Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point in Bronx, N.Y., Golden Nugget in Lake Charles, La., and Wickenburg (Ariz.) Ranch are included in the list of golf properties making their anticipated debuts this year.
A list compiled by GolfAdvisor includes the anticipated openings of U.S. golf properties in 2015, plus properties reopening this year after extensive renovations, and new golf courses that opened in late 2014.
Trump Golf Links Ferry Point, Bronx, N.Y. — Well more than a decade in the making and with a reported price tag of $100-200 million, Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point—New York City’s new municpial golf course—is finally reaching the finish line and has an official opening date of April 1. Designed by Jack Nicklaus and John Sanford, it’s set at the base of the Whitestone Bridge in the Bronx, and is the first public New York City course in more than a half century. Donald Trump assumed management of the construction in 2012 and will operate the course. Open to the public (non-NYC residents will pay more), it’s already been named host of the 2017 Barclays in the FedEx Cup Playoffs. C&RB has followed Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point throughout its development.
Golden Nugget, Lake Charles, La. — The new Golden Nugget casino and 750-room hotel is now open. The property’s 18-hole golf course, located next to the existing Tom Fazio design, Contraband Bayou at the L’Auberge Resort, is planned for an April opening.
Grand Falls Casino & Golf Resort, Iowa — In Iowa, near Sioux Falls, S.D., the Grand Falls Casino & Golf Resort is set to debut an 18-hole course designed by Rees Jones. The course opening was a delayed a season as a result of the harsh winter in the Midwest. The countryside course can play more than 7,100 yards and has some casino bells and whistles like a 30-foot waterfall.
Wickenburg Ranch, Wickenburg, Ariz. — About an hour or so northwest of Phoenix, Wickenburg Ranch is set to open on February 7 as part of a new master-planned community. The course was originally scheduled to open in 2008 but was put on hold during the economic downturn. Planned as a private club, the course will offer public tee times in the first year. C&RB reported on Wickenburg Ranch’s planned February opening.
Canyons Golf Course, Park City, Utah — Park City’s Canyons Golf Course has been a long time coming and will officially open this spring. C&RB reported on the golf course’s dedication in October 2014.
Bluejack National, Montgomery, Texas — Tiger Woods’ first U.S. golf course design, Bluejack National, is presently underway just north of the Houston area. Planned as a high-end members club, Bluejack National is being built atop the shuttered Blaketree National. The course is scheduled to open in the fall. C&RB has followed Bluejack’s development since 2014.
Reopenings in 2015 (After Renovations):
- Trump’s overhaul of the 90-hole Doral resort in Miami continues in 2015 with the reopenings of two courses after significant renovations: the Golden Palm and Silver Fox courses. Both are set to debut in early 2015 and promise entirely new playing experiences from the existing Silver and Gold courses. Red Tiger reopened in late 2014, and the Blue Monster reopened just prior to the WGC Cadillac Championship in the spring. C&RB reported on the opening of the Blue Monster in February 2014.
- In San Antonio, the Golf Club of Texas has been closed for most of 2014 as it received a significant $3.5 million renovation. The course is being reseeded with Zoysia turf and is set for a grand reopening in March. C&RB reported on the renovation in October 2014.
New Golf Courses that Opened in Late 2014:
- Reflection Bay at Lake Las Vegas, which closed in 2009, reopened for play in the fall.
- The exclusive Montesoro Golf Club, shuttered during the economic downturn, reopened as Ram’s Hill at Borrego Springs. The Tom Fazio design, located between San Diego and Palm Springs, can be played for $150, or $75 in the afternoon.
- At Walt Disney World, the transformation of Osprey Ridge Golf Club to Tranquilo at Four Seasons Walt Disney is complete. The hotel opened and the Tom Fazio-designed course, with a modified routing, is fully operational.
- Also in Florida, historic Fort Myers Country Club, a former Donald Ross club that is now city-owned, was extensively rebuilt by architect Steve Smyers and is now a 7,000-yard-plus, par-70 design from the tips. The course reopened October 31, 2014.
- In Georgia, Pete Dye and Tim Liddy rebuilt Ford Plantation from the studs. Members of the high-end private club gave Dye an unlimited budget to modernize the course that sits along the Ogeechee River near Savannah.
New Golf Courses Scheduled for 2016 (and beyond):
- In Dallas, Trinity Forest, designed by Coore & Crenshaw, is slated for a 2016 opening. It will be private, but due to its partnership with the city of Dallas, at least 25 percent of rounds must be public play.
- In Michigan, the much-anticipated second (and third) course at Forest Dunes is currently under construction. The Tom Doak design, which can be played in reverse (like the Old Course in St. Andrews), will alternate directions on a daily basis.
- Also in the Midwest, Sand Valley is Mike Keiser’s newest project and currently under construction. The first 18 holes are scheduled to open in 2017. C&RB has reported on the status Sand Valley throughout its development.
- At Whistling Straits, planning is still underway for a fifth Pete Dye course at the Kohler Resort. This will be located just up the Lake Michigan frontage from the Straits Course. C&RB reported on the fifth course’s development in 2014.
- On the coast of southern Oregon, Pacific Gales is under development. Though the owners had planned a 2016 grand opening, the Oregon Coast Alliance invoked a challenge to the project in the fall. C&RB reported on the project in March 2014.
- Last year, Tom Fazio-designed Branson Creek, one of the area’s top plays, was purchased by Johnny Morris, owner of Bass Pro Shops, and renamed Buffalo Ridge Springs. Morris also bought Murder Rock Golf Club. Top of the Rock, a stunning par-3 course, was added to the Champions Tour rotation. And now, another neat concept was announced in 2014: Big Cedar Lodge, a 12-hole course designed by Gary Player’s firm. No opening date has been announced yet. C&RB featured Big Cedar Lodge as the cover story of its October 2014 issue.