Boston Golf Club

Boston Golf Club – Played July 2016

  • Rankings: Golf Digest #74, Golf Magazine #81
  • Location: 19 Old County Road, Hingham, Massachusetts
  • Year: 2005
  • Architect: Gil Hanse
  • Course Access: Private
  • Walking Rules: Caddies Available

Score Card Information:

  • Championship: 7,062 yards, Par 71 , 74.8 Rating/139 Slope
  • Back: 6,740 yards, Par 71, 73.4 Rating/136 Slope
  • Member Stake: 6,462 yards, Par 71, 71.0 Rating/131 Slope
  • Middle: 6,279 yards, Par 71, 70.6 Rating/128 Slope
  • Forward: 5,021 yards, Par 71, 69.6 Rating/125 Slope

This is one of the more modern courses in the Top 100 rankings seeing as it opened in 2005.  It is just to the south of downtown Boston.  While the distance is short, the trip duration will depend on time.  Boston has some bad traffic so plan for that when you are heading in for your tee time.  Being that this is a Boston-area course, I was not surprised to hear my caddie say they have had groups with Tom Brady, Tedy Bruschi, Randy Moss, and Tuuka Rask.

I haven’t had the opportunity to play any Gil Hanse courses so I was looking forward to this.  I figured it would serve as a good introduction to his work and give me somewhat of a connection to Olympic golf since he designed that course as well.  I had a morning tee time on a Wednesday morning.  There weren’t too many people at the course when I got there.  After I was taken care of very well by the bag drop attendant and in the pro shop, it was off to meet my caddie and get started early.

I decided to play the member stake tees and all yardages will be from those tees.

Hole 1 – 485 yards – Par 5

The first hole is a pretty short par five with a tree-lined fairway that is nonetheless quite wide.  The only real trouble on this hole is a creek short of the green.

BGC 1-1

BGC 1-2You will also want to avoid all of the bunkers you see below.

BGC 1-3This view of the green also gives you a nice look back up the entirety of the hole.

BGC 1-4Hole 2 – 387 yards – Par 4

This view gives you an idea of what you are going to see on this course.  The big rock outcropping, long native grasses, and trees along the edges of holes.  I like this motif and it reminds me of other New England courses I have played.  This shot is straightforward in that you need to keep it a little left of the rocks.

BGC 2-1The green is partially hidden on the approach by the contours.

BGC 2-2You will start to see some very interesting green contouring and this green is no exception.

BGC 2-3

BGC 2-4Hole 3 – 420 yards – Par 4

On this longer hole you want to keep the ball on the right side of the fairway.  The bunkers really shouldn’t be in play.

BGC 3-1I really like the visual of this green.  As you can see right of the green is basically dead.  This flag on the front right of the green is very dangerous.

BGC 3-2

BGC 3-3Hole 4 – 353/413 yards – Par 4

As you can see from the listed yardage this hole can play from two different tees.  I played it from the shorter distance and took three wood off the tee.  The landing area is blind, but a good line is just right of the bunker.

BGC 4-1The approach is seen below.

BGC 4-2This green is quite large, but other than the big ridge there isn’t too much undulation.

BGC 4-3Hole 5 – 313 yards – Par 4

This is one of the most unique holes on the course.  You will see what I am talking about when we get to the green.  It is pretty short and you can attempt to drive it, but the green is hidden from the tee.  The prudent play is to hit it to the top of the hill.

BGC 5-1Now you can see what I am talking about.  This green runs off to the left and is tiny as you will see in the next photo.  I never thought I would be this nervous with a 56 degree in my hand!

BGC 5-2

BGC 5-3Hole 6 – 157 yards – Par 3

This is a great hole.  It reminded me of Prairie Dunes a bit.  The green is very large, but has some treacherous pins.  The green is hourglass shaped.

BGC 6-1

BGC 6-2Hole 7 – 423/374 yards – Par 4

This hole was played from the longer yardage making it a brute.  There is a good bit of room here, but you are best served keeping it up the left side.

BGC 7-1The approach features trouble up the right side, but the ability to run up onto the green.

BGC 7-2

BGC 7-3Hole 8 – 210 yards – Par 3

This hole is visually intimidating as all you can see is long grass.  There is a lot more room in front of and around the green than it appears.  You have to appreciate a little deception from Hanse.

BGC 8-1

BGC 8-2The subtlety of this green is very well done and I liked the mounds off to the side of the putting surface.

BGC 8-3Hole 9 – 429 yards – Par 4

The ninth is a very difficult hole, but one of my favorites on the course.  The tee shot is straight downhill, but the hazard on the left is not as in play as it would appear.  It is quite a ways out there.  If you can keep your ball left you will have the best view of the green.

BGC 9-1From the right side of the hole you cannot see the green and have some tree trouble to avoid.

BGC 9-2The photo doesn’t do it justice, but there is a lot of uphill slope from here to this pin.  You can make it out if you look closely.

