Dr. Jean Harris and her rating team are continuing their rating of golf courses on the Mainland and Island. They are rating golf facilities, not only on the course itself, but also some of the amenities you look for when playing a golf course. Country Club of Hilton Head (CCHH) nestled in Hilton Head Plantation is a true “gem” of a golf course. The course was designed in 1985 by Rees Jones who has designed many U.S. Open venues. CCHH has been used as a local qualifying site for the 1999 and 2005 U.S. Opens. It has been recognized by Golf Digest Magazine with a 4-star rating. The Harris rating team felt the same way giving it a rating of 98 out of a possible 100 for the course and its amenities.
CCHH is a real challenge to the average golfer. With superb elevated greens and deep bunkers surrounding them, the golfer must be able to hit high shots into these beautiful greens. The greens are consistent throughout the eighteen holes and the tees, fairways and bunkers are well kept.
Even though the course is challenging, it is a very fair layout. You need to make sure you look at the tee signs with the hole layout before you tee it up. There are some hidden bodies of water that are not visable from the tee. Most golfers should lay up on Hole number 5 short of “Brumgart’s Pond” guarding the green. It is not unusual to see the second shot hit the bank in front of the green and end up in the water.
Well placed tee shots are needed since there are 14 dogleg holes with bunkers strategically placed where good drives can land. Bring plenty of golf balls since water comes into play on almost every hole.
Hole Number 12 is a long Par 5 and features the highest point on Hilton Head Island. It is the course’s signature hole and it takes three great shots to reach the green. Once on the green you are treated to one of the most beautiful views of the marshland and the Intracoastal Waterway.
Residents of Hilton Head Island know that CCHH is a “must play” course to bring their friends to when visiting the Island. The green fees are very reasonable especially if you take advantage of the coupons in the local newspapers and Golfer’s Guide. If you don’t mind playing in the afternoon, you can play for less than $40.
General manager, Richard Beetle, and his staff were gracious hosts. The staff in the pro shop, bag drop area, beverage cart, and snack bar were pleasant and helpful. The pro shop had a good selection of clothes, balls, shoes, etc. The course takes pride in their pace of play. You can almost be guaranteed playing in less than four hours and fifteen minutes.
The four Par 3’s are some of the most challenging in the Low Country. On each par 3 water comes into play. Hole number 14 is the best par 3 on the course requiring a carry over marshland to a shallow, elevated green that is well bunkered. The Par 4’s play longer than the score card shows. Six of the Par 4’s take a hybrid or wood to reach in regulation for the average golfer.
I highly recommend Country Club of Hilton Head for an enjoyable and affordable golfing experience. For more information on rates and starting times, call CCHH at (843) 861-4653 or visit their website at www.hiltonheadclub.com