The epitome of a luxury golf resort experience in Miami and South Florida continues to be the J.W. Marriott Miami Turnberry Resort & Spa. Located in the trendy north Miami enclave of Aventura, the 685-room property has been a landmark SoFla resort since it opened in 1967. From spa to golf to fine dining to the Tidal Cove water park, J.W. Marriott Miami Turnberry takes luxury seriously for its members and resort guests
“We know a lot of our repeat guests and obviously the members,’’ said Sean Olson, Turnberry’s head golf professional and golf operations manager. “A lot of guests we see every year. They know our names and we know their names. This is just a luxurious family experience for everyone to enjoy.’’
Let’s begin with Turnberry’s two outstanding golf courses. The Miller (6,100 yards, par 70), originally designed by Robert Trent Jones, Sr., is a quintessential South Florida layout. Renovated by Raymond Floyd, the Miller required some precision shot-making as it winds through Platinum Paspalum fairways lined by mature ficus, banyan, and olive trees.
The Soffer course, designed by Floyd, is a “must play’’ among Florida resort courses. Named in honor of resort founder Donald Soffer, the Soffer is loaded with personality. Its waterfalls and combination of colorful plants and native trees create picture-esque sight lines, and its contoured greens makes you pay attention to every putt.
One of the more interesting features to the Soffer Course (7,000 yards, par 72) is one that golfers can’t see. The bunkers have been rebuilt with a Capillary Concrete liner system designed to help prevent washouts. Simply put, the “capillaries’ drain water away from the middle of the bunker and prevent standing water in much the same way they prevent standing water on airport runways.
The liner system might not seem important in the winter months, but in South Florida’s rainy spring and summer seasons, it’s often the difference that makes the course playable or not. And it’s another example of attention to detail that thrives throughout the resort.
Also, Turnberry’s double-sided driving range provides ample space for the resort’s golf instructors to work with members and guests.
“Our tournament programs and our member programs each have gotten stronger,’’ Olson said. “Our members’ programs are more competitive than they’ve ever been.
“We have gained so many members during Covid. I think people are looking for something outside of the big city areas. Obviously, Miami is a big city, but it’s more of a vacation spot. And we’re gaining younger members, which is nice.’’
At least some of that younger membership – golf and otherwise – no doubt has been driven by Tidal Cove, a five-acre water park that features a 60-foot tower with seven water slides, a 4,000-square-foot kids pool with an aquatic play structure, the first-ever FlowRider Triple surf-simulation pool in the nation, and an additional VIP pool area for adults.
To say that Tidal Cove – open year-round to Turnberry members, resort guests and the general public – sets the standard for water parks in South Florida would be an understatement.
The same is true of Michael Mina’s Bourbon Steak – the resort’s signature restaurant that is one of Florida’s top-dining experiences for steak and seafood. That said, don’t pass on the duck fat fries accompanied by three flavors of sauces..
And if you’re looking to spend only one day at J.W. Marriott Miami Turnberry, consider the combination of Sunday Brunch at CORSAIR Kitchen & Bar followed by an afternoon of golf or at Tidal Cove. If neither of those amenities fit your needs, the resort’s âme Spa & Wellness Collective provides some of the top spa treatments in South Florida.
A good way to begin (for men and women) is the spa’s Wellness Circuit, which features three stops.
The first stop is in the aroma and music therapy steam room; second stop is the Himalayan Salt Room; and the final stop is the spa’s signature Swiss Shower.
Again, the epitome of luxury. That’s what J.W Marriott Miami Turnberry Resort & Spa is all about.