Course Reviews/Travel


Streamsong Blue PDF Print E-mail

 

Article and Photos by Jason Bruno

The par 3 - seventh at Streamsong Blue is a stunner.



The Blue course at Streamsong Resort is the design of Tom Doak & his Renaissance team, and

although it intertwines with Coore & Crenshaw's Red course, the two layouts offer different

challenges. Where the Red requires precise tee shots, the Blue is wider off the tee and emphasizes

correct angles into Doak's large well undulated linkstyle greens. The Blue's degree of difficulty

increases as you get closer to the green.


The first time I played the Blue was in January during Media Day (via cart) with Eric Iverson from

Doak's design team and Rick Young, one of the most respected golf business journalists in the game

(ScoreGolf in Canada). This time around, I hiked solo to get all 36 in and make may way back to West

Palm by nightfall. It's great to have something so unique that's close enough for this assignment to

be considered a semi-home game.

The par 4 first hole plays much shorter than the listed 338 yds from the tips. The tee shot is from

the highest elevation on the property to a wide fairway that plays firm and fast. Doaks starts you

off with a thrilling view and probable birdie chance, unlike the behemoth opener on the Red . . .

for this reason, I'd suggest leading off with the Blue on any 36 hole endeavor at Streamsong.




The Par 5 second also plays downhill, but be careful when avoiding the right fairway bunker, a solid

drive that is pulled can go thru the shortgrass into trouble. Only the longest hitters will reach the

green in two here.





The surface at the par 5 second is among the more tame at Streamsong Blue





The right to left par 4 third hole plays 418 yards from the tips, but is only 370 from the next tee up,

the play here is to draw your tee shot off of the right fairway bunker, leaving a short second to a

slightly uphill green.





4th fairway


The fourth hole, (specifically the approach) is the first of several challenges on the blue where the

player incurs the Blue's teeth. At 442 yards, the prevailing wind comes from the left on this uphill

second. A closer look (below), illustrates how severe the penalty is for coming up short here, miss

it in the right bunker and the scorecard will swell. Even a green hit in regulation on the fourth will

not yield many easy putts on this twisted & quick surface.








The sixth is only 317 yards from the black tees, it plays slightly uphill, but the green sits in a

valley at the base of the large dune (which is the teeing ground for the magnificent 7th). Although

you'll have a wedge into this green, it must be precise to have a legitimate birdie chance on this

large well undulated surface.






When you climb the hill and turn the corner, the only word that comes to mind is Wow! The 7th,

played 191 yards to this left flag, I'd suggest hitting to the center of this green - regardless of pin

position (and get outta there). I took the bait and drew a 6 iron pin high that trickled down the slope,

leaving a near impossible par. Although the shot is pretty severely downhill, check the wind and club

accordingly.

 





The 454 yard eighth, is all you want from a tough par 4. No margin for error here . . . notice the

actual resort hotel going up in the background (set to open later this year).

 

 



This middle hole position on the elevated eighth green was a gift on such a tough green to hit in

regulation.





The tee shot here on the ninth, is a great design by Doak, a slightly blind tee shot with plenty of

room to get the ball in play here . . . anything left of the menacing bunkers on the right will leave

the player in a good position on this 575 yard - par 5.


 



The fairway bunker on the ninth, is a prime example of Doak perfecting the craft.


 



The approach at the ninth is guarded by a medium size Live Oak, and four bunkers. It should be noted

that the ninth hole does not return to the clubhouse at Streamsong Red or Blue.



 


The tenth hole is a medium length par 3 that plays as long as 187 yards from the tips (green) and

as short as 103 yards from the forward tees (gold).





Objects are deeper than they appear - this left greenside bunker at the tenth is to be avoided at

all costs, if you look closely you can see my ball at the bottom right side of the bunker . . . short

siding that pin was a big mistake.





The 408 yard twelfth, keep it in the fairway here to set up your approach to a tricky green.





The mound in the middle of the green does provide a slight backboard to the front hole location,

but will also force the player to be precise.




The thirteenth, at only 312 yards from the green tees & 279 from the silver tees, can be had with a

big knock, but beware of the "Fools Gold" here, it's pretty much green or bust here (as the hole

narrows greatly the closer you get to the putting surface. Making an up & down is unlikely if the tee

shot strays in either direction.



