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April 1, 2017

Looks Do Matter

Carl’s Golfland’s recent renovation enhances the golfer experience with better visuals and an updated short game area

BY: DON JOZWIAK

The reason behind the recent $1.7 million renovation of the range at Carl’s Golfland in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, is all about looks. Not the appearance of the synthetic turf-covered range – though it certainly has visual appeal – but rather what golfers will see after they hit their shots at the bustling year-round facility.

“We wanted to create better visual landing areas from front to back and from all sides of the range,” says Pete Line, the longtime general manager at Carl’s Golfland. “We re-contoured the landing areas so we now have fewer blind spots, so you can see where the ball is landing on all kinds of shots–did your shot make it to your target, did it fly past it? The goal was a better customer experience for practice and for demoing clubs on a range that’s 60 stalls wide.”

The last major renovation on the Carl’s Golfland range at Bloomfield Hills – one of two locations for the renowned range and retail business in the golf-crazy Metro Detroit area – was nearly 20 years ago, and the once state-of-the-art synthetic range was in need of work. The ground beneath the turf was breaking down and becoming uneven, which led to maintenance and aesthetic issues.

Planning for the renovation started last February, with practice ranges from famed golf courses such as Augusta National, Bandon Dunes and Pine Valley serving as inspiration. Construction started in September, and the range was back online by mid-November. Beyond the visual upgrades, a seventh target green was added nearly 250 yards out from the tee line.

“Creating a practice green 250 yards out gives golfers a good visual reference for how far their drives are going,” says Line, who has worked at Carl’s Golfland for 36 years. “It’s been very popular so far.”

Thousands of golfers hit balls at Carl’s Golfland each month, and the facility continually improves services for consumers. A new natural turf short-game area will open soon to give golfers another practice option, and the main range has added chipping nets to work on scoring shots. The facility’s Launch Pad clubfitting area offers four yearround hitting bays with TrackMan launch monitors, while PGA Professionals provide lessons and fittings.

“We’re always striving to create a better customer experience,” Line says. “The feedback has been tremendous. People can really practice in whatever way works best for them, and that can really help their games.”