Wisconsin has major travel news this year. The U.S. Open comes to the state for the first time in the tournament’s history, to a public course, no less. Natural Twosome – Golf and B&Bs The 117th U.S. Open is being played at Erin Hills in Wisconsin, marking the first time the storied event has ever been staged in the state. Plus it’s only the sixth time it’s being played at a public course. We put together a list of the Top 10 Wisconsin public golf courses (and the B&Bs nearby, naturally) to help you tee up your golf getaway bucket list.
There are more than 500 public golf courses in Wisconsin. Multiple PGA and LPGA tournaments have been contested at public courses at Kohler. Plus, the U.S. Open comes to Erin Hills in Wisconsin, the first time this storied event has ever been staged in the state and only the sixth time at a public course. And this just in: Wisconsin is ranked the #1 golf destination for 2017 by GolfAdvisor.com! So, if there was ever a year to celebrate golf, this is it, which is why the Wisconsin Bed & Breakfast Association put together its own list of top public courses based on travel habits at its member inns. While Erin Hills is closed until after the U.S. Open, there are plenty of top-notch golf getaways for those eager to tee up their summer travel schedule. Top 10 Contenders for Best Golf/B&B Getaways
- Whistling Straits, Sheboygan: This course will be hosting the 2020 Ryder Cup. Stay at Lake Orchard Farm Retreat on the shores of Lake Michigan, a sixth generation farm with its own on-site nine-hole golf course and clubhouse. [caption id="attachment_1757" align="alignnone" width="300"] Lake Orchard Farm Retreat Guest room[/caption]
- Blackwolf Run, Kohler: Spend the night at the nearby Jay Lee Inn in Elklhart Lake, an elegant 1902 Victorian Federal house with views to the lake. There’s also Tauschek’s B&B in Plymouth, a log home with rustic charm and modern amenities. [caption id="attachment_1758" align="alignright" width="300"] Tauschek' Bed & Breakfast[/caption]
- University Ridge, Madison: The three inns in Madison each have their own unique personality, much like the city itself. There’s The Buckingham Inn near Camp Randall Stadium with red naturally a favorite accent color, Hotel Ruby Marie where you can enjoy the bustle of the Capitol Square, and The Livingston Inn Gothic Revival mansion with lakefront access to Lake Mendota.
- Lawsonia, Green Lake: Take your pick of four B&Bs in the resort community of Green Lake – Miller’s Daughter B&B where complimentary wine is served daily, McConnell Inn where breakfast is prepared by their pastry chef, the lakefront Angel Inn with parking for your boat, or Greenway House where guests can enjoy breakfast on the wraparound porch.
- SentryWorld, Stevens Point: After a day on the course, spend the night at Dreams of Yesteryear, an architectural gem in Stevens Point’s historic downtown district, and wake up to a full gourmet breakfast before heading back to the course for another round of golf.
- The Bull, Sheboygan Falls: Choose a two-story suite at the Rochester Inn or, if traveling with your golf buddies, reserve The Fringe Country Inn and gather in the spacious common room. Both are right in Sheboygan Falls.
- Horseshoe Bay, Egg Harbor: There are lots of charming B&Bs up and down the Door County peninsula. [caption id="attachment_1759" align="alignnone" width="300"] Bay Point Inn[/caption] In the same community as the course is Bay Point Inn, patterned after a European vacation villa.
- Washington County, Hartford: The Westphal Mansion Inn, an English Tudor mansion in downtown Hartford, is a local historic landmark with plenty of old world style. [caption id="attachment_1763" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Westphal Mansion guest room[/caption]
- The Bog, Saukville: A short drive will get you to Hidden Serenity B&B in West Bend, a spacious inn next to a wildlife sanctuary where there’s also a tennis court if you also like to swing a racquet.
- Geneva National, Lake Geneva: This is the site of the 2017 Legends LPGA. If you typically travel with a group of golfer friends, reserve the entire home known as At The Lake House B&B. [caption id="attachment_1760" align="alignright" width="300"] Lazy Cloud Bed & Breakfast, Lake Geneva WI[/caption] Lazy Cloud B&B bills itself as a place for romantics so if you golf with your significant other, give this inn a try. Both are in Lake Geneva.
Bonus Recommendations: There are two other public courses in the state designed by the same duo who designed Erin Hills - Wild Rock in Wisconsin Dells and Troy Burne in Hudson. In Wisconsin Dells, retreat to Bowman’s Oak Hill B&B with its park-like setting where breakfast is served on the large deck. In Hudson, Phipps Inn is located in a historic district making it a short walk to downtown restaurants. Look Forward To: Sand Valley Golf Resort in Nekoosa is set to open in May, and is already getting lots of advance accolades. Less than an hour from the course is Artha Sustainable Living Center in Amherst, an eco-friendly inn set on a 55-acre plot with lots of greens, as in green fields and woodlands. Also just under an hour’s drive is Riverview B&B in Neshkoro, located on the White River, so bring your kayak along with your clubs. When Erin Hills Reopens to the Public: If you’ll be golfing Erin Hills after the U.S. Open, consider a stay at Inn at Pine Terrace in nearby Oconomowoc. The design of this historic mansion was modeled after a nobleman’s castle near Vienna, making it a fitting spot to spend the night when golfing one of the crown jewels of Wisconsin. Just as each golf course is unique and has it's own personality, so do the B&B's in the Wisconsin Bed & Breakfast Association. A great reason to plan a B&B getaway, where innkeepers are your ultimate concierge to all things local. Another important item to point out, WBBA members are licensed, inspected and insured. So rest assured, you will get a good night's sleep when you stay at a WBBA B&B, feeling refreshed and rejuvenated the next morning. Are you ready to Seek the Unique?