The Plantation Course at Kapalua

    1. The Plantation Course at Kapalua Course Review

    If you throw into this epic mix Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaws creativity, youll understand that playing this baby makes for one of the finest experiences in ones life, obviously, if youre a golf purist. The Kapalua offers arguably the largest/widest fairways in the US, breathtaking, even jaw dropping surroundings which include ocean vistas and jungle, not to mention the rugged rolling terrain on which the golf course is built.The large greens fit perfectly the huge property and I was often wondering why the Plantation Course at Kapalua Golf club is so underrated by national publications. I know what youre thinking, I already told you in the preamble about Kapaluas accolades, but I think they dont do it justice by a long shot. Bottom line, this gem of a golf course is as unique as it gets, lacking one single tree to bother the golfer, featuring incredible elevation changes, sweeping vistas and trade winds that will challenge you round after round in different ways, difficult greens to putt and, last but not least, fantastic ocean views.

    The Prairie Club Dunes

    2. The Prairie Club (Dunes) Course Review

    Playing this baby, youll discover that are so many sets of tees, cleverly placed fairway bunkers and possible pin positions, not to mention the wind that comes into play now and then, that every time you play it, it makes for a different/unique experience, a very different feel round after round and that spells massive fun in my book. In my 2 days here, I played 72 holes from 3 sets of tees with 2 distinct winds, and truth be told, I had the fun of my life. Thing is, even if the wind switches 180 degrees from one day to another, the course remains interesting (both days) and fair, as it plays perfectly in both directions. Also, despite the The Prairie Club (Dunes)s huge greens, most of the time the internal contouring is very subtle, making long two putts doable. The routing is basically an out and back layout, yet not in the purest sense of the word. The sand hills are spectacular and the almost perfect fairways are best described as mesmerizing, as theyre mowed to perfection. Greens are relatively intimidating but if you take your time and study them, youll do alright.

    The Ranch Golf Club

    3. The Ranch Golf Club Course Review

    The golf course sits on a beautiful piece of real estate, a former country retreat (hence the Ranch moniker) of the Crane Paper Company family, which were, back in the day, the barons of the bond paper industry as they invented/developed the cloth embedded stock that later became the US Treasurys choice when it comes to counterfeit resistant money. Damian Pascuzzo did an excellent job at the Ranch Golf Club , creating a course which is both beautiful and challenging, as its set on the rolling hills of the pioneer valley, offering scenic vistas. The hidden greens, the blind T shots and the fairly difficult terrain seem to make the Ranch Golf Club course challenging from any T box, making for a fun, high quality and yet affordable golfing experience for players of all skill levels. If you remember to stay out of the fringes and not hit past the pins, youll be in for an immensely enjoyable endeavor while visiting the Ranch Golf Club, as youll savor a great layout and some epic views while being forced to use all of your clubs in the golf bag.

    The Ridge At Back Brook

    4. The Ridge At Back Brook Course Review

    Joel Moore managed to find 300 acres of pristine land, untouched by time and man, a jaw dropping piece of property where the terrain rises and falls, then becomes thick with lush forests and ribboned with streams and rivers. Talking about paradisiac locations, the Ridge At Back Brook has it all. Everything is focused on golf here, making for a casual and unique atmosphere, very serious about the game and boasting exceptional practice facilities, with a separate bunker/short game areas, lots of practice greens and even a separate teaching tee. The terrain has it all, ranging from elevation changes to huge specimen trees, woods, rock outcroppings and streams. As soon as the Ridge At Back Brook opened, it was an instant hit, with Golf Digest naming it the best new golf course east of the Mississippi as per 2003 and sixth best in the United States. In 2010, the Ridge At Back Brook was ranked eighth best private club in the country, yet most golfers havent caught word about it. Well, that will change after reading this review, dont you think?

    The Sanctuary Golf Club

    5. The Sanctuary Golf Club Course Review

    If youre a big fan of the Lord of the Rings, you may have an idea about how epic playing the Sanctuary Golf Club feels (and looks) like. Situated twenty miles South of the city of Denver, the Sanctuary Golf Club is modern in a sense, i.e. the architect spared no efforts in moving around lots of dirt and trees in order to fit a golf course in a location where skeptics and pessimists said it would be an impossible endeavour. Whats most impressive about Jim Enghs work is that he managed to do so whilst keeping the look unspoiled, as in the golf course blends perfectly with its natural surroundings. The Sanctuary Golf Club is flanked by some forty thousand acres of protected open space, while theres no home clutter to spoil the atmosphere. In other words, this is a true sanctuary for golf aficionados, if it ever was one. Without a doubt, the Sanctuary Golf Club is one of the most spectacular golf courses youll see in your lifetime and playing it is even better. Just try it and thank me later.

