Bruno's Blog


Jupiter Hills Club Set to Host USGA Four-Ball Championship PDF Print E-mail

 

 

By Jason Bruno                                                                                                                                                  posted 4/18 4:38pm est.

Tequesta, Florida - On Monday, the United States Golf Association hosted

the media at the site of the 2018 U.S Amateur Four-Ball Championship -

Jupiter Hills Club. The two man team competition takes place May 19th-

23rd on George Fazio's Hills Course and Tom Fazio's Village Course, Jupiter

Hills is practically unknown to the golfing public when compared to the three

preceding host venues (Olympic, Winged Foot and Pinehurst) that have all

hosted multiple U.S Opens over the last century.

 

 

 

 

In the late 60's, Jupiter Hills was founded and created by George Fazio

along with William Clay Ford, Bob Hope and William Elliott. The Hills Course

opened in 1970 (renovated by Tom Fazio in 2006), Tom Fazio's Village layout

opened for play in 1982 (Fazio completed a renovation in 1999). In 1987,

Billy Mayfair captured the U.S Amateur at Jupiter Hills.

 

 

 

 

 

 


On Feb.11th, 2013 the creation of U.S Amateur Four-Ball and the U.S

Women's Four-Ball was announced, thus eliminating the U.S Amateur

Public Links Championship and Women's Am Pub-Links in favor of a new

team format competition. In doing so, the dream of many public golfers

of winning that national championship and playing in the Masters had

gone away. I've stated on the record that I'd much preferred they left

the Amateur Public links events as they were (and found another way to

add this team event), but by bringing this team format to many of the

best venues in the country, the USGA has done a nice job of getting the

new event off to a roaring start. In fact, the USGA accepted 2.234

entries into the inaugural U.S Am Four-Ball championship in 2015. Not

bad for a start-up (2,279 entries this year).



 

 

 

 

 

Jupiter Hills signature hole, the par 3 ninth

 

 

 

The Hills Course will play 3,641 yards front/3,612 yards back = 7,253

(par 70), while the Village (which will serve as a stroke-play co-host for

the first two rounds) will play 3,264 yards front/3,364 yards back =

6,630 yards (par 70). The Hills routing normally plays 6,998 yards from

the tips, but an additional 255 yards will be available to the competition

staff to make a few holes even more stout than usual (the ninth pictured

above has a range 108 yards (red tees) to 192 yards (gold tees), but

a secluded tee on the north east side of the property creates a 211 yard

"white knuckler" that will likely turn up the tension in any match. Although

it's team competition and players will have a partner to lean on, the Hills

course will challenge all comers with a brawny 76.6 rating/150 slope for

the Championship.

 

 

 

 


 

It had been 12 long years since our last visit to Jupiter Hills, and if anything

was clear after a glorious day on the Hills course (with club President Jeff

Harris, SFPGA Professional Geoff Lofstead and longtime veteran golf scribe

Jeff Babineau), it was the worthiness of George Fazio's grand design that

sits along the same dunes/sand ridge that Donald Ross' famed Seminole

Golf Club shares just a few miles south in Juno Beach.

 

 

 

 

The view of the driving range and practice green from the clubhouse terrace.

The Par 5-first hole is on the right.

 

 

 

 


The view of 491 yard first, converted into a par 4 for the championship

(it plays as a 515 yard par 5 for the members  - white tees)

 


 

The Four-Ball field of 128 teams (256 players) will play one round of stroke

play on May 19th & May 20th, the low 32 teams will advance to match play.

Five rounds of match play will determine a champion on Wed. May 23rd.

Admission is free to the public and tickets are not required. The USGA and

the Jupiter Hills Club encourage fans to attend.

 

Future Four-Ball sites include: 2019 Bandon Dunes, 2020 Philadelphia Cricket

Club, and Chambers Bay in 2021.

 


For more info on the U.S Amateur Four-Ball Championship:

http://www.usga.org/championships/2017/u-s--amateur-four-ball.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
The Grand Opening Experience of Streamsong Black PDF Print E-mail

 

By Jason Bruno


The magnificent par 3 - fifth hole at Streamsong Black

 

 

 

It was a gorgeous sunny Monday afternoon at Streamsong Resort

for the Grand Opening of their latest (sure to be Top 100) layout - Gil

Hanse's Black Course. September 25th, 2017 was a day that many in

the golf design, resort and media industry had circled on their calendars.

It's always an honor to get the invite to events such as this and when

Streamsong and Kemper Sports team up to host an celebration of this

magnitude, you know it'll be a day to remember.

 

 

In the coming days we'll give a detailed hole by hole description of

Hanse's new creation in it's entirety, but in this post it's all about

giving you the experience of being on hand for the Grand Opening.


 

 

This was the official itinerary for the day. I was fortunate to be in group

1b with Streamsong Director of Golf Scott Wilson, Golfweek's resident

course architecture expert Bradley Klein and PGA Magazine's Ryan

Adams. Group 1a was Course Designer Gil Hanse, Mosaic CFO and

Streamsong visionary Rich Mack, Kemper Sports President Josh Lesnik,

and Golf Channel's Matt Ginella.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For me personally, it was 8 months of anticipation since I bumped into

Mosaic's Vice President of Land Development and Management - Tom

Sunnarborg at January's PGA Show in Orlando. When we discussed the

opening of Streamsong Black back then, Tom just flashed that big smile

of his and said, "The grand opening will be in late September, and You

won't be disappointed". Five and a half years ago it was Sunnarborg

that gave me a site tour of the Red & Blue courses during the grow in

period, so he was pretty confident that I'd appreciate what Gil Hanse

& Jim Wagner had created with the resort's third course. The resort

can now stake claim to being the only destination on earth with Doak,

Coore/Crenshaw, and Gil Hanse designs in one location.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gil Hanse spoke genuinely about how this project meant so much to him

and his design partner Jim Wagner. He described the joy of getting the

opportunity to work with an untouched parcel of land of the scale and sand

component that's an architects dream. Hanse became emotional as he

expressed how appreciative he was to Rich Mack and Mosaic (the parent

company of Streamsong) for including Jim's name on the clubhouse plaque

(pictured above).

