Today I am going to tell you about the most interesting golf club to open in the United States in a long time, and my guess is, you haven't heard a word about it.
Here are some of its unique attributes:
- Even the most persnickety golf course architecture aficionados will be blown away by the quality of its multiple golf courses
- Fostering camaraderie among members is a key focus of the club
- The club maintains a strong emphasis on friendly competitions
- The membership is national in scope
- Dues are a fraction of what is often the norm
When you think of a golf club, your mental model (like mine) probably consists of a beautifully landscaped golf course
anchored by a stately clubhouse, complete with wood-paneled locker room, grill room and pro shop.
This is a very American concept of a golf club.
Over in the UK and Ireland, however, a golf club could just as easily mean a "golf society," an affiliated group of golfers who don't own or pay dues to belong to a golf course.
This type of arrangement exists here, too, but even some avid U.S. and Canadian golfers don't realize the USGA and Royal Canadian Golf Association fully recognize, "golf clubs without real estate."
For a variety of reasons, these types of clubs are much more popular in the UK and Ireland. In fact, it is not uncommon for several "golf societies" to share the use of a single golf facility as their "home" course.
For example, any visitor to the Old Course in St. Andrews has undoubtedly seen the numerous "clubhouses" along the 18th fairway, although none of these clubs "owns" the golf course (it is owned by The St. Andrews Links Trust).
This concept of the golf society was the inspiration for the new club I'm talking about.
However, unlike my example above, where the golf society plays out of a single golf course, this club has playing arrangements with some of the most architecturally significant private golf courses in the United States; designs by the likes of Seth Raynor, C.B. Macdonald, Donald Ross, Tom Doak and Bill Coore & Ben Crenshaw.
As you may of guessed, I learned about this incredible new club by reading the December 2010 issue of Golf Odyssey. If you would like to learn more about this intriguing new national golf club and/or how to join, click here to learn about the Outpost Club.