    The Signature at Treetops

    6. The Signature at Treetops Course Review

    This baby is a blast to play and it has tons of character, as its located at Treetop North, being the second 18 hole course to be built on the property. Immediately after its opening, the Signature was widely acknowledged as a true masterpiece of golf design, being ranked high in Golf Magazines Best Courses in the Midwest, along with many other honors. The Signature is not quite as challenging as the Masterpiece, which is located at the same resort, but its really a fantastic course, boasting its rolling hills, the elevation changes and the sand traps which are the salt and pepper of any respectable course. The layout is very interesting, to say the least and it will provide you with a challenging experience, its impeccably groomed, very open off the tee yet almost terrifying around the greens. There are many strong and difficult holes, the par 4s and par 5s to give you just a couple of examples, difficult to nit pick but arguably the best looking and enjoyable at the Treetop resort.

    The Vintage Club

    7. The Vintage Club Course Review

    Being a luxury residential community, the Vintage Club harbors no less than two championship grade golf courses, both masterpieces designed by the world famous architect Tom Fazio. Theres the Desert Course and the Mountain Course, the latter being the Vintage Clubs original golf course, which sits in the shadow of the epic Mount Eisenhower. The Desert Course is located a tad farther away from the same Mount Eisenhower, boasting a jaw dropping landscaping, placid streams and lakes and panoramic desert views. Both courses have been consistently rated high among the best in the United States by prestigious golf magazines and they live up to the clubs name. The Desert Course at the Vintage Club makes for a starkingly beautiful contrast compared to the Mountain Course, thanks to its palo verde trees, sparkling water features, the wildflowers and desert cacti, not to mention the wave type bunkers that will provide you with the opportunity to take an exhilarating shot from virtually any tee box. The Mountain Course has a superb layout, which balances perfectly playability and challenge, due to its signature Fazio bunkering, lush fairways, bent grass greens and arguably the best views in California.

    The Virginian Golf Club

    8. The Virginian Golf Club Course Review

    The Virginian Golf Club Course wears the signature of the famous architect Tom Fazio and it features 7025 yards of golf from the championship tees. Located in a pastoral setting with beautiful distant views, the Virginian Golf Club Course is built upon a pristine piece of real estate, providing a thrilling experience for its visitors and according to many, it would be pretty hard to find a better course anywhere in the US. Tom Fazio designed the Virginian following an interesting philosophy, as a special place which honors the land its built upon. The golf course benefits from epic long range views from across the valleys, boasting spectacular mountains and ridges in the background. Tom Fazio made no compromises, using the finest Pennlinks bent for the greens and zoysia for the fairway carpet, with various other grasses around roughs and bunkers for adding texture and color to the course. Playing the Virginian Golf Club Course is very challenging as each of its holes is unique.

    Timuquana Country Club

    9. Timuquana Country Club Course Review

    In May of 2011 the Timuquana suffered a massive renovation job, with the entire course being re-grassed, extensive tree work performed, bunker sand replaced and so on and so forth. When it opened again on October 13, the reviewers were flabbergasted. The Timuquana is all about golf in its purest form, with a terrific layout, always in impeccable shape and truth be told,until recently, this baby has been something similar to a well kept secret. The Timuquana is an old school club, benefiting from a marvelous setting, boasting an understated design and offering a unique golfing experience. The golf course provides a challenging game-play for golfers at every skill level, together with terrific views and a well trained staff that will give you the best tips and tricks for helping you to achieve your best round.

    Tobacco Road Golf Club

    10. Tobacco Road Golf Club Course Review

    The golf course at Tobacco Road can be described best as jaw dropping, due to the incredible views it offers to its visitors starting from the very first tee box, especially if the respective golfer enters into his first game blind, i.e. without a prior mental picture of the place. The initiation so to speak begins high on a hillside, with the golf player being confronted by a couple of huge dunes, divided by a narrow fairway, something along a wasp-waist as per its design. The effect of this visual feast upon the intrepid golfer is truly intimidating, yet a skilled player and a well struck driver should clear these landforms with ease. But then again, the Tobacco Road golf course is like a schoolyard bully, getting in your face and playing the intimidation card the moment you set foot on the playground. The Tobacco Road is located in Carolina Sandhills and the golf course was designed by the (now deceased) architect Mike Strantz, being opened for players in 1998.