 


The fourteenth tee is one of the few at Streamsong that require a carry over water, plenty of room

left here, don't over think it. This 545 yard par 5 will require three good ones to have a birdie chance.


 



The third shot at the 14th is pretty straight forward.


 



The uphill 16th is the toughest of the par 3's at Streamsong Blue, playing uphill at 237 yards, it's

a beast. I played it to a front right pin at 205 yards, slightly downwind - with a 4 iron, it was by far

my best strike of the morning round, a high bomb that surely would hit the front of the green and

trickle towards the hole for a gimme deuce . . . much to the contrary, it bounced as if it hit

asphalt and rolled over the back of the severley sloped back to front green. A tough bogey to digest.


 



The 590 yard seventeenth at Streamsong Blue felt like a coastal hole to me, the hole ascends into

the horizon in the most natural way. When reaching the green, I still expected to see crashing waves

beyond the site lines, even though fully knowing we were in the middle of the peninsula. This hole,

even though a par 5, might require your 3 best strikes in succession just to have a chance at birdie.

5 is a great score here.





If 17 requires your best three shots, 18 will require your two best. At 478 yards from the back

tees, and a stout 439 yards from the Silver tees, it might be best for most to play this hole as a

par 5 as well.The green sits between the seventh tee on the Red and the clubhouse (in the

background above). Avoid the cross bunkers, the green is receptive and tilts back left to front right.

 

 


The approach at the 18th



I continue to be asked which course is better, and I seriously don't have an answer. I prefer certain

holes on each layout. My favorite holes at the resort are as follows (in no particular order): Blue #1,

4, 6, 7, 9, 17, 18. Red #3, 4, 7, 8, 13, 16, 17. The Biarritz 16th on the Red is an instant classic as far

as I'm concerned.


As I've stated before, the service at Streamsong is top notch, from the bag drop/valet staff, to the

pro shop, caddies, starters, and the food and beverage team - they enhance the experience in a setting

unlike any other in the Southeast United States.


There are a thousand different golf destinations in the state of Florida, very few of which are unique in

their topography and design, Streamsong has leaped into the bigtime of World Wide Golf destinations,

kudos to the Mosaic company for the vision (to bring in Doak & Coore/Crenshaw) and Kemper Sports for

the leadership to pull it all together as it is today. *(The 216 room lakeside lodge opens later this year)


 

To learn more about Streamsong: http://www.streamsongresort.com/










 
Streamsong Red PDF Print E-mail

 

Written by: Jason Bruno

 

Streamsong Resort officially opened its two courses about 6 months ago, and since that time the 36

hole facility has garnered much acclaim from the golf media as well as design aficionados. After all,

two of the best modern architect design teams were the shapers of this disbanded phosphate mine,

now known as the Red & Blue courses at Streamsong. There is no profound story as to how these

routings got their name, simply by the Sharpie ink color used on the blue prints outlining each hole.

Since the courses intertwine through each other, the different colors were used to differentiate the

Doak (Blue) from the Coore/Crenshaw (Red). I've been asked by many, "Which is better, the Red or

the Blue?" After my third visit I truthfully don't have an answer, but playing both is a must. In this

edition, we detail Coore/Crenshaw's Red Course.



The Biarritz 16th at Streamsong Red is the signature hole, but it is just one of many exquisite designs

at Streamsong.

 

 


Photos by: Jason Bruno

The clubhouse at streamsong





1st tee


Get a good warm up in, because the Red starts off with a 474 yard beast, favor the left side off

the tee on this slightly uphill par 4.





555 yd par 5- 2nd tee


Another tough tee shot here on the second, the sand on the left is a good aiming point with a soft

fade.






2nd green


The green at the 2nd is fairly tame, a tier runs across the middle of this large green, and the back

left portion tends to slope off, note this back left pin placement. Nothing real tricky about this putting

surface though.





3rd tee, par 4 - 404 yards


The 3rd hole is played from an elevated tee and sweeps left to right, important to find the shortgrass

here, thick vegetation left and right will wreak havoc on your scorecard.





4th approach


The short 4th can be reached with proper conditions, because Streamsong plays firm and fast

moderate length hitters (like myself) can hit their best and expect some chase on their tee shots.

