...out of 4 GT logo rating. It provided the most enjoyable sim round we've played in a long time; however, we can't rate it higher than Fore Seasons.
Ambience: It’s what you make it of it. Four Seasons is pretty much no-frills, a sim-golfer purist paradise (if there is such a thing), but it does provide cup holders screwed into the wall at shoulder level near the swing zone, which is a subtle pace of play enhancement. As Rabbit Ears noted, there's a package store strategically located across the street and you can BYOB, which is great, unless your sim golf enjoyment hinges on being served, in which case, you'll be disappointed; this plays better to the crowd that stuffs beers in golf bags. There are speakers to provide “fabricated course noise,” if you’re up for that sort of thing. Rabbit Ears cleared the beverage deck for the "Lady Gaga Trophy (reigning sim golf champion)" pictured at left.
In Summary: Once you’ve come to grips with the fact that the time suck known as sim-putting will be involved, Four Seasons Golf scores higher on the GT Value Proposition Scale and pace of play scale than any other Sim Resort we’ve reviewed (aside from Fore Seasons, where no putting is required, which isn't an even comparison). Four Seasons keeps some obvious/common sense rules at your attention, like not hitting backward into the wall while the surveillance cam is watching.
We know that Four Seasons Golf is worth at least a...
Four Seasons Golf (sim golf facility); Groton, Connecticut (reviewed January, 2016)
A Winter Oasis. How Four Seasons Golf (not to be confused with Fore Seasons Golf Club in Bethany) escaped us for so long is puzzling, until one looks at a map. The southeast corner of Connecticut isn’t exactly on our doorstep. This sim resort was recommended to us by a colleague of the Tracker known as Rabbit Ears and we appreciate his suggestion.
Idiot-Proofing Minutiae: We can't say enough good things about the brilliant use of corrugated cardboard here. On what's probably an unnecessarily complicated control board, Four Seasons gives you what you need to know and saves you from the rest, before you can overthink it or otherwise screw it up. Favorite feature here: underneath the cardboard, the Mulligan button, which you can use if someone hits out of turn, before there's a melee in your group.
After logging more than a few miles to get there, the first thing we liked about Four Seasons was its location. Unless you have your GPS dialed in, it’s almost as easy to drive past this entrance as the one at Airways GC, our favorite drive-by benchmark. Set back from the road in a modest building, there are two signs in the front windows: “golfing on simulators” and the one in neon that apparently grabbed at least one of us like an ultraviolet mosquito zapper, “OPEN.” Perfect.
Non-minutiae: The owner was really helpful, doing everything humanly possible to set us up properly for an enjoyable round of sim. Some sim resorts are more concerned with helping us enjoy our food & beverage tab. While we appreciate that, this was refreshing, almost as refreshing as the 5-degree wind chill nonsense outside the Four Seasons sim palace.
Minutiae: This will probably only be noteworthy to seasoned sim-trackers, but Four Seasons has, by far, been the best simulator we’ve played. It’s possibly not the highest tech, but that's not what matters. The sensors picked up everything. We didn’t need to re-tee any shots; which as any sim-tracker knows, is a pain in the ass, a waste of time, and something that will eventually fray everyone’s nerves in a confined area, which is never good. First time we’ve enjoyed the more positive experience; all too familiar with the other. More granular minutiae: the sim yardage seemed to be pretty accurate, based on our body of work flailing on natural turf.
Feng Shui Minutiae: The sim booths are just about the perfect size; perfect spatial balance, grasshoppah. You can swing from your heels, take three, not two, steps, retrieve your ball, then… next up…not nearly as painstakingly slow as some of our other sim experiences.