Recent NC Golf Course Reviews


thegolfinguy
Lakeland, FL
33 Reviews
The Country Club of Whispering Pines is a 36-hole facility owned and managed by Brown Golf Management who also owns nearby Foxfire Golf Club. This gives local Brown Golf members access to 72 holes of championship golf in the Pinehurst Area of North Carolina! More on that in a minute.

The original 18 holes at the Country Club of Whispering Pines opened for play in 1962. An additional 9 holes were added in 1965, and the club operated as a 27-hole facility for about 4 years until 1969 when the final 9 holes were added. Since then, changes have been made and some hole rerouting has taken place and the Country Club of Whispering Pines is now a 36-hole facility. The courses have been renamed the River (formerly the West) Course, and the Pines (formerly the East) Course. Both courses were designed by Donald Ross protégé Ellis Maples way back in 1959 and 1965 respectively and share one thing in common – variety. One example of this is the types of grass used on the greens – The Pines features Champion Bermuda and The River, Bent grass.

Before your round, head over to the practice area, where you’ll find a full-length driving range, a practice pitching green complete with sand bunkers, and two putting greens to get you ready for your round.

The River Course
The River Course features towering oak trees that line the fairways and overhang several greens. The River course is not as demanding as the Pines Course (a slope of 130 on the River versus 134 on the Pines); however, you’re still going to have to play the role of shotmaker if you want to score well out here. Especially on the back none, where water is present on every hole. The greens are smaller and the rough is thicker, so it’s best to be hitting out of the short grass on a regular basis. There’s more emphasis on accuracy than on distance.

The River Course plays to a par of 71, and from the back tees, plays 6,521 yards with a course rating of 70.8 and a slope of 130. Most golfers will choose the White Tees, which play 6.044 yards (69.0/126) and be challenged the entire round. Ladies typically play from 5,140 yards.

Memorable Holes
The 4th hole plays 396 yards from the White Tees and requires you to thread your tee shot through a narrow opening between pine and oak trees. If you can hit a draw, now’s the time. A good drive will leave a negotiable-length approach shot to an elevated green that slopes severely from left to right. It’s handicapped number 5, but plays much tougher.

Number 10 is where the water really starts to come into play, and in a big way. It’s a big, sweeping dogleg right par 5 that plays 533 yards from the White Tees. If you try and cut the corner or hit it too far right, there is a pond waiting to greet your golf ball. Although it brings the sand traps up near the green into play more, this hole is best played down the left side.

Your round on the River Course concludes with the toughest hole on the back nine. Number 18 plays 394 yards from the White Tees. It’s another hole where left is best and takes the pond on the right out of play. Avoid the bunker that guards the left side of the green and the one short right and you’re well on your way to a successful completion.

The two courses at The Country Club of Whispering Pines offer peace and relaxation. Out here, you far removed from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, all that’s left to do is put that little white ball in the hole. Eighteen times!
I spoke with several members while I was there who all raved about the dining room and how well Brown Golf Management was doing in restoring the club to its former splendor. The Grill features all of your clubhouse favorites and what’s most impressive – they all taste good. From the Grilled Reuben to the Ellis Maple Burger, you’ll enjoy every bite. They also feature several beers on tap and have a full bar.

According to the members, one of the best thing about joining the club is that you have access to unlimited golf at two 36-hole facilities in the Pinehurst area, as well as unlimited range balls.

The Country Club of Whispering Pines also has 32 hotel-style rooms as well as 9 condo/suites for those looking for a stay and play vacation. The rooms are a short walk to the clubhouse and first tee include free wireless Internet access, unlimited use of the outdoor pool and tennis courts (as well as the 24-hour fitness center.

For more information on The Country Club of Whispering Pines or to become a member, visit their website www.countryclubofwhisperingpines.com.