I played this hole one tee up (312 yards) and after my best knock, reached the false front . . . but

my work had just begun (see the green below).





4th green


I'm a firm believer, if you give the player a chance for the birdie grab, make the grab tough, and boy

did they ever. Check out this amazing green complex . . .  in case you're wondering, I did convert

the bird.





5th tee


The back tees (Green) on the Red are 7148 yards, the next set (Black) are 6584 yards, so unless

you play this game for a living, I suggest picking the appropriate set of tees. A prime example would

be the 5th hole, 453 from the tips, 344 from the next tee up  - big difference.





185 yard - 6th, The 18th on the Blue runs parallel - just to the left of this par 3, separated by a

large sand dune.





7th tee


The 7th hole is another gorgeous hole, and Coore/Crenshaw do a nice job of giving you elevated

tee boxes on the most beautiful holes, no exception here on the slight right to left par 5 playing

527 yards from the tips.





Par 3 - 8th


The 8th is the shortest hole on the course at 147 yards, it's no secret that Crenshaw is a fan of

Dr.Mackenzie. Here it appears that Gentle Ben may have channeled Mackenzie's work at Austrailia's

Royal Melbourne.





9th hole


This crossbunker isn't in play on the uphill drivable par 4 here, playing 321 yards from the tips, 271 from

the black, 257 from the silver and 227 yards from the forward tees.





The 486 yard par 4 - 10th tee





The 11th hole continues the trek uphill, but you must contend with the fairway bunkers guarding this

right to left design.





The 500 yard - 12th hole, I thought I made a great birdie here after hitting driver/rescue and a

solid two putt. After writing 4 on the card and circling it, I noticed the card said it was a par 4

. . . strap it on here and hit your two best, the slight downhill should help your chances.





535 yard - 13th hole


Notice the sequence of uphill. uphill, downhill, uphill here to start the back nine. The routing is

masterful, and as you can see the sand and bunker work is as good as there is.





The approach to 13 is a challenge, it's a blind shot - notice the dune fronting the green and the

dune in the backdrop. If there was coastline and fescue here, this place would play as true a links

as the courses at Bandon. As far as southeast U.S golf is concerned, it is as close as you get.





The par 3 -14th is as tough a par 3 as there is here at the Red, the green is exposed to the elements,

keep away from the two left bunkers, they swallow golf balls. Notice the uphill par 4 - 15th in the

background.





15th approach


The 474 yard - 15th is the toughest par 4 on the property, playing straight uphill with the green

perched on a plateau.





The Biarritz 16th at Streamsong Red plays 208 from across a ravine, this will be the defining shot

of your round on the Red, and with nowhere to miss . . . even the perfect shot here assures nothing

with the Raynor replica green lurking. Front to back, the Biarritz green surface is 70 yards deep.





The view from the front of the Biarritz. (After playing/walking all 36 holes in about 8 hours without

a break, my camera was out of juice by 15 green, so I corralled a cart and finished the photo session

on holes 16-18).





After playing 15 and 16 you wonder what you have left in the tank, and more importantly, what

did Crenshaw/Coore have left to design, certainly they had already showed us all of their looks.

Nope, the 17th might end up as the most underrated hole on the property, considering it follows the

Biarritz. The bunkering on 17 is like a work of art - from an insane mad man . . .




In this case two mad men - Crenshaw and Bill Coore's bunker work has evolved into some sinister

version of Doak's sand creations, here is a perfect example on the right side of the 17th, the bermuda

turf edges are gnarled as if they were torn off by some mythical beast or natural disaster . . . exactly

the look they sought out to create.





Tee box on the par 5 - 18th


They started you out tough on the front nine, they reward you with a par 5 to finish, at 443 yards

from the silver tee and only 505 from the black, you can get healthy here. Favor the right center here.





The 18th green is fronted by this cross bunker, but it shouldn't come into play unless attempting to

reach the green in two shots. The surface slants left to right, so a draw is the preferred play into

the 18th green.





The practice area for resort guests at Streamsong is tucked beside the 18th on the Red.



