Resident Feature

Bear’s Best Las Vegas

A Cornucopia of Nicklaus’ Best Holes

Bear’s Best Las Vegas is a collection of sensational holes selected by Jack Nicklaus from among his 390 courses throughout the world. Holes chosen from among Nicklaus’ most impressive designs include PGA West in Palm Springs, Desert Mountain in Scottsdale, Castle Pines in Colorado, La Paloma in Tucson, Palmilla in Cabo San Lucas and others. By borrowing from the past to create a new course, Bear’s Best is a fascinating golf experience. Located in an upscale neighborhood in the community of Summerlin, Bear’s Best is a high-end daily fee course and a must-play for serious golfers. 

Ranked #12 in Nevada, according to Golf Magazine. 

Many homes, including spectacularly impressive designs, surround each hole. On multiple holes, the Las Vegas Strip shines in the distance. The practice range grass area is relatively small. Hence, our warm up was on the mats. We enjoyed the firm and fast greens. 

Opening with a strong Par4, Hole #1 incorporates water down the entire left side. Modeled after Hole #6 at PGA West Nicklaus Private course, you need to bring a good tee shot to start the round. Modeled after Hole #1 at the Palmilla Mountain course in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, a giant waste bunker runs along the entire left side of Hole #6 eventually crossing the fairway immediately in front of the green. Ample green-side and fairway bunkers challenge many shots, but the sand was often shallow and hard. They perch some impressive homes on the course, especially on the back nine. 

Each hole marker shows the hole number and course modeled from Nicklaus’ private and public designs. Modeled after Hole #5 at the private Desert Mountain Chiricahua course in Scottsdale, see a distant view of the Las Vegas Strip from the teeing ground on the Par3 Hole #15. Modeled after Hole #18 of the Nicklaus Tournament Course at PGA West in Palm Springs, Bear’s Best closes with an extended Par4 with a vast waste bunker along the entire right side bordering a water hazard. 

At each tee, I reflected on whether I have ever played the modeled hole from Nicklaus? This made every hole uniquely satisfying. 

Bear’s Best Las Vegas is a fun Nicklaus course and a delight to play. 

Find High resolution photos at: destinations/bears-best-las-vegas 

If You Go: 

Course Info – Bear’s Best Las Vegas golf club is a high-end daily fee golf course. 

Location – Thirteen miles due west of the Las Vegas airport at the base of the Red Rock Canyon National Recreational Area. 

 Lodging – Plentiful hotels on the Strip, downtown or anywhere west of Las Vegas. 

Rates: From $89 to $259 

By Chuck Fox, Owner, Quintessential Golf, Resident since 2012 

Quintessential Golf ( 

A source of golf travel inspiration, Quintessential Golf online magazine spotlights the most spectacular, enduring and scenic courses, resorts and golf adventures. Written from a players point-of-view, articles include magnificent high-resolution course images. Brought to you by Chuck Fox, single-digit golfer, writer and photographer based in Danville, California, he is fulfilling his passion and dream to play, photograph and share the romance and beauty of golf throughout North America.