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Date Played: July 21, 2017 | Cost: $0.00


thegolfinguy
Lakeland, FL
33 Reviews
  
Foxfire Golf & Resort just outside Pinehurst, NC exemplifies what Sandhills golf is all about. Tree-lined fairways, large elevation changes and lots of sand is what you’ll find on either of the Gene Hamm designed 18-hole championship courses. Golf Digest has awarded Foxfire Golf and Resort 3.5 stars in their Places to Play Guide.

The fairways on both the Grey Fox and the Red Fox courses follow the natural contours of the land and play through natural rolling hills, sandy soil and multiple lakes. Players must avoid numerous strategically placed bunkers and natural hazards as they make their way up – or many times down - to large, elevated greens.

The Grey Fox Course plays 6,781 yards from the back tees with a course rating of 72.9 and a slope of 130. Most golfers will have all they can handle from the White Tees (6,294/70.6/128). Grey Fox is considered the tougher of the two Foxfire courses, although the slope says otherwise. It emphasizes the need for shot placement rather than length although from time to time, a long drive doesn’t hurt. It is certainly the hillier of the two courses, as can be seen standing on the first tee, a long sweeping dogleg right around a lake with pine trees waiting to hinder anything errant.

The first hole plays 511 yards from the White Tees and is the #1 handicap. It’s a 3-shot hole for just about anyone. Your tee shot plays downhill to a very small landing area unless you hit it short of the water. The next two shots play uphill; get used to it. Your layup is of the risk/reward variety; choose the right club and distance to leave it in the narrow fairway, short of the strategically placed fairway bunkers. Then it’s a short pitch shot to an oddly triangular green. A front pin placement can be tricky as it will be closely guarded by bunkers on either side. Par is a good way to get started.

Number 6 is the only hole that requires a long carry over water – you’ll need to hit to about 200 yards; don’t get cute and try to cut off too much or you’re likely to find the water. At only 345 yards (White Tees), a good drive and good pitch can result in a good score.

Number 11 is a very narrow hole that plays 389 yards (White tees) with trees framing either side of the fairway and a lake that comes into play on the right about 110 yards from the green. It will take a well-controlled drive and approach shot to reach this triangular green, well protected on the left and back with bunkers.

Sixteen, seventeen and eighteen are a challenging trio of finishing holes. Sixteen (483 yards/White Tees) is a narrow par 5, that, with a good drive is reachable in two. Just be careful of the three traps that surround the green. The par 3, 17th plays 153 yards (White Tees) and has bunkers guarding the front left and back of the green as well as a large oak tree if you push it too far right. The green is 31 yards deep so picking the right club is important. The finishing hole is a dogleg left par 4 that plays 394 yards - and all of it. Play down the right side to leave the best approach angle into a small green that is well protected by sand. It’s a great hole to end a fun and exhilarating round.

Once upon a time, the Hamm courses at Foxfire were considered two of the best in the area. Now, Brown Golf Management is working to restore these courses to their former glory. Both courses offer a challenging but fair opportunity for you to experience Sandhills golf at an affordable price.

Brown Golf Management is offering some incredible membership opportunities that give members access to both of their 36-hole Pinehurst facilities – Foxfire and The Country Club of Whispering Pines. As a member, you’ll receive unlimited golf, full access to the practice facilities including unlimited range balls and full access to other Brown Golf-managed facilities in NC, SC, FL and PA. All for one low, monthly rate.

Foxfire and Whispering Pines also offer stay and play packages that include accommodations, golf and meals. For more information, visit their website at www.foxfireresortandgolf.com.

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Date Played: July 20, 2017 | Cost: $0.00


thegolfinguy
Lakeland, FL
33 Reviews
  
Foxfire Golf & Resort just outside Pinehurst, NC exemplifies what Sandhills golf is all about. Tree-lined fairways, large elevation changes and lots of sand is what you’ll find on either of the Gene Hamm designed 18-hole championship courses. Golf Digest has awarded Foxfire Golf and Resort 3.5 stars in their Places to Play Guide.