In a state that boasts over 1000 courses, the Red is near or at the very top of that list, infact, the

combination of Coore/Crenshaw & Tom Doak designs in the same location - can only be found in 3

destinations in the world: Bandon Dunes, Barnbougle Dunes in Tasmania and here at Streamsong Resort.

Top 100 status in the U.S & possibly the world, are likely to follow for Streamsong Red.

 

With Florida resident rates for the summer and caddies available, now is a great time to play Streamsong.

 

 

http://www.streamsongresort.com/




Next up: The Blue Course at Streamsong by Tom Doak.












 
McArthur Golf Club PDF Print E-mail
Written by BRUNO   

 

The clubhouse at McArthur Golf Club

 

 

Unlike the famous club next door where Tiger Woods and many other famous tour players hone their

game, McArthur is a club that maintains a lower profile. You don't see Tim Rosaforte on the Golf

Channel reporting from McArthur, or hear about all of their famous members . . . in fact there isn't

even a grandiose entryway that announces the clubs presence, you could drive down US1 thousands

of times and never even know that you've passed by. There are two wrought iron gates that grant you

access to the mile long drive through native vegetation of Slash & Loblolly Pines and Palmetto that

eventually lead to the elegant yet modest Old Florida-style clubhouse .

 

 

In a golf rich area like the Palm Beaches and the Treasure Coast, it's unlikely there would be a club

of such impeccable design quality that it could go unknown to so many. McArthur Golf Club in Hobe

Sound, Florida is situated along the same stretch of US-1 as Medalist, and just a dozen miles north

along the sand ridge that runs parallel to the Atlantic (Donald Ross' Juno Beach Masterpiece-Seminole

sits on the southern end of the ridge). McArthur is an ultra exclusive club in a area where private

is the norm. Clubs like Jupiter Hills, Loblolly, Lost Tree, Old Palm, Dye Preserve and the Bear's Club dot

the golf landscape here. Co-designed by Tom Fazio, but McArthur is the brain child of Jupiter Island

resident and 3 time Major Champion Nick Price . . .  make no mistake, this is Nicky Price's baby.

 


The 447 yard uphill 2nd at McArthur

 

 

This 480 acre site is draped by the native sand, which is the primary feature that runs through the course

design at McArthur. With only 90 acres of turf placed strategically, Price and Fazio created a Pine valley

esque landscape in South Florida and it was fully intended to be so. "We tried to create something that

we've seen in Pine Valley and other wonderful courses, it's all about the golf." The club gets it's name

from McArthur Dairy Farms, which is the primary shareholder of the Club. Price along with Dolphins Hall

of Famer Dan Marino are original investors at the club.

 


The Par 3-third, at only 150 yards it's the shortest hole at McArthur, but if you take a close look at

the green, you can see that it's far from the easiest. On the day I played it, the wind was into at 15-

20 mph and just hitting (and holding) it in regulation was a tall order.

 


 

 

The 417 yard fourth plays over native vegetation from the tee

 

 

The 7,205 layout combines challenge and native beauty, everything has a natural feel at McArthur. The

use of Coquina replaces the need for concrete cart paths. Although it all appears completely natural,

Price & Fazio did move a million cubic yards of sand to create drainage, ponds for irrigation and to create

some of the dunes that really enhance the look, feel and playability of the layout.

 

 

The longest hole at McArthur is the Par 5 - fifth at 594 yards

 

 

 

 

The shortest par 4 at McArthur is the 6th at 383 yards

 

If you look closely at the tee box on the right, you'll see the tee markers are actual milk jugs. Attention

to detail is at an elite level at McArthur.

 

 

 

 

 

The 188 yard - par 3 thirteenth

 

 

 

 

The 542 yard par 5 fifteenth

 

Price talked about his design theories that went into creating McArthur "I'm not a big risk reward

proponent, I believe that the golf course is about angles. If you have the ability to hit the ball to a

particular side of the fairway or to shape your tee shot, you will be rewarded." The greens at

McArthur are well undulated, and super slick . . . keeping your approach shots below the hole is

absolutely a must in order to score at McArthur.

 

 

 

 

198 yard par 3 - seventeenth

 

 

 

McArthur is tough, but not in any way tricked up . . . it's a course that rewards precision and touch, as

well as expert course management. With a slope and rating of 75.5/146 from the tips, it's advisable to

choose the correct set of "Milk Jugs" to play from.

