Golf was a big part of my life growing up. My dad golfed at least once a week, and if there was a tournament on TV, we all watched it while having Sunday dinner. We often went to the local pitch-and-putt but in those years I never took the opportunity to play a full 18-hole round of golf.
On a trip to Florida last month, I was hosted at Streamsong Resort, located about an hour-and-a-half southeast of Tampa, an area known for its golf courses. The 16,000-acre property, set on a former phosphate-mining site, boasts three world-class golf courses—but fortunately for me it also has 25 lakes, a spa, and activities such as sporting clay, archery and bass fishing. If you’re looking to just unwind and relax, there’s an infinity pool overlooking the water. These are all great options if golf isn’t your sport.
The main building at Streamsong features 216 rooms, two restaurants, a spa, and a gift shop. There are also a few conference rooms, which offer video screens and conference lines and can be combined with other rooms depending on the size of the group. I was greeted outside on arrival and was escorted through a seamless check-in process. The staff are friendly and accommodating; I forgot a few amenities, which they were able to provide for me.
The rooms are spacious and airy, with floor to ceiling windows. Mine boasted a view of the lake. It was divided by a center desk with ample space to work and featured a charging station and two TVs: one facing the bed and the other facing the sofa, perfect for multitasking and watching two different shows. The spacious bathroom had two sinks and a large shower. My favorite part of the room was the mini library, with carefully selected classics (“To Kill a Mockingbird” being one). Just be sure to put each book back in its original place as the bookshelf was designed around the books.
Activities beyond the golf courses
Over the course of the long weekend, I opted in for a few non-golf activities, all guided. The resort is in a remote location (there’s nothing around it for miles), so there are quite a few ways to keep busy on property, even without stepping onto one of the three golf courses. Here are five:
1. Get a treatment at AcquaPietra Spa
I’ve never been one to pass up a spa treatment, and my time at AcquaPietra Spa was one of my favorite activities at Streamsong. The grotto-style spa is located in the main building and was a short walk from my room. Guests are encouraged to arrive a few minutes early for registration but also to relax and take advantage of the spa’s relaxation pools and steam rooms. The relaxation pools have varying temperatures and are marked by the steps leading into the pool. My 50-minute Swedish massage was relaxing and helped me unwind, but there are plenty more options listed on the Streamsong website.
2. Go clay shooting
There are 12 clay shooting stations at Streamsong Resort. Sporting clay takes place a short distance from the main building at Streamsong, still on property but away from the golf courses. I’ve gone clay shooting before, and this was a fun chance to pick up the shotgun and practice again. I really enjoyed the various stations and differing clay angles. There were even some low-lying clay shooting stations, which I found unique.
3. Do archery
My guide—as with sporting clay—was patient managing the various levels of experience in my group, from novice to expert shot. Tips and techniques, including to help participants hold the bow and hit the target, made things simple.
4. Go bass fishing
I’ve never been fishing, so bass fishing at Streamsong was quite an experience for me. My group’s guide took us out on the boat and found a good spot for us to try to catch some fish. While we all got a few bites, we came away empty. I have new appreciation for those who spend the day fishing.
5. Swim (and drink) in the infinity pool
Outside the main building is a heated infinity pool with cabanas and beach chairs, overlooking the lake. There’s also a pool bar, which is great for cocktails and snacks while you’re enjoying the sun. Another fun feature is a golf hole in the lake, 66 yards away from a tee box near the pool. The green is quite new and protected. Apparently, alligators would appear on the previous green and sun themselves. Imagine getting that hole-in-one!
Food & drink
In addition to the pool bar and café on the golf courses, Streamsong boasts four restaurants, all quite unique:
Restaurant Fifty-Nine is located at the Streamsong clubhouse, and so it offers great views of the golf courses. There’s a side room offering privacy for a client dinner or party, and a back patio on which to watch the sunset in between meals.
P2O5—named for the phosphorous pentoxide, which comes from the element phosphate that was previously mined on the land—is located in the main building and is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Breakfast features a la carte options as well as an extensive buffet selection with an omelet station. Lunch options include great salads and burgers.
3. Bone Valley Tavern
Bone Valley Tavern boasts 360-degree views of the golf course and a patio for dining outside and watching the sun set. “BVT,” as it’s nicknamed, offers an extensive menu featuring pub appetizers, soups, sandwiches, salads, and burgers.
SottoTerra is located downstairs in the main building and is the resort’s flagship restaurant. It’s only open for dinner. The menu features selected entrees and pasta, and once dinner is over, you can head upstairs to the rooftop bar for a late-night drink before heading to sleep.
You’re a captive audience at Streamsong Resort but the resort offers so many activities that you tend to forget the outside world and enjoy the tranquility and calmness of nature. Even if you’re not a golfer.
I did manage to squeeze in a golf lesson and practice my chipping and putting, but I left the full courses to better players. I’ll just need to practice my swing before my next visit.
For more on Streamsong Resort, including pricing and packages, visit streamsongresort.com.