He went on to thank everyone involved with the project and gave special

thanks to Streamsong Director of Agronomy Rusty Mercer and his staff.

Gotta love when the guys who do much of the heavy lifting day to day

get a round of applause.


 

 

 

 

 

 

Tom Sunnarborg, Gil Hanse and Rich Mack at the Grand Opening ceremony.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rich Mack, Mosaic's visionary behind what we now know as Streamsong Resort,

and Black Course designer Gil Hanse cut the ribbon at the Grand Opening

ceremony.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The new clubhouse and Bone Valley Tavern restaurant at Streamsong Black

is your first impression driving up to the entry of the resort's latest attraction.

Award winning architect Alberto Alfonso, who created the unique design for

Streamsong's original resort lodge and clubhouse, crafted another gem just

a mile down the road from the mothership. Sleek, elegant and simple in both

it's style and function, the clubhouse at the Black is unlike any I've seen at a

golf facility. As you play the course, it's streamlined and low profile look so

brilliant on the horizon. Afterwards enjoy watching the sunset or gazing at

the stars with a drink beside the fire pit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The par 4 second hole.

 

 

As group of nearly 100 or so golf media and other dignitaries within the

industry, we teed of at 1:30 pm after a warm welcome of food, drinks

and the opening ceremony. As I stated earlier, being in group 1(b) was a

fortunate draw that also may have allowed me to have the best caddie in

the house - Brian Wilson. B.W was spot on with reads and club selections

all round long, but more importantly was pleasant and invested in my

experience. We had absolute chamber of commerce conditions for an

event in central Florida in late September - mid 80's and sunny with a

enough of a breeze to make the walk enjoyable and club selection a bit

of a challenge at times.

 

Is there anything better than walking a brand new (sure to be top 100)

golf course with really great people and having your sticks looped by an

upbeat and skilled caddie? The course was everything Hanse said it was,

big, bold and fun (I'll get into more specifics and details in the upcoming

course review). The group did all they could to help me triumph in my

beverage wager with Matt Ginella who said "Game On" walking off the

eleventh tee at +1 when he heard I was even par. But nobody could keep

me from faltering coming in, including three putts at the 13th and 17th.

Then after the best knock of the day on the 530 yard finale, all we had left

was 208 (and the only thought was about trying to make 3 and getting back

to level par) but the 4 iron approach got a little too much of the big ball before

the dimpled one, and plunged into the ravine that fronts the most dramatic

finisher at the resort. The only double of the day was the result. As I caught

up with Matty G in the Bone Valley Tavern afterwards, he confessed that he

also misplayed the 18th and finished at the same score (+4) for the round. A

rematch will have to be in order for sure (perhaps a home and home with

Winter Park 9/ Palm Beach Par3) . . .

 

 

 

 

Some images from the new Black Course:

 

Greenside at the sixth

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fairway view on the Thirteenth

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Short par 3 fifteenth

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just outside the clubhouse is Gil Hanse's "Gauntlet" putting course.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ryan Adams (from PGA Magazine) and I came right off the 18th green

after our round and took on "The Gauntlet". This is an ideal spot like the

"Punchbowl" at Bandon Dunes for drinks and casual competition before

or after dinner with friends.

 

 

 

 

 

Some of the really cool grand opening keepsakes from the day.

 

 

 

 

 


As far as new course openings go, this

was about as grand an event as you

could imagine. Head Golf Professional

Scott Wilson was the perfect host, as

were all of the fine folks at Streamsong

and Kemper Sports.

 

As far as the Black Course is concerned,

if you like hitting lots of fairways and

enjoy having a variety of different types

of approach shots into large greens, then

the Black will thrill you. The challenge

really begins once you reach the greens

on Gil's big and bold new design. These

are truly some of the most fascinating

putting surfaces you'll ever encounter -

an instant must play. It checked all the

boxes of fun and challenging golf for me.

 

Oh and wait until you see the uber

Punchbowl ninth green! It's Raynor on

steroids . . .

 

There's no doubt in my mind that the

Black is destined to be an instant Top

100 ranked course.

 

I loved this gun metal gray Streamsong

logo (pictured right) that's affixed to the

clubhouse wall that faces The Gauntlet

putting course. They didn't miss a detail

here.

 

 

 

As we enjoyed the delicious gourmet tavern selections after the round in the

clubhouse at Bone Valley, Scott Wilson probably could sense that I was a tad

disappointed to finish with that train wreck at the last, but being the class act

he is, reminded me that we would've had a hell of a best ball score.

 

After thank-yous and goodbyes were said, I headed for the valet station just

as the sun was vanishing on the horizon. As I looked back at everyone inside

the clubhouse having a great time celebrating this fabulous new place, I thought

about the tens of thousands that will do the same in years and decades to come.

I couldn't help but think about Rich Mack's vision to turn this old phosphate mining

property in the middle of nowhere into the destination it has become today.

Just remarkable.

 

With a long winding road ahead, there was nothing left but to hit the road, and

channel an American music icon that we had just lost . . .

 

I rolled on as the sky drew dark

I put the pedal down to make some time

There's something good waitin' down this road

I'm pickin' up whatever's mine

Yeah, runnin down a dream . . .


R.I.P Tom Petty

 

 

 

For more information on Streamsong Black: http://www.streamsongresort.com/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 
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