On a sunny and cool mid-December morning, PGA Golf Club showed off its newly renovated Ryder Course to the golf media. PGA Golf Club is the main attraction at PGA Village, the flagship property of the PGA of America – located in Port St.Lucie, Florida (less than a two-hour drive from Orlando and Miami and is just under an hour from West Palm Beach). The home to 3 distinct golf course designs by Pete Dye (Dye Course), Tom Fazio (Ryder) and Jim Fazio (Wannamker). The in-house renovation project on the Ryder Course was led by 2016 Superintendent of the Year Dick Gray.
Along the first tee these plaques commemorate past Ryder Cup competitions.
Named after Samuel Ryder (founder of the Ryder Cup), the Ryder Course features a Carolina-style setting where many of the holes gently traverse through mature stands of Slash and Loblolly Pines. The Tom Fazio design features numerous lakes and ponds along its fairways and green complexes, many of which come into play. The Ryder Course renovation is the final piece of a $10 million multi-year property-wide investment to upgrade every element – from the clubhouse to the last blade of turf on each of the courses. “Our dedicated staff has accomplished an impressive transformation that cements PGA Golf Club as a top golf destination in Florida,” says Jimmy Terry, PGA Senior General Manager. “The stunning renovations are shining examples of our dedication to providing great course conditions day in and day out to our club and PGA members, as well as guests.”
The routing on the new edition of the Ryder remains unchanged, however, all of the bunkers have been updated and new drainage installed. Turf throughout has been replaced – Paspalum tees, Celebration fairways, and Tif-eagle greens provide an eclectic mix of turfgrass – each specialized for a specific playing application. Perhaps the two best examples of the renovation work and Tom Fazio’s design, come back to back at the par 5 fourth and par 3 fifth.
The tee box here on the left to right 484-yard par 5 fourth is easily one of our favorite and no doubt is among the most beautiful in South Florida. The ideal line here is the dip in the tree line (W shape), with a slight cut shot. Be sure to check the wind here and adjust accordingly. Anything solid just inside the bunker line leaves a tasty risk-reward proposition – whether to lay up or go for the green . . .
The new green complex at the fourth was moved slightly left and given a Dye-style bulkhead.
If the fourth rewards power and courage, the 137-yard par 3 fifth is a brilliant challenge of your precision and restraint. The shortest hole on the course will repel the greedy pin seeker, especially when the pin is front left as it is here (shown above), play for the center of the green and take your chances with the flatstick.
This image of the left to right finisher gives a great visual of the beauty and style of the property at PGA Village. On the Ryder course, all tees have been framed by ornamental grasses (above).
A look at the approach on the last shows off Fazio’s signature bunkers.
|What was a golf property in decline and disarray five years ago, is nowback on the map as of one of the nation’s most memorable golf destinations. Recent upgrades to nearly every facet of the property- all three courses (at PGA Golf Club) along with the clubhouse and dining facilities is no minor accomplishment.|
A big kudos to what GM Jimmy Terry, Agronomist Dick Grayand staff have been able to do here insuch a short periodof time.
For more information on PGA Golf Club: https://www.pgavillage.com/