Jeffry nominated the Birdwood Golf Couse as a GEM and it was added to the Top 100 website in January 2011. Jeffry’s comments are as follows: “The University of Virginia’s golf course, Birdwood has been recognized as one of the top collegiate courses in America and hosts the highly ranked UVa men and women’s golf teams. Its 500-acre setting offers a variety of terrain in the foothills on the Blue Ridge Mountains.”
Set within a hilly 570-acre property that was purchased by the University of Virginia in 1974, the Birdwood course was unveiled to the golfing world by Maryland-based architect Lindsay Ervin a decade later.
Now owned and operated by the Boar’s Head Resort, Birdwood is still home to both the men’s and women’s golf teams from the University of Virginia, but a far greater number of ordinary fee paying golfers are now able to appreciate the undoubted charms of such a fine course.
Dye Designs carried out a renovation of the course in 2005, but everything changed in 2018. Scot Sherman, lead architect at Love Golf Design, picks up the story:
“Plans for a new tennis stadium, new golf team building, new entry road, and other infrastructure provided the university with an opportunity to look at using some of the existing golf property for these facilities. So, this in turn led us to consider rerouting the old course and building a brand-new layout on unused adjacent property to allow for building expansion.”
The new Davis Love III-designed golf course opened to the public on July 1 2020. “Our challenge was routing the new 18 to interface with the existing clubhouse while still also passing by the historic Birdwood Mansion,” said Sherman. “So, it was clear that new property was to be used in the process. This certainly opened up wonderful views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and gave us very interesting property on which to build the new 18 and other facilities.”
The home stretch of the revised Birdwood course features three signature holes at #15, #16 and #17 which surround the historic Birdwood Mansion.
Amazing course from start to finish. Lots of blind tee shots and narrow fairways make for a challenge especially if you're playing from the Cavalier tees!
Birdwood is one of the better university golf courses you'll play, and the Davis Love design team has done a fantastic job of completely overhauling the layout as well as creating really fun, interesting greens as well as closely mown green surrounds. The course played fast and firm the day we played it to bring out the most in these green surrounds. The front nine is the stronger nine as it sits on the more open, rolling piece of property with plenty of elevation change and some spectacular views. The par 5's 10 and 12 are excellent par 5's, but the back does lose a little bit of flow as it runs away from the foothills and back around the clubhouse. The only negative would be that the closing stretch isn't quite as good as the first 13 holes and the par 3's all play from similar length of 200 yards from the 6500 yard tees, other than 7. Overall, definitely worth the drive to play if you're anywhere near the area.