Pine Lakes International CC
Myrtle Beach, SC
Golf Magazine's Travelin' Joe's Review, 2/09:
Highly anticipated is the March 14, 2009, reopening of Pine Lakes Country Club in Myrtle Beach. A.K.A. "the Granddaddy," Pine Lakes was the very first course in Myrtle Beach, dating to 1927, when it debuted under the name Ocean Forest. Robert White, a Scotsman who was also the first president of the PGA, first crafted nine holes, and it's that original nine that architect Craig Schreiner elected to preserve as the back nine for the revised layout.
The result is a throwback design that conjures up classic strategic shot values thanks to enhanced contouring and thoughtful hazard placement. Yardage from the tips will top out at 6,700 yards, and par has been shaved from 71 to 70. Returnees will immediately notice the lush, vibrant green Seashore Paspalum grass that now covers the entire course. "It's like taking the varnish off an old piece of furniture," says Schreiner. "If you paint something seven or eight times, all the detail gets lost. All you had to do was drop the low points of the property and raise the highs, and the golf course just jumps out at you."
Best Bar Nearby: Check out the renovated clubhouse as well. We're certainly partial to the Snug Pub , where legend has it that the idea for a magazine called Sports Illustrated was born.
From Nov/Dec 2005 T&L Golf article:
Fat Guy Summary : Somewhat of an historic anomaly in modern day Myrtle Beach, Pine Lakes began it's "life" as an 80,000 acre beachfront woodlands tract bought by 1860's contractor/business magnate Franklin Burroughs to build his daughter Ellie a resort. He died before his vision came to fruition, but then along came South Carolina textile magnate John T. Woodside in 1926, who bought the land and completed the vision by building a year-round resort called Ocean Forest. Designed to rival the Homestead and the Greenbriar, it had a 27-hole golf course, a hotel with grand ballrooms, and moonlight dancing on the hotel's broad patio. Black Monday of 1929 shrunk Woodside's land holdings, but the golf course and hotel continued to attract the likes of Gene Sarazen and Bobby Jones. Over the next 25 years, Burroughs and Franklin Co. (the modern descendant of Franklin Burroughs' company), built up the area, street by street, golf course by golf course, to become what is now Myrtle Beach SC. Pine Lakes started it all, and has become a genteel oasis in what T&L Golf refers to as "Instant Gratification, SC".
From Singapore to Spyglass, few courses have the stately and immediate gravitas of Pine Lakes. The world changes in the first 100 yards of the entrance drive, with a landscape right out of the Old South, dotted with perfectly pruned dogwoods and magnolias. The 62-room white-columned monumental clubhouse was designed in 1927 by Henry Bacon McCoy (who had just designed the Lincoln Memorial in D.C.). The current 18 holes were derived from the original 27, designed by Robert White (a native of St. Andrews and first president of the PGA). The starters and attendants all wear MacGregor tartan kilts or plus-fours as their uniforms, in deference to White.
A starter's table plaque commemorates the birth of Sports Illustrated magazine from a Time Life management conference at Pine Lakes in 1954. Ralph Lauren allegedly copied his famous "RL" crest from Pine Lakes' similar "PL" (and paid a large settlement for it). It's all so Southern upper-crust, you almost expect a mint julep to suddenly appear in your hand.
Wildlife abounds on the course, which features sometimes-invisible bunkers, wide aprons, and frustratingly small greens. White's routing rewards technicians more than big hitters. The grand old clubhouse anchors the property, but perhaps the best feature is a gentle giant named Big Dog serving Pine Lakes' famed Low Country chowder on the 7th tee. And grab a bottle of water, Big Dog's chowder has plenty of kick.
See Also: Fat Guy's Myrtle Beach SC Golf Weekend