The fairways on both the Grey Fox and the Red Fox courses follow the natural contours of the land and play through natural rolling hills, sandy soil and multiple lakes. Players must avoid numerous strategically placed bunkers and natural hazards as they make their way up – or many times down - to large, elevated greens.

The Red Fox Course
While the Grey Fox Course may be the tougher, the Red Fox Course is clearly the member’s favorite. From the back tees, Red plays 6,735 yards with a course rating of 72.9 and a slope of 134. A good time can be had by most from the White Tees (6,339/70.7/128). Ladies will find the Red Tees (5,201/70.2/124) to be quite a challenge. In all, the Red Fox course offers five sets of tees with a distance to suit any player.

Wide open, well-manicured fairways and large, elevated greens that roll fast and true await golfers of all ages and abilities. Fairway bunkers abound throughout the course and lie in wait in many landing area as well as around the greens. You’ll find water on about 6 holes, but only one forced carry off the tee of any significant length is required.

Although it doesn’t require you to carry a pond or creek off the tee, water plays an important part in Number 2 being handicapped the toughest hole on the course. You’ll really need to favor the right side of the fairway to avoid the water that comes into the middle of the fairway from the lake on the left. From there, you’re looking at a long, uphill approach shot to a large green with a false front that is well guarded by bunkers. It plays much longer than the stated yardage on the card – (390 yards/White Tees).

The par 5, number 9 is a 490-yard par 5 that can be reached in two if you can keep it on the right side of the fairway, past the dogleg. A small pond guards the layup landing area on the left side and you’ll need to fly your approach shot onto the green as it is surrounded by sand on all four sides. The green is relatively flat and good scores can be made here.

Number 17 is a fairly long par 4 at 175 yards from the White Tees and the triangular green is totally surrounded by sand. It’s probably the most challenging of the par 3s as it requires you to fly it onto the putting surface from a pretty good distance away.

Last Word
In designing Red Fox, Hamm put in plenty of “bail out” areas so you’re not constantly facing severe drop offs or deep bunkers if you don’t hit the green. Once upon a time, the Hamm courses at Foxfire were considered two of the best in the area. Now, Brown Golf Management is working to restore these courses to their former glory. Both courses offer a challenging but fair opportunity for you to experience Sandhills golf at an affordable price.

Brown Golf Management is offering some incredible membership opportunities that give members access to both of their 36-hole Pinehurst facilities – Foxfire and The Country Club of Whispering Pines. As a member, you’ll receive unlimited golf, full access to the practice facilities including unlimited range balls and full access to other Brown Golf-managed facilities in NC, SC, FL and PA. All for one low, monthly rate.

Foxfire and Whispering Pines also offer stay and play packages that include accommodations, golf and meals. For more information, visit their website at www.foxfireresortandgolf.com.

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Date Played: July 18, 2017 | Cost: $0.00


thegolfinguy
Lakeland, FL
33 Reviews
Beau Rivage Plantation Resort of Wilmington, NC
  
The Beau Rivage Golf & Resort is like no other golf course – or resort for that matter – in the Carolinas. Sure, you can find plenty of courses in the state with fairways framed by towering Carolina pine trees. And there are several resorts that feature lush, Bermuda fairways leading to TifEagle greens. Or maybe it’s that the course drains better than any other course in the area. It has never been closed due to rain, in fact their motto is “never cart path only.”

The first thing you’ll notice as you drive up Rivage Promenade in Wilmington, NC, is the charming Old Southern Plantation, the centerpiece of the Beau Rivage Golf & Resort. Apart from the playing of the game everything happens in this building: check in, checkout, dining, drinking, the pro shop and the rooms.


