The crowds are gone, the days are growing shorter and all across the country visions of birdies dance through golfers’ minds. It’s a local secret that the best times to hit the links in the Grand Strand is during the fall. With cheaper fares, nicer weather and shorter wait times at the area’s 100 championship golf course, autumn is the perfect season for a Grand Strand golf getaway. With so many amazing local golf courses, each engineered by the most respected names in golf and tailored towards every playing level, it may be difficult to decide where you and your friends want to play first. Not to worry, the Myrtle Beach Golf Authority is here to make your decision a little easier with in-depth looks at a few of the Grand Strand’s premier golf courses.
This week, we will be looking at the course that started it all; Pine Lakes International Country Club. Situated less than a mile from the Atlantic Ocean, Pine Lakes has transcended the realm of simple golf courses to become the stuff of sporting legends. It was on this Par 70 masterpiece in 1954 that a group of Time Life, Inc. executives gathered to finalize the formation of a weekly sports magazine that later became Sports Illustrated. For over 90 years, this stunning course has been providing an unrivaled experience to countless generations of golfers.
Affectionately nicknamed “The Granddaddy”, Pine Lakes is the oldest golf course in Myrtle Beach. The course was first designed in 1927 by Robert White-first president of the Professional Golfers’ Association (PGA) America and co-founder of the American Society of Golf Course Architects. Known then as the Ocean Forest Country Club, White originally designed the course as a 27-hole venue that would complement the elegant Ocean Forest Hotel. After major renovations during the 1940s, the course was remodeled to feature its current 18-hole layout. In 1996, Pine Lakes Country Club was added to the National Register of Historic Places. Pine Lakes is also home to the Myrtle Beach Golf Hall of Fame.
Today, the Granddaddy allows guests to relish the timeless elegance of the Old South and the freewheeling spirit of the 1920s, without having to sacrifice any modern comfort or luxury. The back nine still reflects White’s original design, including lush fairways that wind through stunning natural dunes and beautiful freshwater lakes. The remodeled front nine was designed to enhance the elegant experience which generations of golfers have come to associate with Pine Lakes Country Club.
Pine Lakes’ traditional layout means ensures that you will have to use every club in your bag as you wind your way around the course. Although it’s the Par 4s that truly give Pine Lakes its distinctive character, successful shot planning on the Par 3 and 5 holes can mean the difference between euphoria and heartache. The front nine Par 3s require distance and strength, while the two Par 3’s on the back are guaranteed to put your short game to test. An insidious sand trap lies in wait like a coiled serpent ready to strike near the green on the front nine’s only Par 5. Despite being a great shot-making opportunity, this tricky hole requires pinpoint accuracy. Hole #10, the back nine’s sole Par 5, is more straight forward than its front nine counterpart; the only real danger coming from the increased elevation of the green.
A story waits around every bend of this gorgeous course. Day-in and day-out, golfers from around the world flock to Pine Lakes like pilgrims drawn to a sacred shrine. Whether you’re enjoying one of Robert White’s signature holes or your simple strolling through the Myrtle Beach Golf Hall of Fame, you can’t help but feel the weight of history all around you. Play on Pine Lakes once, and we guarantee you will be back again for more.
If you and your party are interested in playing Pine Lakes Country Club during your next Grand Strand golf retreat, build your custom golf package today with the Myrtle Beach Golf Authority.
Keep Calm and Golf On Carolina!