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Sam Morrow

Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #50 on: December 17, 2007, 10:45:59 PM »
The Short course   at Shady Oaks c. 2,000  yards has  some  excellent greensites ,  lovely  land  and  tiny greens. I believe  RTJ sr  was  the architect of this  Fort Worth 9 holer.

I believe Langford's gem at  Culver and   Maxwell's  9 holer Coffeyville,  KS. are  both worthy of study


Since you know Shady Oaks I can ask if you have ever played Star Hollow in Tolar? I believe it was at one time a Leonard family retreat.

Michael Powers

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #51 on: December 24, 2007, 01:08:21 PM »
Whitinsville Golf Club in Whitinsville, MA is the best 9 holer I have played in the New England area.  As far as I know it is an unaltered Ross design with rolling terrain, excellent green complexes and a great set of 3-pars.
HP

Joe Hancock

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #52 on: December 24, 2007, 01:11:41 PM »
There is an excellent 9 holer in Ionia, Michigan called (now) Shadow Ridge. It used to be Ionia CC. It is nearly original Ross.

I don't know how long it will be with us, as it has changed hands once again and it is located in an economically suppress area.

I wish I could afford it as a hobby.

Joe
" What the hell is the point of architecture and excellence in design if a "clever" set up trumps it all?" Peter Pallotta, June 21, 2016

"People aren't picking a side of the fairway off a tee because of a randomly internally contoured green ."  jeffwarne, February 24, 2017

Matthew Hunt

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #53 on: December 24, 2007, 02:21:01 PM »
What precentage of an Arcitects fee's are charged fo a 9-holer?
« Last Edit: December 24, 2007, 02:23:30 PM by Matthew Hunt »

Don Hyslop

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #54 on: December 24, 2007, 05:11:36 PM »
  There is a 9 hole course designed by Stanley Thompson that sits inside Fundy National Park in New Brunswick, Canada bordering on the Bay of Fundy. Elevated tees, numerous streams crossing fairways and having to wait till the white-tailed deer get out of your way are characteristic of this Par 35 course. Green fees that start at the unheard price of $15 for 9 are unbelievable in this day and age. It is a great experience whether you a great golfer or just enjoy a great walk.
http://www.golfnb.com/flyer/53

http://www.fundyparkchalets.com/golf.htm
Thompson golf holes were created to look as if they had always been there and were always meant to be there.

ANTHONYPIOPPI

Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #55 on: December 24, 2007, 10:50:57 PM »
Don:

Thanks for posting about Fundy National Park. If I could ever find a publisher for "To the Nines - Canada," it will make the book.

Anthony


Ray Richard

Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #56 on: December 25, 2007, 07:06:29 AM »
Pine Oaks Golf Club in Easton Ma. is a quirky 9-holer that I really enjoy. Itís a par 34, Cornish/Robinson design that was built in the mid-1960ís and it features several sharp dog legs, a mean par 3, an uphill par 5 and the flat out biggest golf course pro-shop in the Northeast. The course was originally built as the back nine to the bordering Easton Country Club, a Sam Mitchell design, and the marriage fell apart during construction. A new nine for Pine Oaks was routed during the late 1960ís but wetlands and money doomed the addition.

 

Tom_Doak

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #57 on: December 25, 2007, 07:41:50 AM »
Joe:

Thanks for posting the note about the former Ionia CC.  My old associate Tom Mead was the superintendent there for a couple of years at the start of his career, and he often talked about the place.  Sounds like a road trip for next spring -- and another good reason to come see The Mines.

Tom_Doak

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #58 on: December 25, 2007, 07:52:13 AM »
Matthew:

Your question is a good one.

I think the prevailing wisdom among architects would be that a nine-hole course should cost 50-65% as much as eighteen.  It's half as many holes, but you still have to figure out a routing, you still have to go to a pre-bid meeting, and you're probably going to make more than half as many site visits.  This is in line with the conventional wisdom about maintenance costs for nine holes being 60-65% as much as 18 holes, because you still need a superintendent and a mechanic and a lot of equipment (which just won't wear out as fast).

