I’ve played a lot of courses so far in my golf life. One of the things I struggle with is ranking courses. I usually like most places with a few exceptions. I tend to give courses the benefit of the doubt if the green fee is low or if they are catering to a budget-conscious crowd. To me there is no point in blasting a place for some scruffiness when you are paying under $50 for 18.
So, despite all of the previous paragraph I am going to attempt to give out my superlatives of the Top 100 courses I have played. I probably won’t be able to keep it to one course for each category, but I’ll do my best :). I will try to keep this updated as I play more. Send me your opinions!
Overall Favorite Course
- California Golf Club of San Francisco
- Merion Golf Club (East)
- Honorable Mentions – Boston Golf Club, Eastward Ho!, National Golf Links of America
Best Conditioned Course
- Crooked Stick Golf Club – This may surprise some people, but I will explain. The day I played the course played firm, but not like a links course. You could nip chip shots off the turf with ease. The greens were firm, but fair. Tee to green it was the best I’ve seen.
- Prairie Dunes Country Club – The Maxwells definitely knew what they were doing. In my opinion, the best set of 18 I have played.
Best Conditioned Greens
- The Broadmoor Golf Club (East) – If you miss a putt here it is your fault. I’m not sure I saw any imperfections on these surfaces.
- Monterey Peninsula Country Club – Quite simply some of the smoothest and fastest I’ve ever seen.
Most Interesting Greens
- Boston Golf Club – Crazy undulation and wide-ranging sizes make these not like many others in the world of golf.
- Pasatiempo Golf Club – Alister MacKenzie, enough said. Need more evidence, see the 16th green.
Most Unique Course
- Tobacco Road Golf Club – There is no other course like it that I have played. It’s like playing on another planet, in a good way. Strantz was a genius.
Most Difficult Course
- Bethpage State Park (Black)
- Butler National Golf Club
- Pikewood National Golf Club
Most Scenic Course
- Arcadia Bluffs Golf Club
- Pacific Dunes
- Pebble Beach Golf Links
- National Golf Links of America – Second in notoriety only to the iconic windmill, NGLA’s clubhouse is super old school. It is beautiful and features a great view of the water.
- Oak Hill Country Club (East) – What more can you ask for? The tudor style with the yellow color stands out. Plus there is a bowling alley!
- California Golf Club of San Francisco – The whole place is chill. It’s all about the golf. The men’s grill/bar area has dark wood everywhere and is one of the nicest places I’ve had a post-round drink.
- Eastward Ho! – Similar to Cal Club, but with a wonderful view of the water on The Cape. From what I could see, a fun membership and laid back atmosphere. Beautiful clubhouse as well.
Most Historic Feeling
- Merion Golf Club (East) – Bobby Jones closed out the Grand Slam here. The clubhouse is super old school.
- Pinehurst Resort & Country Club (No. 2) – Payne Stewart fist pump and tons of memorabilia give you goose bumps.
- The Harvester Golf Club
- Wild Horse Golf Club