HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. – After undergoing a recent series of subtle enhancements, Heron Point by Pete Dye at The Sea Pines Resort is better than ever.
Already ranked No. 11 in GOLF Magazine’s “Best Courses Near You” in golf-rich South Carolina, Heron Point is poised for even more acclaim. The splendid 18, along with famed Harbour Town Golf Links, gives the legendary resort not one, but two Dye masterpieces.
The maestro himself supervised Heron Point’s modifications with the objective of making the course more player friendly. Dye’s team softened the green surrounds and contours, enlarged several putting surfaces, and added ornamental landscape beds throughout the Lowcountry layout. The greens were transitioned to Tif-Eagle Bermuda, the same strand used on Harbour Town.
“Our members and guests love the changes made to Heron Point,” says Cary Corbitt, Vice President of Sports and Operations at The Sea Pines Resort. “The course is the ideal complement to Harbour Town and gives us two of the premier 18s in the region.”
Heron Point is a real looker as it’s resplendent with knotted hardwoods, lagoons and salt marshes teeming with wildlife. Like Harbour Town, Mother Nature provided an ideal palette for Dye’s legendary design prowess and unlimited imagination.
At 7,000 yards from the back tees the course is a wonderful fusion of short and long holes. It can play considerably shorter if needed as there are seven sets of tees on each hole (including ones for juniors). Golfers are challenged by a cadre of risk-reward holes, fairways that move toward and away from hazards, and Dye’s ubiquitous mounding and swales framing target areas. Playing a Dye course demands a plan of attack – his creations are golf’s version of outdoor chess.
When first building Heron Point for its 2007 opening, Dye formed new lagoons and reshaped existing bodies of water. On four holes with water guarding the greens, alternating wood and grass walls create conspicuous bulkheads, visually dramatizing the danger and peril and adding a hint of menace. Even more striking, a mixture of sand, mulch and limestone surfaces, as well as a variety of grasses, provides a vivid tapestry of color. It’s a cohabitation of beauty and beast (at times) played within the genteel rules of the ancient game.
It’s grand fun to try and match wits with the diabolical master of course design. Sure you’ll want to play where the PGA TOUR stops annually for the RBC Heritage, but glorious Harbour Town has a co-star demanding your undivided attention as well. Heron Point makes for an unforgettable golf experience, but what else would one expect from the design genius of Mr. Dye?
With the new Plantation Golf Club clubhouse and world-class golf learning center under the direction of Tim Cooke serving Heron Point and the Ocean Course, the facility is figuratively a “sea of golf” within the resort. The amenities of the 23,000-square-foot clubhouse include an expansive pro shop; Live Oak, featuring Lowcountry-inspired cuisine and rated in the top 10 restaurants on Hilton Head Island by TripAdvisor; 2,000 square feet of event space; and spacious men’s and women’s locker rooms.
Slated for opening this coming spring is the new 19,000-square-foot Harbour Town Golf Links Clubhouse. Located on the site of the old structure, it will honor the RBC Heritage with a gallery showcasing the tournament’s rich history.
There’s much new to see and enjoy at The Sea Pines Resort. As is the case with Heron Point, the celebrated destination is better than ever.
For play on its three superb layouts including Heron Point, visit www.seapines.com/golf.