Dining
The Veranda Bar & Grill serves breakfast and lunch/dinner and neither one should be missed. It’s worth getting to an early tee time extra early, just for the breakfast. Whether it’s one of Becky’s sunrise breakfast sandwiches or her signature French toast, made with a touch of vanilla, you won’t head to the first tee hungry. After your round, no matter if it ends at noon or supper time, the Veranda’s menu has a lot to offer. Their wings are outstanding with just the right amount of heat. My wife called their grilled cheese the King of Grilled Cheese. Their burgers are out of this world. From time to time, Ellen will be called upon to cook one of her specialties, so if you see tacos or a meatball sandwich on the menu, I’d advise you to order either or both. According to Walker, plans are to add a more traditional dinner menu (steaks, chicken, seafood) as the upstairs project evolves, since there is a full kitchen that is not being used.

Beau Rivage opened in 1988 and was designed by Joe Gessner. You’re not going to be awed by its length; from the back tees, it plays a mere 6,546 yards with a course rating of 72.4 and a slope of 138. Move up to the White Tees and the yardage drops down to 6,028 yards, but still challenging (70.1/133). There is a total of five sets of tees so golfers of all abilities can enjoy themselves.

No other course in the area drains as well as Beau Rivage and the course has never been closed because of rain; in fact, their motto is “Never Cart Path Only.”


Memorable Holes
Most Memorable Hole: Number 4, “Winds Leap,” 176 yards (White Tees). A challenging hole for the guys and truly memorable for the ladies. From the back three set of tees (that includes you, seniors), this hole is all carry over a deep, man made lake. There is no bailout room to speak of; a mound to the left of the green will either propel tee shots into the abyss if you catch the back side. Hit the front of the mound and chances are it rolls back into the water. Missing it to the right is no bargain either as the sand trap makes for a tough up and down. The green can give you fits as well with a lot of subtle little breaks someone new to the course is not likely to see. I was warned about them and still couldn’t avoid a 3-putt!
To get across the manmade lake, you need to cross a manmade bridge. As you cross over, you’ll find the ladies and junior’s tees. Beau Rivage has created a floating tee box, something that is truly unique. The hole plays 83 yards from here and brings the sand trap into play. It’s real grass and is hand mowed daily. This hole is a treat for everyone!

Favorite Par 3: Number 5, “Gator Alley,” 140 yards (White Tees). Why not follow up the most memorable hole with another top-notch par 3. It’s a much shorter carry over water to a green fronted by bunkers. A far-left pin placement can be extra tricky as the green drops off quickly. Should you go in the water, be careful looking for your ball. This hole lives up to its name.

Favorite Par 4: Number 3, “Lone Pine,” 272 yards (White Tees). Because of its slight dogleg, this hole plays a little shorter than the advertised yardage; consequently, it tends to scream “Go for it Roy.” Not so fast cowboy. There is water lurking all the way down the left, so unless you can hit a controlled draw, a layup may be a better option. My advice is to aim over the boulder off the tee with a mid to long iron. Leave yourself a manageable pitch to the green but don’t pull it left or you’ll most likely find the water. Hit your ball too far through the fairway and you will experience the wrath of The Lone Pine!

Favorite Par 5: Number 13: “South Stretch,” 457 yards (White Tees). This hole starts with a blind tee shot. A good line is down the strand of bushes that separates the course from the apartment complex on the right. With a good drive the green is definitely reachable. Should you find yourself needing to layup, the left side of the fairway will give you the best angle to the green and take the greenside bunkers on the right out of play. A short pitch shot to this relatively flat green can yield a great score.

Last Word: Beau Rivage sits on a unique piece of land; it’s rare that you will find property this close to the Atlantic Ocean with 75 feet of elevation changes along the Carolina coast. The first hole plays over a valley and if you can make it to the top of the hill on the other side, you’ll have an easy pitch to the green.

As you make your way around the course, rolling hills and undulating valleys pave the way, leading to mostly elevated TifEagle greens with subtle breaks, manicured to PGA tournament level. Forests of long-needle pines border many of the fairways and can wreak havoc with errant shots. Trying to recover from the thick pine straw can prove to be quite challenging.

