Our Heritage

The Great Gorge golf course was initially built and opened in 1970 by Hugh Hefner and operated as the golf course for The Great Gorge Playboy Club, which included a resort hotel. The exclusive Vernon location was one of prestige and honor, attracting some of the biggest names in entertainment, like Sinatra, Avalon, and Bennet, just to name a few. People – including many who lived within driving distance – signed up as members and received the traditional “key” to the Playboy Club. Giving a husband or boyfriend a membership was a popular gift choice. The Playboy Club, including the golf course, were enjoyed by guests from around the globe, where they played, ate, relaxed, and entertained in the 20 million dollar resort.

The Playboy brand eventually closed the resort and changed hands a few times before eventually being closed to the public. The golf course, however, has lived on!

The New Beginning

In 2016, the Great Gorge Golf Course was purchased by the Koffman family, and work began almost immediately to transform the dormant course. The new management team focused on restoring the 27-hole course by improving the conditions, turf management, and clubhouse amenities. Work continues regularly to maintain the grounds and retain the challenging course for our golf enthusiasts.

Paying homage to the history of the Great Gorge Playboy Club, the management team is dedicated to creating an experience for our golfers. We have focused on maintaining a pristine golf course which means bunker improvements, plans for updated golf cart paths, and tee renovations.

TreEscape Aerial Adventure Park, a part of the 500 acres of The Great Gorge, is a unique blend of wooden platforms built high in the trees connected by exhilarating combinations of rope walks, obstacles, climbing elements, and zip lines, all located in our beautiful, forested setting of The Great Gorge in Vernon, NJ.

The park offers two unique adventures: Our Climbing Sessions will have you high up in the trees and wanting to come back over and over again to conquer our 10 thrilling ropes courses that start for ages 4+ – or zip high above the trees on the Black Creek Flyer, a new attraction that was built in 2022 is an exhilarating self-guided zip-line course for thrill-seekers of ages 7+

Newly opened in 2022, Hef’s Hut is the hidden gem in Vernon Valley, tucked behind the old Playboy Club, adjacent to the Golf Club’s pro shop. The bar and grill is a perfect spot to sit and relax after a round of golf or a day on the TreEscape Aerial Adventure Course, an exciting attraction with live music and special events, and an ideal place to throw a laid-back party or event.

The Great Gorge is your destination for golf, adventure, and a fun atmosphere that is fun for all ages!