Construction on the new state-of-the-art Lou Grubb Clubhouse at Papago Golf Course – which includes the new Lou’s Bar and Grill – is nearing completion, and is on schedule to open this fall. In addition to the clubhouse – designed by the award-winning Phoenix-based Douglas Fredrikson Architects – the construction project includes a private, world-class ASU golf team practice facility, improvements to the public practice facilities and a new, convenient entrance to the course off McDowell Road.
A unique private partnership – the driving force behind Papago’s revitalization – was formed between the City of Phoenix, Arizona State University and the Arizona Golf Community Foundation reflecting the diverse community the new clubhouse is intended to serve.
Led by the Arizona Golf Community Foundation, the partnership worked together to conceptualize, secure funding and carry out the project. Their efforts will crown Papago with a worthy amenity that will act as a social/recreational anchor for neighboring communities and businesses as well as restore the venerable facility to its rightful place as the Valley’s focal point of golf. It also bolsters the long-term financial viability of Papago Golf Course in an environment where, in many cases, municipal golf is at a standstill.
“The new clubhouse and restaurant at Papago is a great way to continue and commemorate my father’s passion for the game of golf and giving back to the community,” said Dan Grubb. “Beyond the honor of naming the restaurant after him, my father would appreciate that it’s designed to be an inclusive place to everyone to enjoy, in addition to golfers.”
The Arizona contemporary layout of Lou’s will serve golfers and casual diners alike in a cool-clean, stone-and-steel atmosphere with open spaces with an inclusive, indoor-outdoor feel. Al fresco dining room and patio seating overlooking green lawns and golf course views provides a setting for small to medium-sized groups, and the adjacent enclosed event hall, Evie’s Pavilion – named after Lou’s wife Evelyn – will cater to larger groups.
“Lou’s will have a wide appeal ranging from golfers to families to professionals meeting for happy hour,” said Daryl Crawford, director of golf for Papago Golf Course. “The atmosphere will be open and inviting with comfortable indoor and outdoor seating, fire pits, kids playing on the grass and spectacular views of the golf course, Papago buttes and downtown Phoenix. My twin brother and I grew up playing City of Phoenix golf courses in the mid-70s,” Crawford continued. “Papago was the most challenging of them all with people like Heather and Missy Farr, Arch and Scott Watkins, Billy Mayfair, and others hanging around. It was considered the best place to play in town and for decades was called out as one of the finest municipal golf courses in the country. In the past several years, we have come a long way to regain that reputation and this phenomenal new Grubb building – combined with the new ASU practice facility – will further elevate that reputation. ”
Clubhouse attractions include a statue of the late Heather Farr – the 1987 NCAA women’s golf team national champion who passed away from cancer – a “history wall” commemorating ASU and Phoenix golf history, and inside, display cases exhibiting other memorability, trophies and honors adorn the lobby.