 

The chocolate chunk cookies they serve inside the clubhouse are a treat worth noting, and as we all

know . . . nothing goes better with cookies than milk. Nick Price's gem in Hobe Sound might be much

less known than it's high profile neighbors, (and I'm sure they prefer it that way) but as far as a pure

golf club is concerned, McArthur is just that - PURE.

 

http://www.mcarthurgolf.com/

 

 

 

 

 



 

 


 
Eagles Mere Country Club PDF Print E-mail
Written by BRUNO   

 

 

Eagles Mere Clubhouse

 

 

 

Eagles Mere Country Club, is set in the mountainous region of north eastern Pennsylvania in Sullivan

county, nearly 200 miles northwest of Philadelphia. The town of Eagles Mere is a rural environment

with a small population. The nearest town with any semblance of civilization is Williamsport - some

30 miles away. Williamsport is known as the annual home of the Little League World Series.


Eagles Mere Country Club is a private course designed by William Flynn (designer of Shinnecock Hills

and a fixture at Merion for decades. The club itself was formed in 1911, but the course (originally 6 holes)

opened in 1913 (which according to club historian Joe Mosbrook, might have been designed by a gent

named George Young). Sometime later, Flynn was brought in to complete the 18 hole layout. Then in

the 1920's, Flynn was working on completing a second 18, which later became abandoned because of

the depression.

 

Eagles Mere has long been an upstate mountain retreat for members of clubs like Merion, Aronimink and

Pine Valley. At just under 6,200 yards from the tips, one would suspect that the place is a pushover and

can be overpowered, but nothing is further from the truth. First off, for whatever reason (maybe it's the

mountain air) you never get a sense that the place is only 6177 yards, it just doesn't play that way.

You can actually hit driver on most holes, but as was the case with many of the old classic courses,

the ability to work the ball around doglegs and tree lines was - and still is paramount at Flynn's no-

nonsense mountain layout.



 

 

The 514 yard par 5 - 2nd (check Flynn's design of the berm that surrounds the back of this green)

 

 

Once you get into the round, you quickly notice that the course is not overly penal, but it's greens

more than make up for its lack of length tee to green. The routing is brilliantly scripted throughout

the constantly cambering property. On our visit there last summer, former assistant professional

Matt Alwin was tour guide.

 

 

On the short 328 yard third, there are no bunkers, but the large evergreen hedge that lines the

entire right side of the hole - will swallow up any errant shot to the right.

 


 

 

The Par 3 - fourth is only 126 yards but if you miss the green right to avoid the bunker, good luck.

The surface slopes away from the player and right to left . . . take three and get outta there.

 

 

 

 

Par 4 - sixth

 

The 371 yard sixth was my favorite on the front nine, not only because of it's beauty, but also because

the design presents the player with options. If you can carry the ball 250 yards, you can hit driver

and opt to carry the rock ridge to the fairway below. . . a fairway wood or hybrid to the main fairway

on top still leaves a short iron approach to a well protected green.

 


 

The par 3 downhill ninth

 

 

 

 

The par 4 thirteenth has a stone formation right smack dab in the middle of the fairway, catch it

just right and pick up some serious yardage.

 

 

 

 

The 471 yard uphill fourteenth is the brute of Flynn's design at EMCC. After being toyed with by

Flynn's twisting and turning finesse holes, he demands that you hit your two best knocks here.


 

 

 

Another view of the fabulous fourteenth (looking back from the fifteenth tee).

 

 

 

 

The green on fifteen is typical of Eagles Mere's greens, small in size with run offs in abundance,

they're quick and very well undulated, they will test even the sharpest of shortgames.

 

 

 

 

The 482 yard finisher is a short par 5, the chance to get home in two is likely even for the medium

length player.




Although private, Eagles Mere does offer a variety of stay and play packages for non members with

accommodations at either the Crestmont Inn or the Eagles Mere Inn with breakfast served daily.

EMCC is a William Flynn design that is very enjoyable, loaded with character and won't beat you up

tee to green . . . but your wedge game and putting better be dialed in if you are to score well here.

 

Cheers to Superintendent Don Keefer and special thanks to Head Professional Seth Kanaskie for

hosting us.


