Last Updated on Saturday, 19 May 2012 14:30
Saturday, 19 May 2012 13:54
by Gord Montgomery
If you’re a golfer, and revel in golf history beyond the time some dude named Tiger showed up, then you’ll love a restaurant located in La Quinta, California, named after one of the game’s best ever players.
'Arnold Palmer’s' really doesn’t need much more of an introduction than that and when a golf fan walks into this Mecca of memorabilia you’re totally captivated by what’s on display.
The walls inside the bar/restaurant are lined with photos and artifacts and are a must-see for any fan of the game no matter how casual your approach may be.
And as we found out, it’s also not a bad place to eat when you’re in the Palm Springs/Coachella Valley area.
While attending the Nick Faldo Golf Institute my wife and I drove a short distance eastward and found Arnie’s – although it isn’t easy if you’re not extremely watchful but a hint here is to be on the lookout for the white sand bunkers – just after it opened in the afternoon at 3 p.m.
A sampling of appys and drinks only whets one’s appetite for a bigger slice of the eatery and it’s unique treasures, along with an outdoor putting green, so reservations were quickly made for a return trip for supper the following day.
The prices are reasonable and the food is good..... their prime rib special on Sunday evening was excellent. But admittedly I’m a 'golfie' not a 'foodie', so take that for what’s it’s worth. Of course, for some of us, food isn’t the main draw of this place anyway.
My wife just laughed as I wandered – star-struck and with eyes as big as the dinner plates – from room to room viewing the displays of magazine covers, record albums where Arnie shared tips, a green jacket from one of his Masters wins, a flag from the 18th hole at the Open and photos of courses.
In all, just a treasure trove of stuff history buffs love to look at and ruminate over.
The rooms here are named for major golf tournaments and outfitted in that manner, including The Open, The Masters, the U.S. Open and other items set out around the premises.
As General Manager and Executive Chef at Arnold Palmer’s restaurant, Chef Brett Maddock has developed a diverse menu of traditional favourites and California fare.
The extensive wine list has also helped the restaurant receive Wine Spectator’s impressive Award of Excellence.
But if you’re like me, you’re not really there for the grub because it’s the décor that sets this place apart from others and really, that’s what it’s all about when you’re a member of Arnie’s Army.
The restaurant is located at 78-164 Avenue 52 in La Quinta and if you’re a golf fan of one of the most charismatic players of all time, make sure you take the time to stop in, even if it’s just for a drink and a look around – you won’t regret it.
If you plan on a meal at Arnold Palmer’s, reservations are recommended (760-771-GOLF (4653), especially during the winter months as this is one extremely popular spot. You can contact them by e-mail at
(This was written with an apology extended to 'Sir Nick', as his restaurant at the Marriott Shadow Ridge is great as well, but hey, I’ve long been a fan of Palmer’s and this was an opportunity to worship at the altar of golf that I just couldn’t pass up!)
About the writer:
Gord Montgomery is the sports editor of two weekly newspapers in the Edmonton area and is a member of the Golf Journalists Association of Canada. He has written for Inside Golf for the past four years with the majority of his coverage in north and central Alberta.