Talking GolfGetaways 68: Bandon Dunes’ Jeff Simonds takes a swing at the Emergency 9

Talking GolfGetaways 68: Bandon Dunes’ Jeff Simonds takes a swing at the Emergency 9 golf-travel quiz

Jeff Simonds has Bucket List dreams (like Cabot Links) beyond his home of Bandon Dunes (Photo by Brian Oar / Golf News Net)

This “Talking GolfGetaways” Emergency 9 golf-travel questionnaire finds hosts Mitch Laurance and Darin Bunch going deep into the golfing soul of Jeff Simonds, director of golf at Oregon’s iconic Bandon Dunes Resort. As a former college golfer and the passionate and well-traveled leader of one of the world’s greatest golf destinations, Jeff is a perfect subject to share his thoughts on our most-asked golf-travel queries.

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When it comes to Favorite Course or Destination Anywhere in the World” it’s no surprise that Bandon Dunes Resort tops Jeff’s list. But you’ll also hear why the Old Course in St. Andrews ranks next highest — and why its combination of nerves, fun and long history over the centuries make it special.

What about a Bucket List destination for someone who already works at a Bucket Lister for most other golfers? Jeff unveils one destination that’s in his golfing sights — the spectacular twosome of Cabot Links and Cabot Cliffs on Nova Scotia’s Cape Breton Island. You’ll find out why Jeff is anxious to grab another classic links experience at this Canadian outpost, and how he already knows it will tie him even more to the daily joy he finds at Bandon.

Best Thing He’s Ever Eaten on a Trip? Try famous Chicago restaurant Gibson’s Bar & Steakhouse with its Porterhouse steak drawing a rave post-36-holes review. Meanwhile, his answer to Most Important Thing, Besides Golf, on a Trip boils down, like many, to the people you play — understandable from someone who’s life is dedicated to making golf a pure “people experience” at Bandon Dunes.

Next up, find out why Adidas shoes (“they feel like you’re walking on a cloud”) get the nod for Simonds’ Most Important Piece of Apparel; plus why a scratch golfer like Jeff is willing to tee it up “all over the place” to get maximum enjoyment from the game; why his wife Marie, a former college golfer herself, is his favorite playing partner (and why competition between them is still the driver of their golf engine); and why he also relishes teeing it up with anyone playing Bandon Dunes for the first time “just to see the look on their faces.”

Finally, Jeff explains the tremendous pull of the One Course He Wishes Everyone Knew About — the iconic West Course at North Berwick in Scotland, a fitting choice given the connections to our game’s history and tradition you’ll find at Bandon Dunes.

All in all, an interesting and engaging Emergency 9 from Jeff Simonds, one of our game’s finest ambassadors and another reason to make Bandon Dunes Resort a must-play destination.

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“Talking GolfGetaways with Mitch Laurance & Darin Bunch” can be found on and across the Golf News Net platform. New episodes post daily (for the most part, except when we’re traveling or golfing or generally having other kinds of fun), and “Talking GolfGetaways” is also available on audioBoom, iTunes and Stitcher.

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About the author



The GolfGetaways crew of Darin Bunch and Mitch Lauarance have decades of golf travels and adventures to share, which they do here at GNN, on their "Talking GolfGetaways" podcast and on their social media channels. You can find them usually playing hickories and having a great time taking in amazing architecture, scenery and company.