For more info visit: eaglesmerecc.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 
Medalist Golf Club - Tour Pro Mecca PDF Print E-mail
Written by BRUNO   

 

 

 

It's hard to find a place to start when the feature subject is Medalist Golf Club in Hobe Sound,

Florida. Medalist is not only a haven for established tour veterans (including Tiger Woods), but also

young aspiring professionals. In the early days of the club - nearly twenty years ago, Medalist was

known as the impossibly difficult layout that was the love child of Pete Dye and Greg Norman. In 1995,

Shell's Wonderful World of Golf presented a match at Medalist between the two best players in the

game (at the time): Norman & friend Nick Price. The winner was clearly the course, with neither player

breaking par (with a few train wrecks, and even fewer birdies). Over the years the Medalist evolved

and perhaps the golf course became more member friendly, but that wasn't necessarily a good thing

. . . which leads us to the saga of The Shark vs Medalist President Mr. De Mudd.

 

 

 


The drama had been going on for awhile, and reached it's climax in

December of 2012. Disagreements between Norman and the club hierchy

led to the Aussie leaving the club for good back in December, and taking

all of his possessions (including Claret Jugs, memorabilia and the Great

White Shark that adorned the walls of the club).


 

 

 

 

 

The biggest bone of contention with Norman was the hiring of Bobby Weed (once a protege to Dye) to

restore the original Dye/Norman design. I personally find it strange that Norman is no longer part of the

club he created . . . could you imagine if the Green Jackets showed Bobby Jones the door at Augusta

many years ago. The end result is that Norman requested his name and Pete Dye's no longer be

associated with the course design in any way shape or form, the club honored that request and is

planning on moving forward with the Bobby Weed Re-design.


If you want more detail on the whole Norman/Medalist saga, Geoff Shackelford has a full account of

the blow by blow at:

http://www.geoffshackelford.com/homepage/2012/12/28/greg-normans-letter-to-medalist-members.html

 

The Clubhouse at Medalist

 

 



7th at Medalist (behind the green) - check the gorgeous Loblolly Pine that frames the fairway



The Palm Beach/Jupiter area is the epicenter for the world's best players right now, with Ernie Els, Luke

Donald, Rory McIlroy (and Michael Jordan) at the Bear's Club. Tiger Woods, Ricky Fowler, Dustin Johnson

& Keegan Bradley are all members at Medalist. Next door to Medalist, many Tour Players are members at

Nick Price's exclusive MacArthur Golf Club. Just a few miles south in Palm Beach Gardens is the PGA of

America, PGA National - home of The Honda Classic and Raymond Floyd's Old Palm Golf Club, the U.S

headquarters of Chubby Chandler's clients: Charl Schwartzel, Louis Oosthuizen & Lee Westwood, who

just relocated from Woksop, England.

 


Par 3 - 8th has Pete Dye's imprint all over it, bulkhead frames the angled water line.





11th at Medalist is a good example of the green complexes at Medalist, large undulations with runoffs

that repel even a marginal approach. this is where Norman's largest influence on the design is present.



The topography at Medalist is fairly ordinary for the region if compared to some of the other great

courses in the area, the ones that immediately come to mind are Jupiter Hills, and Seminole that

share the same elevated ridge that runs along North Palm Beach thru Juno Beach to Jupiter Island.

Medalist is for the most part - flat, and is carved out of Florida Slash Pines, Loblolly Pines and Palmetto

Palms on a sandy base just west of the Atlantic shore line. The green complexes and strategic hole

designs are certainly the strength of the course. The practice facility is as good as it gets, and the

atmosphere in and around the clubhouse that is nurtured by Director of Golf Buddy Antonopoulos, is

just what you'd expect from an establishment with the membership of the Medalist Club. "Our little

area of Florida is such a great place to live, that a lot of the Tour guys have moved here," Buddy

Antonopoulos said. There are so many wonderful places for these guys to play golf and work on their

games. The fact that quite a few of them, including a player of Tiger's stature have chosen to become

members here, says a lot about our club and our membership.


The 452 yard - 9th hole



As Medalist member & Golf Magazine panelist Jeff Lewis summed up: "I have played a few hundred

courses I would rather play than Medalist, but I don't know a club I'd rather belong to".

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 




 
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