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Florida golf course review


Mission Inn - located just 1/2 hour NW of Orlando in Howey-in-the-Hills, is a remarkable golf destination, featuring two championship golf courses developed in Florida's most beautiful terrain. In a setting adorned with Spanish architecture, spring fed lakes and historic oaks, The El Campeon and Las Colinas Courses provide 36 holes of golf unparalleled in Central Florida. A review of El Campeon is featured below.

Mission Inn Resort 06- El Campeon Course

This privately owned and operated estate sprawls over 625 acres that are nestled in the hills, and includes upscale accommodations along with amenities expected at a top scale resort. A variety of standard rooms and suites (200 total) are located in prime location to the pool/Jacuzzi area, and within walking distance of the hotel's main dining area and meeting facilities. Additionally, gorgeous villas that are privately owned are leased back to Mission Inn for rental - and are available to the public. The El Conquistador Restaurant is under new management, and serves impeccable meals (dinner only) in a beautiful setting - at affordable prices with extraordinary service, and is complimented by the Hacienda Café which is open daily for breakfast and lunch. Sunday brunch is also served at Hacienda, and Nickers at the clubhouse serves a great lunch/dinner menu, as well as a spectacular Saturday evening seafood buffet. Meeting and banquet rooms are abundant, and one can spend hours walking the manicured grounds, admiring the ornate architecture and serene beauty of Mission Inn.  For more info on the resort, visit our Florida or Orlando resort listing sections and visit the page we have developed for Mission Inn Golf and Tennis Resort.


Mission Inn Resort 06 - El Campeon Course

The golf courses feature terrain unique to Central Florida, with rolling hills and frequent elevation changes. Also present are abundant cypress trees and tropical foliage, with lakes and natural areas. Players will find wonderful conditioning from tee to green, and ample informational systems on each course. Each tee area provides measurements to the center of the green, 100/150/200 yardage blocks are present on the fairways, and 150 yard stakes are also visible. Pin placement sheets are posted on every cart, with the 3 hole locations on the small greens rotating on a daily basis. The practice facility includes a grass range and spacious putting green that services both layouts.


Mission Inn Resort 06 - El Campeon Course


El Campeon has garnered many national awards and is annually recognized as one of the top 25 golf courses in Florida. The course was originally designed in 1926 by Charles E Clarke of Troon, Scotland, as has since been renovated. With elevation changes of up to 85 feet and numerous water hazards (on 13 of the 18 holes), El Campeon is a challenge for even the seasoned golfers. Players of all abilities can enjoy a resort golf experience however, as the design provides five sets of tees. The tips play to 6923 yards with a 135 slope, and the remaining tee areas measure: blues 6481/133, whites 6235/132, golds 5608/122 , reds 4811/119. There are a significant number of mild doglegs bending in either direction, with water hazards often dictating the routing.


Mission Inn Resort 06 - El Campeon Course

The opening hole is an attention-grabber , as the tee shot must carry a creek along a fairway that narrows considerable on the approach, to a putting surface with ponds to the right and left. The second is a beautiful par three with water on either side short of the elevated green, and bunkers also protecting. Number three invites a tee shot to the left side of the fairway, as trees along the right can make approached difficult. Long hitters have to be careful not to drive through the fairway into the large bunker along the right side. A raised putting surface that quickly drops off creates the need for a high arcing approach. There is a considerable carry over a lake on four, with the approach playing entirely uphill - take  two clubs extra on the approach to the back to front sloped green. The fifth is a pretty par four with a fairway that slopes noticeably right to left. Aim for the right side here and aim for the pin, as this elevated green is severely undulating. Another elevated fairway with significant bunkering on both sides awaits on six - which plays longer than the advertised yardage. Seven is a great golf hole - and the number two handicap. A shot hugging the right side will leave a clear but long approach over the creek which runs across the fairway about 165 out. There is not much room for error on the par three 8th which plays over water to a peninsula green. A shot aimed just left of the front bunker will hopefully yield good results. The closing hole on the front is a short and simple par four - with out of bounds along the right, Avoid the fairway and green-side traps and this is the easiest hole on the course.


Mission Inn Resort 06 - El Campeon Course

The par five 10th is demanding from the tips, with the whites playing about 80 yards shorter. This dogleg right has a water hazard that runs the length of the hole along that side. A large oak guards the dogleg - and must be taken into consideration. Aim left and the hole plays considerably longer - go right and the hole shortens but the second shot is over water. Eleven bends in the opposite direction and demands an accurate approach with grass swales on either side of the green. The twelfth is a well bunkered par three that requires careful club selection, as it plays longer than the yardage indicates. This is followed by a short par four that begins from an island tee and plays over a pond with an eighty five foot climb to the green. As with hole # 4 which plays adjacent, the approach requires two extra clubs to a putting surface that slopes back to front. Fourteen plays back downhill to a narrow fairway with a water hazard guarding the dogleg (right) near the 200 yard marker. The 15th is a pretty par three over water to a peninsula green with ample bail out room to the right, and precedes the shortest par four of the layout. A lay up off the tee to about 100 yards out is the recommended play - and the approach will demand extreme accuracy as the island green is nearly surrounded by a bunker.  The "Devil's Delight" is next - the signature hole of El Campeon. This is the tightest hole on the course - a double dogleg with tall trees defining the fairway. Once you get close, you will find a tall oak sitting in the most in-opportune location, protecting the green from many angles. The approach must avoid the oak, and carry a significant water hazard - with very little room long - an extremely tough hole! Save your high scores for this one. The last is also a challenge - and the number 3 handicap. Cut off as much as you are able on this dogleg right over water. You can check out the 150 yard stake near the water to gauge your preferred distance and location off the tee. The green here is long and undulating, and par is a great score.


Mission Inn Resort 06 - El Campeon Course

El Campeon is a pure and premier golfing experience - with little residential development and abundant wildlife. Golfers will have to play their best to score well, but all levels of players will delight in the serene setting. If you are looking for a quiet place away from the hustle and bustle of Orlando's popular attractions and resorts (and traffic) - then Mission Inn fits the bill and is highly recommended!

Mission Inn Resort 06 - El Campeon Course

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