restaurant and Bar features creatively prepared, naturally raised meats and fish and organic, locally grown vegetables. For a special treat, check out one of the programs in the demonstration kitchen presented by the chef and his team.
Accommodations are luxurious and comfortable — but there are only 57 rooms and suites, so make your reservations in advance. Midweek per-person rates start at $309 a night, but many packages are available. The Lodge at Woodloch is the perfect destination for couples and others looking for peace, quiet, and restoration.