The Air the Angels Breathe: Martis Camp

An unsurpassable oasis featuring a new state-of-the-art golf course designed by the renowned Tom Fazio is just one of the many amenities the golf and ski community Martis Camp has to offer.

By Felicity Sargent


 This globally inspired community is a truly unique and special place that generations will revel in for years to come.

June 28 can’t come soon enough for golf enthusiasts everywhere. Throughout the country, golfers anticipate the grand opening weekend of Tahoe’s Martis Camp, created by renowned course designer and creative mastermind Tom Fazio, who has developed more than 100 golf courses that are played by the likes of the eminent Tiger Woods, his predecessors, and contemporaries; Martis Camp might be Fazio’s best work yet.

Playing course is akin to being in a natural cathedral, as it is built in harmony with the unaffected landscape of Martis Valley and its immediate surroundings. Martis Camp will entice during all seasons, as it will entail both golf and ski aspects created in unity. Former golf pro Brian Hull, director of sales, says, “We designed the course first, and everything else was built around it.” Fazio planned the course to complement the natural landscape by working in accord with the environment rather than against it. By effectively embracing the land, the course design will maximize the annual length of play, creating every golfer’s dream-a longer season.

Each hole displays a different aspect of the contiguous mountain ranges that define Tahoe’s surreal and natural magnificence. Particularly noteworthy is the ninth hole, which takes full advantage of the dramatic elevations and surrounding vistas.

Following this crux of the course are seven holes crisscrossing through the striking Martis Creek, creating what Hull describes as a “uniquely intimate course setting.” Panoramic views flawlessly frame the finishing holes. The course culminates at the utterly stunning 18th green that sits below a 70-foot rock promontory that the architecturally brilliant 50,000-square-foot Camp Lodge will rest upon. The course and Camp Lodge were designed not only in union with nature, but also in stride with the lifestyle theme of Martis Camp. The locale will be a place for generations of families and friends to convene, pursue athletic endeavors of all skills and varieties, and revel in the awe-inspiring valley. “Here, the accomplished golfer can hone their short game just as easily as kids can learn the basics,” says Hull, emphasizing the distinctive quality of the course.

The perfectly situated Camp Lodge will offer a selection of both casual and fine dining, and a state-of-the-art fitness club, tennis courts, and spa, which offers specialty therapeutic treatments that “elevate relaxation to an art form.” In addition to the Fazio course, there is an 18-hole putting course ideal for novice golfers. For non-golf enthusiasts, the community has more than 20 miles of trails for running, mountain biking, or hiking. Club members can enjoy varying levels of treks all the way to the High Sierra Nevada, or more leisurely hikes to the fully stocked fishing lake. During the winter months, members can take advantage of Martis Camp’s direct ski connection with one of the country’s developing top tier ski resorts, Northstar-at-Tahoe. This partnership will ensure community members private ski access to all of the trails. A shuttle will come to collect mountain-goers at their doorsteps and take them to the mountainside warming hut and sun deck, which offers a light fare menu with a cozy après ski atmosphere. Adjacent to the hut is a quad lift that will take anxiously awaiting skiers and riders to the top of the slopes in a mere six minutes.

The concept of balanced family involvement, which is displayed through the variety of amenities offered, was crucial to the development of the camp. The membership itself is uniquely catered towards family in that, unlike most communities, members of Martis Camp can extend their memberships to their children. This allows the purpose of the camp to be actualized: losing unnecessary formalities to spend time with family and friends, allowing total relaxation, enjoying each other’s company, and fusing with the environment through the pursuit of athletics and the arts.

The Family Barn exemplifies this philosophy as well; the unique club amenity was designed with pure family enjoyment in mind. The gathering spot includes a summer swimming venue, nostalgic soda fountain, bowling lanes, movie theater, indoor basketball court for adults and children, bocce ball courts, grand lawn perfectly manicured for croquet, children’s playground, volleyball court, and a breathtaking summer grill and veranda.

The Lost Library complements the athletic offerings and activities. Here adults and children alike can relax and explore the literary world. A vast collection of authors such as Shakespeare, Steinbeck, Austen, and Angelou will encourage philosophic discussion, and further development of learning can be achieved at one of the many classes offered at the Folk School. The school is based upon teaching with purity and simplicity as the core philosophies. Classes are offered in history, tradition, social sciences, painting, or photography, and there is certainly no lack of inspiration to conjure artistic responses from the surrounding natural aura.

Parcels on this unmatchable property are one to four acres, ensuring privacy without isolation. As the club’s architectural handbook states, “The homes created in Martis Camp will benefit from the collective design wisdom gained from hundreds of years of inspired mountain architecture around the world.” This globally inspired community is a truly unique and special place that generations will revel in for years to come. Mark Twain once said of Tahoe, “It is the fairest picture the whole earth affords, the air the angels breathe,” and there is no superior place to fully experience this than Martis Camp.