However, having built the nine-hole course in California just last year, I am wondering if we aren't all wrong about our assumptions.  There is just so much less expectation of a nine-hole course that it doesn't have to be built at a big scale like modern 18's.  We built smaller greens and narrower fairways and fewer bunkers, so the cost of construction was nowhere near half of what it will cost to build the new 18 holes nearby (if we ever get approval to do that one).  And by the same logic, I don't think it will cost nearly as much to maintain -- certainly not once it shares some equipment and a mechanic and superintendent with its big brother, but I'll try to get the numbers for the short term for comparison, as I suspect they're MUCH lower than 18 holes would be.

To go back to your original question, I didn't charge nearly half my fee for that nine holes, because it was a throw-in on the larger deal ... but having done it, I think I will charge quite a bit less than half our fee for anyone else who wants to build nine.  The only problem is then I'll have to cross my fingers they don't ask me to come back and build a second nine alongside it the next year!

Kalen Braley

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #59 on: December 25, 2007, 11:18:56 AM »
Tom,

Interesting comments about  building 9 holers.  I'm curious as to why your fee would be far less than half what it would be for 18.  It sounds like you have plenty of your plate to keep you busy and as you said you still have to do the routing and would likely have more than half of the site visits for 18.  Is this a desire to propagate/enocurage 9 holers to be built more often, or did you lose some kind of bet with Anthony P?   ;)

mark chalfant

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #60 on: December 25, 2007, 01:59:58 PM »
Sam  Morrow:
Merry Christmas.   Unfortunately,   I have not played Star Hollow in Tolar. Next time I speak with a good golf buddy who often  travels in Texas I will ask  him.

Mark

Jon McNey

Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #61 on: December 25, 2007, 03:31:20 PM »
Sam Morrow:

Starr Hollow is a working ranch with a 9 hole course about 45 miles west of Fort Worth.  Marvin Leonard built it around 1969; Joe Finger out of Houston was the architect (I think).  It's short with two sets of tees and the 9th green is shaped like the State of Texas.  Built around a stocked man-made fishing tank, it attracts some PGA touring professionals every year when they come into town for the Colonial.  The course architecture is pretty basic, but the setting is lovely, with lots of wildlife and rolling hills.  The  greens are a common bermuda grass that is very grainy and slick/slow depending on whether you are putting with/against the grain.  The pros don't really tear it up because it's hard to make any putts.   Nothing has changed much since it was built.  The clubhouse has family photos of Ben Hogan, Bing Crosby, etc.  It's a lot of fun to play--you might see cowboys playing in boots with fishing poles and belly putters in their bags.

Sam Morrow

Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #62 on: December 25, 2007, 05:00:09 PM »
Sam Morrow:

Starr Hollow is a working ranch with a 9 hole course about 45 miles west of Fort Worth.  Marvin Leonard built it around 1969; Joe Finger out of Houston was the architect (I think).  It's short with two sets of tees and the 9th green is shaped like the State of Texas.  Built around a stocked man-made fishing tank, it attracts some PGA touring professionals every year when they come into town for the Colonial.  The course architecture is pretty basic, but the setting is lovely, with lots of wildlife and rolling hills.  The  greens are a common bermuda grass that is very grainy and slick/slow depending on whether you are putting with/against the grain.  The pros don't really tear it up because it's hard to make any putts.   Nothing has changed much since it was built.  The clubhouse has family photos of Ben Hogan, Bing Crosby, etc.  It's a lot of fun to play--you might see cowboys playing in boots with fishing poles and belly putters in their bags.


I have not been out there but heard wonderful things about it, I also have heard they make a great cheeseburger.

