Emerald Dunes - Fazio Master Renovation PDF Print E-mail


Back in 1990, Tom Fazio finished sculpting what was thought of at the time as one of his finest

designs - Emerald Dunes Club in West Palm Beach. Along with Black Diamond's Quarry, Emerald

Dunes was certainly considered his best work in the sunshine state (3 years later he designed 36

holes at World Woods north of Tampa).


Over a relatively short period of time, EDC lost some of its luster, and was no longer considered

among the state's elite. Whether it was the boom of new courses in the 90's, or the fact that it

became lost in ownership changes and shifted from a high end daily fee (at its inception) to an

exclusive club (that was owned at one point by a group headed by the late Frank Chirkinian of CBS

Sports) no one seems to know for sure.




The clubhouse at Emerald Dunes



Fazio was very excited to get a chance to polish his 22 year old creation, "Emerald Dunes has always

been one of my favorite courses, and I was pleased to be invited back to make some strategic

enhancements to one of the most highly regarded clubs in Florida. Emerald Dunes is truly a gem, and

with the recent improvements, it's an even more dazzling jewel".


Thanks to new ownership and a 15 million dollar renovation by Fazio, the course and club are more

beautiful than one can imagine.The first eye popping improvement is the Landscaping by Hadden

Landscape Company, thousands of native Muhly, Fountain and Cord grasses line the dunes and

slopes, as well as 2,000 new palms and ornamental hedges throughout the property. A sea of Purple

Bougainvillea vines climb the walls of the newly updated clubhouse.


Practice facilities are often overlooked at clubs of this stature, at EDC it not only wasn't overlooked,

it is one of the best anywhere. The eight acre driving range and learning studio on the back end are

above standard issue. The four acre shortgame area is as good as it gets, and includes multiple

bunkers and target greens for different types of shots in various wind conditions . . . also included

is a 19th hole (85-135 yards) for settling wagers or just for working on your wedge play. The turf

at the shortgame area is kept at the same speeds and firmness as the course.If I was fortunate

enough to be a member (I'm not), I would spend copious amounts of time at this part of the property.


Fazio had this to say about the shortgame area:

"With the new Short Game Area, we added more green space. We’ve mimicked anything

you will encounter on the course here. Practice is an integral part of the game and this is

a spectacular amenity that allows golfers to tune-up their short game. This area gave me

a chance to make a significant addition to the golf experience at Emerald Dunes.”



Shortgame area




As for the work on the course itself, Master Fazio gave Dunes his personal touch.He glows when

he talks about the place: "To take something that originally was so well received, and make it

substantially superior is a special achievement."


Many Championship tees were added (EDC tips out at just over 7100 yards now) and others reshaped,

as well as fairways widened and some new greens were created. A new irrigation system will ensure

proper and consistent conditions for everyday play 365 days each year in Palm Beach. In an area

that boasts the likes of Seminole, Medalist, Jupiter Hills, and Trump International . . .  can Fazio's latest

edition of Emerald Dunes stack up?



The tee on the 402 yard third





The signature par 3 - fourth (182 yards)





The longest hole at Emerald Dunes is the 583 yard par 5 - fifth





Fairway bunker on the par 4 sixth





The right to left dog leg seventh, stay left center off the tee . . . bailing away from the water leaves an

extreme right to left sidehill lie.





The 212 yard eighth - soft shell cart paths cut through fountain grass and really add a more natural

look and feel (an aesthetic upgrade from the old concrete paths ).





The uphill tenth is the best par 4 on Fazio's jewel





Another view of the tenth - Notice the contour of the fairway and the native grasses bordering the

mounds on both sides)




The short 495 yard par 5 - 11th





The approach to the well guarded twelfth, at only 346 yards from the tips . . . a wedge in leaves a good birdie chance.





The right to left 401 yard thirteenth





The Fourteenth - 211 yards (Fazio gives plenty of bailout room)






The gorgeous tee shot on the 412 yard fifteenth plays into the prevailing wind.Definitely the sleeper

of the back nine, with OB left and hazard right . . . this tee shot is not for the faint of heart.





The 179 yard sixteenth





The approach into the 574 yard - par 5 seventeenth





The view from atop the dune at the eighteenth



There are many ultra exclusive golf clubs in Palm Beach . . . in Florida . . .  and in the U.S, but there

are few as special as the new Emerald Dunes Club.The experience at EDC is unique and beautiful, no

detail was overlooked in the present edition, it is quite simply the most impressive renovation that we

have seen to date - kudos to Master Fazio.

visit: http://www.emeraldunes.com/


Thanks to Director of Golf Lee Rinker and Membership Director Lesley Rey.