The number of virtual golf entertainment venues in Downtown will double—from one to two—this week when Topgolf Swing Suite opens at the Courtyard by Marriott Downtown Long Beach.

The hotel on the corner of Linden Avenue and First Street is set to open two bays with the virtual entertainment system on Thursday, March 2, according to General Manager Silvano Merlo, who said Topgolf was actively searching for more locations in Southern California.

“I jumped at the opportunity,” Merlo said, adding that the first location opened at a Marriott hotel in Irvine. “I talked to my counterpart out there, and she said it was extremely successful.”

While Topgolf’s original products are full-sized driving ranges, Swing Suite is a virtual offering that includes simulated golf as well as other games, including baseball pitching, dodgeball, carnival games, hockey shots, football quarterback challenge and soccer.

The Downtown location will be open Wednesday through Sunday from 2-10 p.m. for hotel guests and the general public, Merlo said. It will cost $60 per hour to rent a bay that can accommodate four to eight people.

Topgolf has 97 locations across the country—many in hotels, including numerous Marriotts—as well as four locations in Canada and one each in Puerto Rico, Hong Kong and Australia. The Long Beach location is one of 18 new U.S. locations “coming soon,” according to the company’s website.

This will be the city’s second virtual golf offering. In summer 2021, Birdies n Brews opened its doors at 90 E. Fourth St. in Downtown. The space also has two simulators with a food and beverage menu.

The Courtyard location will be located just off the lobby of the hotel, in what used to be event space, Merlo said. The entertainment is part of a multi-million dollar hotel renovation, which includes the remaining 10,000 square feet of event and restaurant space as well as the lobby and guest rooms later this year.

Topgolf will require the hiring of two or three staff members, Merlo said, including one person at the front desk and one or more to handle the added food and beverage offerings.

“In the hotel space,” Merlo said, “you always try to add things that can enhance the stay of a hotel customer and give something to the local community outside of the regular restaurant or bar.”

Brandon Richardson is a reporter and photojournalist for the Long Beach Post and Long Beach Business Journal.