Buddy Golf Trips: Create The Perfect Golf Getaway

Tyler Mishler joined Pine Needles & Mid Pines in January 2016 as a member of the Golf Operations staff.  In March, he was promoted to Social and Golf Group Sales Manager. An avid golfer, Mishler assists golf groups to build the perfect golf getaway.

Why is Pine Needles & Mid Pines a popular destination for buddy golf trips?

One of the main reasons groups come to Pine Needles and Mid Pines is the rich history. Pine Needles has hosted three U.S. Women’s Opens and will host the upcoming Senior Women’s Open. It’s also known for Peggy Kirk Bell’s renowned Golfari golf instruction schools. At Mid Pines, we annually host the U.S. Kids World Championships, the Hickory Open and countless other amateur events. These hallways are full of stories.

We offer a variety of resort options for golf groups. First, we customize each stay-and-play package to create the perfect getaway for your group. Besides the traditional inn and lodge accommodations, we also offer private Villas , overlooking the 10th fairway at Mid Pines, and Lodges, overlooking the 18th hole and driving range at Pine Needles. Villas and Lodges are within walking distance to the clubhouse, dining and meeting facilities. We also offer a Lodge with private driving range.

What makes this resort a unique destination?

Our golf courses bring championship-level toughness. Both Mid Pines and Pine Needles are ranked in the Top 100, and offer play-ability for a very enjoyable round for everyone. There is a culture captured here that is very family-friendly. From the moment you step on property, you’re greeted with a personable staff that makes you feel at home.

You work with a lot of groups returning year after year for 5, 10, 20 years. What is the reaction you get from first-time groups?

First-time guests always comment on the quality of our courses. They love the challenges of both Pine Needles and Mid Pines. But, what I hear over and over, is how much they love how they’re treated here. They really feel at home. It’s easy to relax here. And, that’s why people come back time and time again, year after year.  

How do you work with groups to find the right package, the right accommodations to plan the right trip?

I typically work with groups of 16 or more. Groups of this size allow me to customize a package and cater to their needs. We offer lodges and villas to our golf groups, which allow a group to reside in a link-side private home with common area, back deck or patio and the option to hold a cookout at the residence. It allows the group to stay together in a private residence with spectacular views of the course. It’s very convenient for the group. We can customize a package to suit their needs (meals, buffets, boxed lunches, breakfast, unlimited golf, etc.).

View from Mid Pines Villas

What is the reaction from golf groups when they arrive? 

In most instances, I have been working with the group from the very first phone call to plan the perfect golf trip. They’re excited for the trip; to golf, relax or catch up with friends. By the time they get here, I’m excited for their trip to begin. The anticipation has been building. Pine Needles and Mid Pines has a long history and tradition. Our guests really embrace it.

What advice do you offer golf groups as they head out to Pine Needles and Mid Pines?

With recent restorations to both courses, I like to point out some of the changes they’ll encounter and then ask if they noticed a difference. Kyle Franz added a bunker to Pine Needles’ 1st Hole. Do they notice? What do they experience differently?

With two Donald Ross courses, I remind them of what they will notice on the courses: false fronts, turtleback greens.

Pine Needles is the more forgiving course. If they have a higher handicap, I steer them toward Pine Needles. It’s more enjoyable for the casual golfer. Mid Pines is a challenge. It is the more tournament-style, difficult golf course.  

A tip on Mid Pines… the greens slope towards Hole #3. That’s where the lake used to be, just past the 3rd hole. It’s the lowest elevation there. You’ll notice many of the greens – if not all of them – slope towards that hole.

Mid Pines #15

What are some of the favorite holes on the courses?

Well, my favorite holes are going to have to have a great view.

At Mid Pines,  #15 is a favorite. It is an awesome, long par-5. When the azaleas are blooming, it’s pretty awesome. After the tee shot, you are able to see a good deal of the course. You’re sitting on top of a hill, on top of the course. There are some great views of the rest of Mid Pines.

With the recent restoration at Pine Needles, a favorite hole is #2. There’s so much history at the 2nd Hole. The old Pine Needles hotel, now Pine Knoll, sits just behind you as you tee off. The re-bunkering adds more character to the tee shot, as well as, the downhill approach shot coming onto the green. At the same time, it’s not an easy green to approach. If you don’t hit it right, you will go all the way off the back. As you look back from the green, you can see a gorgeous view. It’s just an awesome hole.

To learn more about our customized golf packages, complete a Group Inquiry Form or call 800-747-7272.

Holes #3, Pine Needles

Named Golf Channel's Top 25 Favorite Public Courses