Waynesville Inn sold, will see extensive rehab

An iconic Waynesville landmark sold for nearly $9 million last week, but the new owner’s plans to renovate the 165-acre property, the 111-room hotel and the 27-hole golf course will also become one of the area’s most significant economic development investments — more than $25 million — once it’s completed.

On the upswing: Golf industry changes with the times

Golf is more than a game in Western North Carolina — the wellbeing of the popular past time can be a major indicator of how the regional economy is doing as far as real estate and tourism growth. 

The golf industry — like many others — took a major hit following the recession in 2008. Many courses went bankrupt and closed down, people couldn’t afford to play the game as often, and home building within the country clubs came to a standstill. Even in 2017, more than 200 golf courses across the nation closed as the supply and demand pendulum continues to swing its way back toward the center following 20 years of unsustainable growth. 

Golf’s prodigal son gets some redemption

Twenty years ago, a friend and I would get together on the weekends of the major golf tournaments and bet an enormous Japanese take-out meal on whether Tiger Woods would win against the field. He would take Tiger and I would take the field. If you know anything at all about golf, that bet is nearly unimaginable — one golfer against 156 of the best players in the world — but Tiger Woods was so dominant in those days that the odds seemed just about even that he would win any given tournament, especially the big ones like the Masters and the U.S Open. I won a few of those bets, but I also paid for quite a few of those prodigious meals.

Golf tourney a win for charity

The Maggie Valley Lions Club raised more than $10,000 for local charities with its 10th annual Golf Tournament and Silent Auction held Thursday, Aug. 23. 

Golf courses

In this mountain region, there are a handful of top-notch public courses, including the Sequoyah National in Cherokee (designed by Robert Trent Jones II) and the historic 27 holes at Waynesville Inn, Golf Resort and Spa. In the Cashiers area of Jackson County, the scenic High Hampton Inn is regarded as one of the most picturesque courses in the country. Other courses include:

The Waynesville Inn, Golf Resort & Spa

travel wciWhen asked why he loves Western North Carolina, Travis Smith had to pause for a moment. “Well, that’s a good question,” he chuckled. “It’s special to me because I’ve been here most of my life. I love the mountains, the people. You’re away from the cities, from all the traffic and noise.”

Girls got game

out natcornThe Lake Junaluska Girls Junior Golf Association enjoyed a special play day and celebration Saturday, Aug. 9. LJGJGA members and their parents enjoyed a fun family nine-hole play day followed by a cookout at the Lake Junaluska Pro Shop/Clubhouse to honor recipients of the Laura Constance Golf Scholarship.

Forest Hills doesn’t have the green to buy abandoned golf course

Forest Hills residents and town leaders overwhelmingly opposed purchasing a 60-acre abandoned golf course in the middle of their community at a public hearing last week.

Will Forest Hills residents chip in to buy old, overgrown golf course?

Presented with a tempting yet expensive offer, the Village of Forest Hills has to choose whether to buy an abandoned golf course in the center of its small community, or stand by and watch it be developed.

Swingin’ for the Smokies

travel golfCraig Hartle just might have the best job in Western North Carolina.

The head golf professional for High Hampton Inn and Country Club in Cashiers, Hartle spends his days instructing any and all visitors ready to step foot on the majestic 18-hole course that snakes through the rich and varied landscape of the Southern Appalachians.

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