Don Hyslop

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #63 on: December 27, 2007, 09:24:11 AM »
 Nova Scotia with a population of just under 1 million people boasts almost 90 golf courses with about 38 of those being of the nine hole variety. There are many new executive style 9 holers often tied in with some of the newer 18 hole resort courses such as the Graham Cooke designed Fox Harbour:
http://www.foxharbr.ns.ca/golf/ but often these are par 3 courses. Two older 9 hole layouts top the list of Nova Scotian 9 hole courses in my opinion. The first is White Point Golf Club, a layout designed by the great Donald Ross. Built in 1932,four of its nine holes border the Atlantic Ocean with one hole being so close you tend to turn around and beg the pounding surf to be quiet so you can concentrate on your putt. http://www.whitepoint.com/golf.html

http://www.canadaselect.com/photoViewer.cfm?ID=2930&PID=1

Meanwhile, the Bluenose Golf Club offers 9 holes of par 35 golf with outstanding views of the World Heritage town of Lunenburg also on the South Shore of Nova Scotia. This course opened in 1933.
http://www.bluenosegolfclub.com/



« Last Edit: December 27, 2007, 09:50:52 AM by Don Hyslop »
Thompson golf holes were created to look as if they had always been there and were always meant to be there.

Greg Murphy

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #64 on: December 27, 2007, 02:05:46 PM »
Don,

Thanks for the reference to White Point. It seems to fit the mold Tyler was talking aboutóa place where golf is one of many activities such as tennis and fishing. Golf is not the sole attraction but rather adds to the attraction and is probably one of the main reasons the resort gets so many repeat visitors year after year.

The fee structure for golf at White Point is worth noting. It is common to see nine hole rates more than half the 18 hole rate, and White Point is no exception. In 2007, their green fee in the shoulder seasons was $30 for nine holes and $35 for 18 holes. During peak season it was $35 for nine holes and $48 for 18 holes. Despite the much better deal for playing 18 holes, my guess is that the majority of play is the nine hole round variety.

As a general rule of thumb, my experience has been that nine hole rates will be about two-thirds the 18 hole rate. In essence, those who play 18 play their second nine for half price and their total 18 hole cost will equal the cost of other comparable 18 holers in the area. Those playing nine holes pay a bit of a premium but don't seem to mind doing so at all.

Tom Doak noted earlier in this thread that some of the assumptions regarding costs of nine hole course construction being well above the costs for constructing 18 holes (on a per hole basis) might need to be reconsidered. I agree. The same applies to operations. On the revenue side, golfers seem very willing to accept paying more in green fees on a per hole basis when playing nine holes which helps balance out things somewhat on the operations side. Generating 20,000 rounds on a nine hole course can be like getting over 25,000 rounds on an 18 hole course.

Lester George

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #65 on: December 27, 2007, 02:55:37 PM »
David,

You should look into Kanawha Club.  I finished it two years ago and it is loads of fun.  Private (50 members) 9-hole par three.  Holes range from 105 to 240.  Great piece of property.  

Lester

Tom_Doak

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #66 on: December 27, 2007, 04:58:51 PM »
Kalen:

I would build a nine-hole course for less than half our normal fee because I think the client for a nine-hole course would be less concerned with promoting my name.  If that was the case, I would only have to make a couple of site visits and leave more of the details to my associates.  

In some respects, having twice as many holes gives you four times as many things to think about in the design process ... it's hard to keep it simple and there is much more expectation of "effort" from the client.  On a nine-holer I could communicate most of my design ideas to one of my associates in a single 3- or 4-day visit.

Mike Hendren

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #67 on: December 27, 2007, 05:57:32 PM »
Not worthy of any "best" list, GCA'ers should nonetheless play Travis' Great Dunes course on Jekyl Island.  Below is the second shot to the 500 yards Alps/Mae West 5th.



Here's the hole's green from front right with the sixth tee beyond.



Mike
« Last Edit: December 27, 2007, 05:59:25 PM by Michael_Hendren »
Two Corinthians walk into a bar ....

Greg Murphy

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #68 on: December 27, 2007, 06:25:53 PM »
Tom,

Do you recall your "alternative course thread" from a while back? I'm curious. What happened? Were any recommendations or decisions made for/by that prospective client?

For the life of me, I don't see how any one could prefer playing 18 successive par 3 holes or 18 "executive" holes (which to me, means diminished holes) instead of nine holes with a gamut every bit as strong and interesting and varied as the front or back nine of their favourite 18 hole golf course. But it does seem to be the default position for developers lacking the room for a full 18 hole course.


