Young and Fresh: Tobiano Rocks Okanagan

William Law - Feb 23, 2009
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If there is any question that time does fly when you’re having fun, take a run up to Tobiano near Kamloops, Canada, and ask Miles Mortensen what he thinks.

“It really is an honor to be a part of it,” Mortensen grinned when asked about his role as the Director of Golf at Tobiano. “I don’t feel like it’s work as much as it is an opportunity to be part of a neat experience for myself and for my family.”

What began for Mortensen in early 2007 as a position with no office, no telephones, no clubhouse and indeed, no golf course, has evolved quickly into an important role at an award-winning facility. In fact, Tobiano was named the Best New Golf Course in Canada last summer by SCOREGolf Magazine.

“Things have been very good so far and we’re very happy with the market response,” Mortensen smiled. “The players who have come from Alberta and British Columbia have indicated they are quite thrilled with our product. There was plenty of anticipation initially and we are hearing from people now that they are very excited about coming back. It’s a good indication to us that we are providing the quality of experience the golfer is looking for.”

The golf course opened softly in mid-2007, providing almost a rehearsal opportunity for the operation before the entire Tobiano development rose to prominence in 2008. The golf course, designed by Canadian architect Thomas McBroom along Kamloops Lake, is an outstanding piece of work. It’s a healthy walk, perhaps spoiled only occasionally if a stiff breeze happens to take control of your golf ball.

“There is really a balance to the design of the golf course,” Mortensen said. “Playability is important, but there is also quite a unique look to the layout. People feel the value is there and they tell us they are confident we are providing a good experience for their recreational dollar.”

Tobiano is a master-planned resort community located on part of Six Mile Ranch, just 20 minutes from Kamloops. Residents enjoy a 100-slip marina, an equestrian centre and 17,000 acres of backcountry with fly-fishing lakes, hiking and riding trails. Tobiano’s resort townhomes and single-family residences have been strategically positioned to ensure exceptional vistas are preserved for golfers, horse enthusiasts and residents alike. In addition to the resort’s unimpeded views, Tobiano will also consist of luxury hotels and a pedestrian-friendly retail village featuring cafés, restaurants and shops.

“I’ve really been inspired by our leadership,” Mortensen said. “Michael Grenier has put much more into the development at Tobiano than I have to get the project to where it is today. The unique thing about the project is that Michael treats the employees like family and he wants us to play a key role here. It really does inspire the whole team and I’ve enjoyed watching how people are responding to the opportunity. It’s so rewarding to be a part of it.”

By Glen Erickson

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