Sunday, March 12, 2017
A Resort with Some History
One recent July, I decided to take a long drive around the very southern part of my state of Arizona. I traveled to many towns that I don't visit very often. Late in the afternoon I pulled into the Tubac Golf Resort on the spur of the moment and checked to see if they had any rooms available. They did and at summer rates that were too good to pass up. So, after settling in to my rather sumptuous room, I decided to do a little exploring.
At the time, I didn't realize that I had stumbled on to such a historic place. The resort sits on a piece of property that was once part of a very large ranch and that ranch dates back to 1789. In America, that's a very long time ago. The land was granted to Don Torbio de Otero by King Charles IV of Spain. This was at a time when the Spanish ruled parts of the southern half of our state and Mexico.
In 1853 the land was brought into the United States as part of the Gadsden Purchase. By this time, the ranch was being run by Otero's grandson who traveled back to Mexico and learned how to raise cattle. He returned to the ranch and introduced cattle to the property, making the ranch the home to one of the largest cattle empires in Arizona.
Remnants of the ranching days still remain on the property like the above silo and old wagons and other relics of the era. The property remained in the Otero family until 1941.
In 1959, a group of businessmen headed by singing legend Bing Crosby, acquired the ranch and began the operation that is today the Tubac Golf Resort and Spa.
The new owners were careful to preserve the historic integrity of the land and buildings on it. Today, the influence of the original owners can be felt throughout the property.
When I went to dinner at one of the restaurants on the property, I had a spectacular view of the golf course and the beautiful mountains in the distance. I'm not a golfer but, I can see why any avid golfer would be drawn to such a beautiful place to play the game.
I would have to warn those golfers that they will have to play around a few cattle who still roam the property. I've been told that the cattle tolerate the golfers and the golfers are careful not to drive any balls in their direction.