When the PGA Tour returns to Marana, Ariz., in February for the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship in February, the players and sponsors will have some new accommodations.
The 250-room Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain is scheduled to open in December, complementing the 27 holes of golf (pictured) designed by Jack Nicklaus.
Set in the foothills of the Tortolita Mountains northwest of Tucson, the Ritz-Carlton plans to celebrate its high-desert setting while also providing all of the amenities that are de rigueur at luxury resorts.
Amenities at the resort, located on a former cattle ranch, will include Old West cattle penning, horseback riding and desert jeep tours. But there also will be more conventional fare: three swimming pools, a 235-foot water slide and, most notably, a 17,000-square-foot spa with 14 treatment rooms.
“We could do this resort without golf and it would still be spectacular,” says Stephen Deucker, the resort’s sales and marketing director.
In the planning and construction process, Ritz-Carlton has tried to incorporate elements from the high-desert setting. Spa treatments pay homage to the Sonoran lifestyle, and the physical structure uses many indigenous materials, such as wood beams, mesquite and mosaic bathroom tiles made in Arizona.
“It’s going to blend right in with the desert landscape,” Deucker says.
The 27 holes of golf at Dove Mountain (see “A desert beauty,” Golfweek, Feb. 14, 2009) have been generally well received, though Nicklaus returned following the 2009 Match Play to soften the severe green surfaces.