Golf enthusiasts have their pick of choice Wisconsin golf resorts that not only take advantage of the state’s gorgeous natural surroundings, but also offer full-service meeting facilities for groups of all sizes. Whether it’s an intimate corporate golf outing or a full conference planned with golf in mind, here are several first-class Wisconsin golf resorts from which to choose.
Grand Geneva Resort and Spa
Just a short distance from Chicago, Milwaukee and Madison, Wisconsin, the Grand Geneva Resort and Spa is on the banks of Geneva Lake. The 1,300-acre resort is an outdoor recreation mecca with hiking, mountain biking, skiing, horseback riding, tennis, motorized scooter rentals and championship golf. Meeting planners interested in hosting events there have their pick of 62,000 square feet of meeting space, including the resort’s 13,700-square-foot Forum Convention Center, another 12,000-square-foot conference center, several ballrooms, breakout rooms and six executive boardrooms.
The property also has a rustic ski chalet with exposed beams and a view of the Mountain Top, Lake Geneva’s ski mountain — with 20 downhill ski runs for all ages — and outdoor function spaces for both small and large events. The property can host conferences for up to 1,500 people and weddings with as many as 400 guests. Groups can play golf on two 18-hole courses: The Brute course, with 7,000 yards, which features massive sand traps and prominent water features, or The Highlands, a par-72 Scottish Links-style course with 68 bunkers and huge rolling greens that average over 8,000 square feet. It was originally designed by Pete Dye and Jack Nicklaus and was transformed in 1996 by Bob Cupp. Groups can organize a private golf outing for up to 144 players per course.
The resort offers an extensive menu of team-building activities, including build-a-bike, sled-building, charity races and scavenger hunts. There’s also culinary team-building activities such as Pizza Production and Chili Creations. Grand Geneva has 610 guest accommodations, including 29 private villas and the Timber Ridge Lodge and Waterpark, which features a 50,000-square-foot indoor/outdoor water park.
Wilderness Hotel and Golf Resort
Wisconsin Dells is known as the unofficial water park capital of the world, and the Wilderness Hotel and Golf Resort does its part to add to that designation with four indoor and four outdoor water parks from which to choose. It is also a premier golf destination.
The Wild Rock Golf Club at the Wilderness has an 18-hole championship golf course that can accommodate 144 players and The Woods nine-hole short course. Not everyone can take to the links like Tiger Woods, so the resort offers group golf clinics to give beginning golfers needed tips and recommendations. Dedicated meeting planners and tournament coordinators are on staff to help manage the group’s golf outing, dining arrangements, overnight accommodations and meeting room reservations.
The Wilderness Hotel’s Glacier Canyon Conference Center hosts the bulk of the resort’s meeting facilities. The center has 56,000 square feet of conference space that can host groups of up to 1,600 people theater-style or 1,200 for a banquet in the 14,823-square-foot Sandstone Ballroom. The 8,812-square-foot Wilderness Ballroom can host groups of up to 844 theater-style or 500 for a banquet. The clubhouse at Wild Rock has a banquet room that can seat up to 160 guests in a reception setting, with two decks and a covered patio where guests can mingle and watch golfers on the practice green.
If the group needs separate rooms for its general meeting, meals and breakout sessions, the center can comfortably host groups of up to 400 people. The Wilderness has 1,182 guest rooms between its main lodge, condos, cabins and villas. Most meeting attendees stay at Glacier Canyon Lodge, which is attached to the conference center.
The property is an entertainment hub, so meeting planners don’t have to worry about attendees who don’t golf. There is a zip line, go-karts, the Take Flight flying theater experience and a spa.
Devil’s Head Resort and Convention Center
Devil’s Head Resort is a full-service ski and golf resort just two and a half hours from Chicago in the Baraboo Bluffs in south-central Wisconsin. The resort sits on a 1,200-acre nature preserve in Sauk County, just south of the Wisconsin Dells, and is within minutes of Devil’s Lake State Park, Lake Wisconsin and Parfrey’s Glen, which offers hiking paths through a glacier-carved ravine that reaches a depth of 100 feet.
