Resort Report: Omni Barton Creek Resort
Just imagine how the land west of Austin looked 150 years ago. Spring-fed Barton Creek served as a rest stop on a dusty trail for settlers, ranchers and cattle heading to the railhead in Austin from 1866 to 1886 from western counties.
Just imagine how the land west of Austin looked 150 years ago. Spring-fed Barton Creek served as a rest stop on a dusty trail for settlers, ranchers and cattle heading to the railhead in Austin from 1866 to 1886 from western counties. The water was cool and thirsty longhorns stopped to refuel and rest under live oaks, madrone, redbud, elm, cedar, pecan, cottonwood, and hackberry trees and lay on grasses of wild grama and bluestem. Today that landscape includes limestone cliffs, thick foliage and the beautiful creek that snakes through and recharges the Edwards Aquifer. And from this Texas Hill Country beauty sprang Omni Barton Creek Resort & Spa -- a golf getaway in the Lone Star state that boasts four rocky, rugged outstanding golf courses you won’t forget.
Beginning of an acclaimed golf resort Omni Barton Creek Resort & Spa’s doors officially opened September 5, 1987, with former First Lady Lady Bird Johnson in attendance for the grand opening. The vision of an upscale country club was shared and aided by former Texas Gov. John Connolly and former Lieutenant Governor Ben Barnes. Golfers from around the globe got introduced to its beauty when the Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf (Champions Tour) Tournament was televised, making Omni Barton Creek an even more popular travel golf destination. Legendary University of Texas football coach Darrel Royal was a founding member and was often seen drinking his morning coffee in the lobby enjoying the day’s newspaper. The ballroom is named in his honor. Former President George W. Bush often said Barton Creek was his favorite place to play and his dad also teed it up along with Willie Nelson and Heisman Trophy winner Earl Campbell.
Fazio, Crenshaw and Palmer put stamp on upscale golf In 1986 Omni Barton Creek Resort & Spa opened the first Tom Faziodesigned course in Texas, now named Fazio Foothills, and added a second, Fazio Canyons, in 2000 to become the only resort in state with two Fazio courses. “The Fazio Canyons course design meets environmental standards while offering challenging layouts set against the backdrop of the panoramic Texas Hill Country,” said Tom Fazio. “We believe it has great potential as a nationally ranked contender and is a great complement to Barton Creek’s three existing courses.” It also has golf courses designed by Austin native Ben Crenshaw named Crenshaw Cliffside in 1991, and Arnold Palmer named Palmer Lakeside in 1986, which is 25 miles away. So what are the characteristics that make the two Fazio courses, built more than a decade apart shine?