It comes in three sizes—executive (9 feet tall by 12 feet wide), standard (10 by 14) and championship (11 by 15).
The course is displayed on a projector screen that doubles as a high-definition TV, which means home users can use one room for the simulator and a home theater. The simulator doesn’t require any special construction in the room.Golfers hit the ball off a driving range mat and into the screen. They also putt toward the screen on an artificial turf surface.
HD Golf offers about 20 courses, most of which are part of Sun Valley’s machine—Pebble Beach, Spyglass Hill, Pinehurst No. 2, Bayhill, Harbour Town, Kiawah Island, Troon North, Banff Springs, Torrey Pines, Doral Blue Monster, Casa de Campo, Spanish Bay and Bethpage Black among them.The machine also offers several driving range options, for warmup, practice and lessons.
Petersen compared the experience to the rest of Sun Valley’s famous offerings.
“We can talk about how good the golf courses are, how good Bald Mountain is, but . . . once you see it, it really puts a new light on it,” Petersen says.
The machine is run by a touch-screen computer. It’s user-friendly and requires virtually no maintenance.
A player can knock out 18 holes in 60 to 90 minutes, Petersen explains. The pace of play decreases with each additional player—just like real golf. It takes about four hours for a foursome to play 18, Petersen says.
Sun Valley rents its HD Golf suite by the hour. It’s $30 for one hour, $50 for two hours, $60 for three hours and $70 for four hours—with all rates per person.
Play has been steady, so Petersen recommends calling ahead for a tee time. Again, just like the real thing.
“It has far exceeded my expectations of what I thought we were going to do with it,” Petersen says.
And he’s not just talking about guests. The staff has gotten a kick out of HD Golf, too.
“I’ve played more golf this winter than I ever do in the summer time. It’s been very welcome on our professional end.”
Want to play? Want to buy one?
Call the Sun Valley Resort golf shop
at 208.622.2251 for a reservation.
Or visit www.istgolf.com for more information on HD Golf purchases.
Photography Courtesy Sun Valley Resort
Text Chadd Cripe