Omni PGA Frisco opening ushers in new era of Texas golf

In its first month, the new resort will host the KitchenAid Senior PGA championship.


Bryce Yates, Roger Meier, Nic Zickefoose and Kyle Bunney
Bryce Yates, Roger Meier, Nic Zickefoose and Kyle Bunney make up part of the management team at Omni PGA Frisco.Photos courtesy of PGA of America

Four years ago, Roger Meier took a tour that required some agility. He joined golf course architects Gil Hanse and Beau Welling as they walked what would become the site of golf on a grand scale at PGA Frisco in Frisco, Texas. The PGA of America had announced a year earlier, in 2018, that it was relocating its headquarters from Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., to Frisco, which is approximately 30 miles north of Dallas.

Golf courses played a key part in the PGA of America’s new home. Meier’s too. Meier was influenced and sold on the magnitude of what PGA Frisco had to offer by Jimmy Terry, senior director of PGA Golf Properties. Meier wanted in, departed from Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Ky., and accepted one of those chance-of-a-lifetime opportunities in 2019 when he was hired as senior director of golf course maintenance operations. That year, he joined Hanse and Welling to survey what in time would be those golf playing fields. It was memorable for multiple reasons, including the ground.

“I remember walking with them, jumping over cattle fences, mud up to our knees,” says Meier, a 27-year GCSAA member. “Besides that, I saw their vision to create this awesome golf experience.”

Soon enough — and for decades beyond that — the world will get an eyeful of what is happening at PGA Frisco, which is a public-private partnership between the PGA of America, Omni Hotels & Resorts, the city of Frisco and the Frisco Independent School District. In addition to the golf options, the property also includes more than 106,600 square feet of office space, the Omni PGA Frisco Resort and a convention center.

Frisco East Course hole 5
Frisco East Course hole 5.

Early in May, PGA Frisco will host its grand opening to local residents, Club 1916 members and resort guests. Later in the month — May 25-28, to be exact — PGA Frisco will host its first major championship when the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship is played. The championship is being held at Fields Ranch East, designed by Hanse, which is one of multiple golf options on the grounds that ultimately will be open to the public. The other championship course is Fields Ranch West, designed by Welling. There is also The Swing, a lighted 10-hole par-3 short course, and The Dance Floor, a 2-acre putting course/entertainment area. 

The KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship is the tip of the iceberg for championships at the site. In the coming years, PGA Frisco is scheduled to host 26 high-profile championships on its two 18-hole courses, including the 2027 and 2034 PGA Championships, the 2025 and 2031 KPMG Women’s PGA Championships, and the National Car Rental PGA Junior League Championship this year and next.

“Everything we have here is a really cool, unique experience,” Meier says. “It goes hand in hand with the PGA of America’s mission to grow the game of golf. It’s player friendly to the best players in the world and it caters to every ability of golfer.”

Frisco West Course hole 18
Frisco West Course hole 18.

Meier worked extensively with Hanse and Welling. In addition to the two Fields Ranch courses, those two collaborated on The Swing. The 18-hole courses share the same type of grasses — putting surfaces are TifEagle bermudagrass, with NorthBridge bermudagrass on the fairways, tees and roughs. The NorthBridge grass was severely tested and showcased its cold tolerance during record-breaking low temperatures in 2021. “The grass breaks dormancy early, so we have early green-up, and it holds its color until late in the fall,” Meier says. “We also like the (grass) for its flexibility for heights of cut.

“The course is tremendously broad. We have 70 acres of fairways on each course, so the NorthBridge gives us flexibility to modify grass lines for championships.”

The Dance Floor putting course features Lazer zoysiagrass and is the centerpiece between the PGA offices and the Omni PGA Frisco Resort.

Meier’s team includes managing superintendent of golf courses and grounds Bryce Yates (seven-year GCSAA member), Fields Ranch East superintendent Nic Zickefoose (five-year member) and Fields Ranch West GCSAA Class A superintendent Kyle Bunney (14-year association member).

A turfgrass science and management graduate from SUNY Cobleskill, Meier has plenty of experience with big-time golf. Besides overseeing the 2014 PGA Championship and the 2011 Senior PGA Championship at Valhalla, he was part of renovations and redesigns there. Meier always wanted to be in the mix for championship events. He certainly will get all he wants of it at PGA Frisco.

“Amazing facility. Special place. This vision of what the PGA of America was going to do here, building what we talk of as the modern home for golf in America … I thought it would be an amazing experience to get this off the ground and to fruition,” Meier says. “This has been a long time coming, and we have had some challenges, but we’re ready to get this thing going.”

Howard Richman is GCM's associate editor