This place has it all: narrow fairways framed by majestic Carolina pines to test your accuracy off the tee, uphill and downhill shots to greens, plenty of sand and water, a few blind shots and some of the best greens in the area. The ups and downs of the terrain can provide some interesting lies, which can make your up and down attempts a little tricky.

If you’re not a golfer, Beau Rivage is still a fun, affordable place to stay. The rooms are considerably larger than your average hotel room, the food is great and there is live entertainment on most weekends. The resort is located 5 miles from downtown Wilmington and the island beaches. Wilmington’s historic river district has over 50 locally owned restaurants and pubs. Wilmington has a lot to offer non-golfers as well.

Beau Rivage offers golfers and non-golfers some great packages. There’s no longer a need for golfers from the northeast to flock to South Carolina for their winter and spring golf vacations. Beau Rivage Golf and Resort in Wilmington can save you considerable drive time each way, so much that you may be able to get in an extra round! To see their latest packages, visit their website at www.beaurivagegolf.com.

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Date Played: November 8, 2016 | Cost: $49.00


machead
Lanham, MD
45 Reviews
  
Day 3 and about an hours ride to catch the ferry over to Bald Head Island Country Club. We had heard a lot about this course so we decided to try it this year. This course is spectacular. Lots of water, wind and wildlife, especially alligators. We saw at least 12 of them. The fairways, greens, and Tee boxes were in Pristine Condition. The staff was great and the starter was very helpful in giving tips on ball placement and just generally getting around the course. There were only about 3 groups on the course so we could take our time and just enjoy the course and the wildlife. I believe this will be a must play whenever we go to Myrtle Beach. It was well worth the drive and I would advise anyone to add this to your golf package. This course is pricey ( about $130 including the ferry tickets) but it only added about $30 to our package as a premium course with the ferry tickets included..

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Date Played: March 21, 2016


Slainscastle
2 Reviews
  
This golf course facility is now closed and has been converted to a public park by the Village of Flat Rock.

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Date Played: May 4, 2015


Slainscastle
2 Reviews
  
This golf course facility is now closed.

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Date Played: May 4, 2015


lefty71
Baltimore, MD
108 Reviews
The Pointe Golf Club of Powells Point, NC
  
Nice course about 3 miles outside the outer banks. The Pointe was in real good condition, greens played soft, and the fairways were in near perfect shape. The course plays straight forward where there are no blind shots and you can see the flag from almost all tee boxes. Finished in about 4 hours flat.

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Date Played: September 11, 2014 | Cost: $69


jcartwright
San Francisco, CA
1 Reviews
Scotch Hall Preserve of Merry Hill, NC
  
Very friendly and professional staff. The pro gave me some free pointers on the driving range which was much appreciated. The course was well-groomed and probably better than any public course I have played in the state. I like that they have a collie around the course to chase away the geese...keeps the poop off the course.

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Date Played: July 27, 2014 | Cost: $55


4Aces
Severn, MD
321 Reviews
The Pearl Golf Links - East of Calabash, NC
  
The Pearl/East was the 2nd round for the day, and the previous review on The Pearl/West is pretty much applicable to the East course. However, the greens were horrible! I was very, very surprised. There was a mixture of grasses, some of which looked like weeds. They were very slow and bumpy, especially when you hit the weeds. This course was our 9th round in 5 days, and it was a let-down. I never have liked the layout of the East, especially #6--take a look before teeing off to ensure you select the correct club. It's a very short tee shot before hitting the water. Then, you have a sideways shot to the green. If you select the wrong club for the tee shot (which may not be your driver), you will have a high number on this hole. This course has some "funky" holes on it, which just don't make sense to me (i.e., #16). But, there are other holes like the par3 #12 which are very pretty. You have a little bit of pretty with ugly holes. Just pay attention to see which one is what to make your best decision on club selection to ensure you best scoring opportunities. As stated before, the staff is wonderful!!

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Date Played: April 17, 2014 | Cost: $30