1441 Western Avenue,
Illinois (IL) 600422,
- +1 708 798 4700
31 miles S of downtown Chicago
Members and their guests only
Herbert James Tweedie, Harry Collis, Ray Hearn
Flossmoor Country Club started out as Homewood Country Club in 1899 and the original course was designed by Herbert James Tweedie, an Indian-born architect who was raised in Liverpool before marrying then emigrating to America in 1886. Doctor H.W. Gentles and club professional Jack Pearson are said to have assisted Tweedie with laying out the course.
Harry Collis, former professional at Blackheath in London, worked at the club from 1905 to 1929 and he upgraded the course during his tenure, starting in 1914 when a clubhouse fire resulted in the relocation of the building to a more central part of the property.
He 1915 he created the short par three 7th hole and a new finishing hole that combined the old par three 14th and par four 15th holes into what is now the uphill par five 18th hole. He also remodelled the 14th into a short par four that rewards placement over length. Collis also added the signature Flossmoor bunker to the 16th hole, which was previously unprotected.
Collis shortened the 5th hole from a par five to a par four and moved the tee on the 6th back a hundred yards to create a slight dogleg right. His work is also evident in Flossmoor’s green complexes. Many, like the 11th and 12th, take full advantage of natural slopes, and others like the 4th, 6th and 14th have slopes which flow off mounding built into the green surrounds.
Tree encroachment, green shrinkage and bunkers were all issues to be dealt with by the club going in to the new millennium so Ray Hearn was engaged in 2006 to develop a long-term master plan. Within two years, he had created a new par three at the 13th to replace the old, weaker hole and located a new green close to the pond on the long par four 8th. A program of green expansion was also undertaken on several other holes.
Another well-received modification was made to the 319-yard 4th, when the blind drive on this hole was eliminated by bulldozing the hill at the landing area to open up a sweeping view of the fairway. Removal of some old trees and significant widening of the fairway on the right, along with the installation of fairway bunkers, resulted is a fine short par four with genuine strategic merit.
Of historical importance, it should be noted that the course hosted the 1910 Women’s Amateur, the 1920 PGA Championship and the 1923 US Amateur.
The number one thing that stands out at Flossmoor is the conditioning. The greens are lightning and the bunkering is very interesting. The fairways are firm, which allow for players to take advantage of risk reward situations. The greens are minuscule and severely sloped, which means missing on the wrong side makes par impossible. A few of the greens pitch away from the player, which was pretty cool since you can't just fire at pins.
The first hole is a short, risk reward par 5 that allows for a birdie opportunity right out of the gate. 3 features a diagonal creek that forces strategy off the tee. 4 is an awesome drivable 4 with tons of options. The course really comes alive on the back with the wacky par 4 12th, which plays over Butterfield Creek to a blind green which slopes hard from front to back. 13 is a short 3 to a difficult green. 14 is a wild short 4 with a tree in the center of the fairway invoking strategy into a brutally pitched green. 16 is a beautiful hole with a massive bunker short of a perched up green. 17 is a brute of a par 4 playing over a creek and up a hill. 18 gives one last birdie opportunity as a dogleg right to a beautiful green site short of the clubhouse.
Overall, Flossmoor is a special club. The conditioning is perfect and the new management really gets it.
I played Flossmoor this past Friday and really enjoyed getting the opportunity to play it. Simply put for a guy that loves historical golf courses, this place was/is special. The front nine is fairly flat and there aren't a ton of holes that are truly memorable, however, the bunkering, the and the greens were excellent. It's imperative to stay below the hole as the greens were among the fastest I've played. My favorite hole on the front was the par 4 4th which is a short par 4. I hit a big tee shot to the right of the hole, nearly pin high and left myself a short chip and still had to grind out a par after my chip rolled off the green onto the fringe. The par 4 6th is a very tough hole. It is long and requires a cut drive off the tee. The only hole on the front I didn't care for was the eighth. It did not seem to fit with the rest of the classic holes on the course. In fact this hole prevented me from ranking Flossmoor a half ball higher. It just doesn't fit.
The back nine was really enjoyable and it seemed to be good hole after good hole. The short par 3s were a challenge and the finishing stretch, I believe is the best part of the golf course. It starts at #16 which is a par 4 with a difficult tee shot due to great bunker placement. After you get off the tee at #16, you have to navigate your second shot to an uphill green with the famous "Eleanor's teeth" bunker which protects the entire front portion of the green. #17 and #18 are both gettable par 5's but again the green complexes particularly at #17 are the defense of the holes. #18 is a great closing hole headed back to the clubhouse, it definitely is the type of closing hole that you won't forget.
In closing, I would highly recommend playing Flossmoor if you have the chance. And if you are a fan of historically significant courses, its a must play.
A great classic design with a lot of history in Chicago south suburbs. Many of the greens are not very large, but they are very very quick, and have some very severe slopes depending on where you played your approach shot. An interesting feature is the course finishes with back to back par fives. Neither is terribly long, but the 17th Green is perched on a severe upward slope. If your approach shot doesn’t make the green, it will run all the way down the hill for sometime. Definitely worth a stop if you can get on.
I just joined the club after careful review of several top clubs in the area last summer and fall. This course is a hidden gem. It is overshadowed by Olympia Fields down the street, but this course is maintained just as well. It also presents some unique challenges like lightening quick greens, and huge bunkers.