BGC 9-3Hole 10 – 390 yards – Par 4

The back side starts off with a downhill hole where you cannot see the landing area.  You will want to keep it up the right side.

BGC 10-1This is the view from the tenth tee.  You are looking back at the Boston skyline.  I thought this was a nice touch and mentioned it to my caddie.  He said the club recently took out trees for this.

BGC 10-2When you get down from the hill you face the following downhill approach shot.

BGC 10-3

BGC 10-4Hole 11 – 178 yards – Par 3

This was about the only complaint I had with the course.  This tee is not the listed yardage and the caddie said he had never seen it here.  That is all fine, but I didn’t like the visual being blocked out by the foliage.  It’s just something that irks me.  Other than that it’s a really good hole.

BGC 11-1

BGC 11-2Hole 12 – 398 yards – Par 4

The tee shot isn’t too bad here.  The real test is the approach shot and around the green.  It is a blind fairway, but there is enough room.

BGC 12-1This shot can be long and anything short will roll back quite a long way.  This is a severely undulating green as you will see.

BGC 12-2Look at the slope around this flag!  I am not sure you can find a harder pin position in New England.  You have to be perfect with your speed to keep it up there.  I envy no one having to chip to this one as I did.

BGC 12-3Hole 13 – 407 yards – Par 4

This one bends to the right and really favors a fade.  Overall it is one of the tamer holes.  A good drive and approach and you will be ok.

BGC 13-1

BGC 13-2

BGC 13-3The green is very large and has less slope than some of the others we have seen in recent holes.

BGC 13-4

BGC 13-5Hole 14 – 390 yards – Par 4

My caddie mentioned this is one of the favorite holes of the membership.  I can see why since it is great from start to finish.  The tee shot bends to the right and is partially blind.  You can get away with hitting three wood here for accuracy.

BGC 14-1The approach shot below.

BGC 14-2

BGC 14-3Hole 15 – 517 yards – Par 5

In case you hadn’t noticed we have not had a par five since the first hole!  That is a bit odd, but I didn’t really notice it.  The course still plays with a great flow.  The hole bends to the right and features a lot of sloping in the fairway.

BGC 15-1

BGC 15-2This is a crazy third shot because if you get too far right you cannot see the green at all.  The view below is tough to get to, requiring a precise second shot.

BGC 15-3The contouring in this green is something else.  It looks like a choppy lake.  The pin is stuck way to the right and on top of a mound.  I haven’t seen many greens like this.

BGC 15-4

BGC 15-5Hole 16 – 340 yards – Par 4

The course gives you a little break here with a short par four.  The flip side of that is that you need to be a little more accurate off the tee.

BGC 16-1The approach features some really good bunkering.  It also has an homage to the famous “Principal’s Nose” bunker template which you will see in the second photo.

BGC 16-2

BGC 16-3You get a short hole, but you get a small green.  Them’s the breaks!

BGC 16-4Hole 17 – 500 yards – Par 5

Our second par five in the last three holes has another blind landing area which as you have seen is quite common here.  You want to keep your drive left of the big mound in the middle of the photo.

BGC 17-1Here is the view when you crest the hill.

BGC 17-2

BGC 17-3The fairway transitions almost seamlessly into the green.  There is some serious break at the back of the green.

BGC 17-4Hole 18 – 165 yards – Par 3

Not many courses end with a one-shotter, but I like it.  It’s quirky, but good.  This one is no pushover either.  It is uphill with some large bunkers guarding the front of the green.  The difficulty there is that they sit quite a bit below the putting surface.

BGC 18-1

BGC 18-2I wanted to give you a look at the short game area designed by Brad Faxon.  Faxon, a Rhode Islander, is a putting wizard.  It wasn’t busy when I went by, but this is a great amenity for the membership.

BGC - SGBelow is a look at the very modern locker room.

BGC - LRI was treated very well here and I had the course almost completely to myself.  I didn’t see another group the entire time I was out there.  Everyone from the bag drop attendant to the head pro were very gracious and welcoming. I didn’t have a chance to get any food since I had to get back to see the family, but I imagine it is great.  The facilities are understated and fit the vibe of the course.  This place is top notch!

Playing my first Gil Hanse course was a delight and I really gained an appreciation for his talent.  I look forward to playing more of his tracks.  Boston is my favorite city and it was a pleasure to finely play golf in the area.

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7 thoughts on “Boston Golf Club

  1. Jimmy,

    Awesome looking place! Nice pics. I’ve never played a Gil Hanse course but I like the look of it and the green complexes. Some of the playing corridors look somewhat narrow, is that how it felt or is it more open than some of the pictures make it look?

    Cheers
    Josh

  2. Never had the pleasure. Courses like this are off limits to me because I don’t have your knack for getting access. I did manage to get one round at the Country Club in Brookline, and that is the only Top 100 course in my ledger. Glad you had a great day, the place looks beautiful. Typical New England style golf. Kudos !

    -Brian

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