The resort has two 18-hole championship golf courses — Glacier and Prairie Glen — that are built up on a sea hill and are unique in the Midwest because of their many elevation changes. Each course can host groups of 144 players. If meeting attendees don’t play golf, there are plenty of fun things to do on property or nearby. The resort has two pools, a hot tub, tennis courts, a fitness center and four restaurants. Devil’s Head Mountain has 300 acres of skiable terrain with 30 ski trails for all levels of skier and a 500-foot elevation gain. It also offers cross-country skiing in the winter with a three-and-a-half-mile trail that starts from hole No. 1 of the Glacier golf course.
Devil’s Head is close to some of the area’s most visited attractions, including the Circus World Museum, Wollersheim Winery Distillery Bistro, which offers tours and tastings, outlet shopping and Ho Chunk Gaming.
Meeting planners that want to plan a conference or a meeting at Devil’s Head can book space at the resort’s 20,000-square-foot convention center, which can accommodate groups of 20 to 600 people. The center overlooks the entire ski hill and serves as the ski resort cafeteria during the winter months. There are 250 hotel rooms at the resort, as well as three-bedroom condos with kitchens on the edge of the golf course.
Par 4 Resort
The Par 4 Resort is in Wisconsin’s Chain O’ Lakes area, with 22 connected spring-fed lakes. Glaciers carved deep ravines and left behind rolling hills, sandy plains and swift-moving rivers. Hartman Creek State Park offers many recreational opportunities, including biking, boating, canoeing, kayaking, hiking, horseback riding and swimming. Nearby Clear Water Harbor offers 1.5-hour narrated public and private boat cruises on the 60-foot paddle-wheeler Chief Waupaca or the Lady of the Lakes yacht. Groups can book a Sunday brunch tour, a local beer tasting or a fall colors cruise during which they can learn more about the history of the area.
The resort has an 18-hole Scottish links-style golf course at its Foxfire Golf Club that attracts many corporate and charity outings. There is an on-course beverage service, as well as a golf shop with shoes, shirts, clubs and souvenirs.
The resort has 5,000 square feet of meeting space. The Grand Ballroom is the largest space, able to accommodate groups of 350 people. The seasonal White House Tent can host groups of 225, and several smaller rooms can host groups of 30 to 180 people. Catering is available for all meals, including formal plated banquets and multiple-entree buffets. Discounted guest rooms are available at the Comfort Suites Par 4 Resort.
The resort plans to break ground on an expansion this winter that includes 6,000 square feet of banquet space and an additional 30 hotel rooms. Currently, the resort has 70 guest rooms.
The Lakewoods Resort has been a family-owned facility since 1907, attracting visitors who want to get away from the city and get out into nature. Located on Lake Namakagon in the 858,400-acre Chequamegon National Forest, the resort offers many water-based recreational activities like fishing, water skiing, sailing and boating. The town of Cable is nicknamed Trail Town USA, with trails for summer and winter sports including hiking, mountain biking, cross-country skiing, dogsledding, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, all-terrain vehicle driving and wildlife viewing.
The resort’s 18-hole Forest Ridges Golf Course can accommodate over 300 people with staggered tee times. Most visiting groups plan shotgun golf tournaments where all four-person groups of players tee off at the same time from different holes. The clubhouse has a bar and grill, so groups can plan cookouts or picnics on the patio overlooking the golf course or stay after their game for a steak dinner, a pig roast, or a fish or shrimp boil.
The resort has seven meeting rooms with 10,000 square feet of space that can host groups of up to 300 people for a banquet or 400 people theater-style. Food is provided on-site either through catering or through two restaurants, one at the Golf clubhouse and one in the main lodge. Outdoors, the facility can host groups of 800 or more.
“You can get a meeting room anywhere. People come here for the other amenities available,” said P.C. Rasmussen, owner of the resort, which has a full-service marina, tennis courts, pickleball courts, sand volleyball, sand beaches, and indoor and outdoor swimming pools.
Groups that host conferences at the property like to organize some of their breakout sessions outside or host cookouts for lunch. The resort has a patio space right on the water that is great for outdoor events.