There used to be a time – not too long ago – when par-three and short courses barely garnered more respect than miniature courses with dragon mouths and mammoth turf covered ant hills.
Not anymore. That was then, this is now.
A proliferation of superb short courses like The Cradle at Pinehurst, Top of the Rock at Big Cedar Lodge, The Hay at Pebble Beach and Preserve at Bandon Dunes has propelled the genre to new heights.
The latest great new short course is the Little Sandy at Omni Amelia Island Resort, 30 miles north of Jacksonville, Florida.
Designed by Beau Welling, the 10-hole, par-3 course is nestled around Red Maple Lake amid dunes, sandy native grass areas and stunningly beautiful landscaping.
With holes ranging from 70 to 125 yards, the course is played through a lowland marsh habitat on TifGrand Bermuda grass. The 10th hole plays to an island green to provide an entertaining finish to every round.
“It’s playable for all skill levels and promotes camaraderie and community,” Welling says. “Beginners can play the ball close to the ground and more seasoned golfers will find challenge on the bold, contoured greens.”
The innovative, well-respected Welling has been involved in the the creation of over 120 golf courses and development projects worldwide, including Quinto do Lago North Course in Portugal, Stanford University Course in California and Grove Park Inn in North Carolina. Among Welling’s several current projects is the West Course at the PGA of America’s new Frisco, Texas headquarters.
Adds Welling about Little Sandy: “We have created a course where players could use just their putters on nearly every hole or use several clubs in their bag, if desired. The relaxed atmosphere and golf course strategy that includes multiple routes from tee-to-green makes Little Sandy a haven for fun and creativity.”
Other amenities at Little Sandy include an accompanying 18-hole putting course and a newly constructed check-in location featuring a shop with logoed merchandise and a food-and-beverage outlet with comfortable seating on an expansive shaded porch overlooking the golf course.
Little Sandy is open to all resort guests and members of the Amelia Island Club.
Omni Amelia Island Resort exudes the Florida good life with 402 oceanfront guest rooms on 1,350 acres with the largest pool deck in northeast Florida and 3 1/2 miles of wide, uncrowded beach.
In addition to Little Sandy, the resort offers play on two exceptional 18-hole layouts –the Pete Dye designed Oak Marsh and the Tom Fazio designed Long Point golf course.
So, whether you tee it up a lot or hardly ever, Omni Amelia Island Resort has a course for you to play and have fun.