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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Look 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
I 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.