With the recent cold snap, most golfers have packed away their clubs for the season. However, thanks to a West Bloomfield business, local players can still get in a round or two even when the weather doesn’t permit, while hunters and police officers can practice and conduct shooting drills.
Al Zara, owner of Play Golf 365, has found ways to diversify the business, offering alternative options including hunting simulators and tactical shooting simulators. For example, several local police departments can practice shooting drills at the virtual range.
But golf remains the main focus. “When you play a video game, you’re holding a remote control and you’re still doing the same rhythm of swinging,” Zara says. “However, at Play Golf 365, guests can bring in their regular clubs and practice their swing.”
Founded in 2012, Play Golf 365 offers golfers an alternative indoor playing experience, with simulation technology that allows guests to play more than 85 virtual courses in one of four 25-by-14-foot rooms for rent. Options depict properties both nearby (The Tribute at Otsego Club in Gaylord) and far away (St. Andrew’s in Scotland).
The simulator is highly specialized and takes careful measurements of patterns in a players swing, Zara says. “Whether you’re an amateur, a beginner, or an expert, you get a really good sense of how your swing is from your club path, launch angle, what you’re doing right, what you’re doing wrong. It’s not like you’re just hitting a few balls on the range. This is actually playing a full round of 18 holes.”
Business is very seasonal, with more customers reserving rooms during the colder months when outdoor play isn’t an option, Zara says. “It’s not just for avid golfers,” he says. “For beginners, this is a great way to learn.”
Visitors also have full access to the Library Sports Bar, which offers food, soft drinks, beer, wine, and spirits. Bar staff is on-call during the day through a special push button ordering system installed in every rented room.
For more information about Play Golf 365, located at 6347 Haggerty Rd., call 248-669-4653 or visit playgolfallyear.com.