Mark_Rowlinson

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #69 on: December 28, 2007, 12:47:52 PM »
Nicklaus has 'built' (whatever that may mean) at Crans sur Sierre in Switzerland. I know that the original thread was about 9-hole courses in the USA, so this doesn't count, but somebody had the money to pay him to put his name to it. There is some hope of adding another nine some day, but a look at the aerial suggests that the land is already housing....

We are lucky in this part of England to have a number of really enjoyable 9-hole members' club courses (plus a 10-hole and even a 13-holer). The only trouble is that they charge an 18-hole green fee to visitors. That's not true, however, of the pay and plays or public courses, where you can pay for 9 or 18 holes.

There are those who claim Royal Worlington and Newmarket to be the best 9-holer in the world. I am not qualified to join in that argument, but I'd rather play 9 or 18 holes there than 18 on a great many other courses.

Tom_Doak

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Re:Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #70 on: December 28, 2007, 05:20:08 PM »
Greg:

Nothing has happened on that project of yet.  For now the client seems bummed out that they can't build 18 "championship" holes on the property (which is 175 acres, but by estimate about half is too steep to use), and can't let go of the idea, so they are looking into more land.

I would love to build a really good nine holes on that site.

Richard Fisher

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Re: Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #71 on: September 07, 2016, 11:21:32 AM »
Trying to find the most appropriate post to tag this comment too, so apologies to Ran for raising this vintage link from 2007...

Anyway, this is just to flag to GCA members the (very) considerable merits of the 'other' splendid 9-hole course in East Anglia, Flempton GC, which is an enticing 15 minutes' drive from The Sacred Nine itself. Seriously vaux un detour, a well-travelled six-handicap quartet from my home club in Cambridge (Gog Magog) played at Flempton in a recent Open Day and all came away distinctly impressed, not least as the whole experience (including lunch) cost less than $40 at current exchange rates. This just adds to my increasing sense that Suffolk has as good a clutch of Arble-friendly inland courses as any county in England, by which I mean fun, interesting, reasonably priced and full of doable challenge. Aldeburgh/Woodbridge/Purdis Heath/Thorpeness/Flempton/Royal Worlington, plus Thetford just into Norfold, would make the basis of a really nice trip, for those who like dry, heathy, fast-running and above all rural inland golf with properly rustic clubhouses to match.

http://www.flemptongolfclub.co.uk/

PS Thinking of Suffolk, the old seaside nine at Felixstowe Ferry, as per Bernard Darwin, was along with long-lost Bembridge a candidate for 'best seaside 9-holer in England'. I don't personally think that the expanded 18 at Felixstowe Ferry works terribly well, but I know others who disagree.

Craig Disher

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Re: Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #72 on: September 07, 2016, 02:28:31 PM »
Richard,
I had been planning on bringing up Flempton. This summer I played in a match against a Suffolk resident and hearing him say how much he enjoyed his local 9-hole club I asked if he were a member at Royal Worlington. He is a member at Flempton and was certain it was a superior course to RW, having played both countless times and having the option to join either. Has the Darwin/Cambridge connection influenced opinions to the extent that Flempton has been overlooked?

Thomas Dai

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Re: Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #73 on: September 07, 2016, 03:57:37 PM »
I haven't looked through the above posts to see if it's already been mentioned but having now played it I'd like to nominate Mulranny
Atb

Richard Fisher

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Re: Best Nine Hole Courses/Clubs
« Reply #74 on: September 07, 2016, 04:02:46 PM »
Short answer, yes. Darwin and (too often forgotten nowadays, but just as influential in a different way) Henry Longhurst, for whom the best course in the UK consisted of 14 holes of The Old Course and four from Worlington (or Mildenhall, as he and Ran would describe it), were very instrumental in the reputational status of The Sacred Nine, but so also were former Blues like Patric Dickinson (see a recent thread), Leonard Crawley and Donald Steel.

This is in way to denigrate The Sacred Nine, which is still in a class of its own, but simply to emphasise the overlooked but very considerable merits of its neighbour Flempton.

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