By Karen Billing
Ever since Al Castro took over as general manager of the Rancho Santa Fe Golf Club on May 1, he’s set his focus on bringing more RSF Association members and their families in to enjoy the club. Not just the golfers.
“I saw a need for us to do more family-friendly events,” Castro said. “One of the things I heard over and over was that so many homeowners were not aware that they have access to the club.”
He hopes that the Golf Club will be able to draw more people in with new offerings at its Osuna Grill restaurant and a fun new lineup of events.
Evidence that the family-friendly changes have been well received was seen at two recent events. For Rancho Days, they had a successful hoedown with all kinds of activities for the kids, hayrides and dancing.
Last week for the first time they held a Halloween party for parents and children, complete with a costume contest, pumpkin carving, dancing and food.
“It was a huge hit,” Castro said. “Not only were the little ones dressed up but grown-ups were too. Everyone had a blast.”
During the party, the Osuna Grill still served the regular dinner menu so there was still something for everyone.
Upcoming events hope to get Association members in the festive holiday spirit and hopefully start new family traditions.
On Sunday, Dec. 2, the golf club will host a tree lighting in front of the club. The complimentary event will begin at 4:30 p.m. with hot chocolate, cookies and carolers.
Also for the first time the club is offering a Christmas dinner on Sunday, Dec. 9, featuring a full dinner menu as well as a performance from the All-American Boys Chorus. The All-American Boys Chorus is a professional, touring group comprised of about 100 boys ages 8-15 based in Costa Mesa.
“This will be a wonderful, wonderful Christmas program and reservations are strongly encouraged, we’re about halfway booked,” Castro said.
Lastly for the holidays, the Golf Club will host Santa Claus on Sunday, Dec. 16, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Santa will arrive around 11 a.m. and the event will feature various children’s activities and games, as well as a brunch.
Castro is very excited about the new hours and offerings at the Osuna Grill restaurant, especially as they are in the final stages of hiring a new chef.
“We definitely want a chef that can provide everything from comfort food to a gourmet meal and can have a great personality to meet members and residents while they’re dining,” Castro said.
The Osuna recently expanded its hours and are now open on Tuesday for dinner, as well as for breakfast and dinner on Saturdays. Sunday night is “Prime Rib Night” and Tuesday night is “Burger Night”
“Our burger night is the most popular,” Castro said of the night that serves up 12 different specialty burgers in addition to the regular menu. “It’s a favorite of the entire family, we have a lot of young families bringing in their kids for a casual dinner.”
The Osuna’s menu changes regularly so there is always something “new and exciting” to eat. Additionally, the wine list has grown substantially—it has more than doubled in the last few months and will continue growing.
Saturday dinner began a couple of weeks ago and features a piano player for added ambiance. The live music makes for a nice, relaxing dinner out with family and friends, Castro said.
Tuesday and Wednesday evenings feature a happy hour from 4:30-7 p.m., with specialty pricing on wine, craft beer and cocktails, as well as live music on Wednesdays.
“We get a lot of office people from the village who come and enjoy a cocktail after work and relax,” said Castro, noting that the bar is a great place to unwind with a view of the sun setting over the scenic golf course just outside.
Yappy-hour events were started this year with a social happy hour for people and their pets. The three events the club hosted were very successful with treats for the pups and cocktails for the owners. As the colder season begins, the Yappy-hours are expected to return in January.
The RSF Golf Club also offers several options for Thanksgiving. For those who don’t want to spend the day in the kitchen, Castro said the restaurant can help. The club will host a Thanksgiving family buffet from 1 a.m. to 4 p.m. Additionally, the restaurant is offering take-out Thanksgiving fare for the first time — residents can order up just the turkey or the bird with all the trimmings.
While he’s got a full plate with everything new going on at the club, Castro said he’s very much enjoyed his first six months.
“It’s a wonderful club and community,” Castro said. “I love the people. It’s amazing how friendly and community-minded the entire Ranch is.”
Osuna Grill is open Tuesday through Saturday for lunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., dinner is served Tuesday through Sunday, 5-9 p.m. Breakfast is served Saturday and Sunday from 7:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.
All activities and restaurant information is available at
- Every RSF Association member has access to the website and can call the RSF Golf Club for the access code at (858) 756-1182.