Bob Gillespie



Where to play: Golfweek releases “Best You Can Play” featuring 15 S.C. courses

Posted 6/25/2012 3:06:00 PM

Every year, golfers across the U.S. and elsewhere anticipate Golfweek magazine’s “Best Courses You Can Play” list, which rates the nation’s best public-access/resort courses in the opinions of the magazine’s raters. And every year, South Carolina ranks among the best – and most – in its courses available to anyone with a set of clubs and a credit card.

In Golfweek's 2012 ratings, S.C.’s dynamic duo – Kiawah Island’s Ocean Course and Hilton Head’s Harbour Town Golf Links – were as usual part of the magazine’s elite, ranking 19th and 41st, respectively, among courses of the modern era (1960-present). But there’s more to South Carolina golf than those two giants – much more.

Golfweek acknowledges that fact, listing a total of 15 courses in its “Best By State” compilation. The next 13 include seven courses – No. 3 Caledonia Golf & Fish Club, Pawleys Island; No. 6 True Blue, Pawleys Island; No. Tidewater Plantation Golf Course, North Myrtle Beach; No. 8 TPC at Myrtle Beach; No. 9 Barefoot Landing Love Course, North Myrtle Beach; No. 11 Barefoot Landing Fazio Course; and No. 14 Grande Dunes, Myrtle Beach – that are individually profiled in the publication.

The rest of the S.C. lineup: No. 4 May River Course at Palmetto Bluff, Bluffton; No. 5 Dunes Golf & Beach Club, Myrtle Beach; No. 10 Heron Point by Pete Dye, Hilton Head Island; No. 12 Legends Golf & Resort Heathland Course, Myrtle Beach; No. 13 Aiken Golf Club; and No. 15 Wild Dunes Links Course, Isle of Palms.

Writer Bradley Klein, Golfweek’s architecture expert, also praises the state’s courses in his introductory article. “A well-designed golf course makes itself inviting to the public when it makes a good use of the land and doesn’t feel like it was helicoptered in or hammered into place,” he writes. “This is clear in South Carolina … where many of the leading public courses make brilliant use of native lowlands and the tidal character of the surrounding water.” Klein highlights The Ocean Course, Harbour Town, Caledonia and True Blue in his report.

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