Indian Creek Country Club is at the heart of Indian Creek Island and is located between Bal Harbor and Miami Beach. Here in splendid isolation lies one of America’s most exclusive communities which is reported to be obsessed with security having its own State police force which includes 24/7 armed boat patrols around the island.
This is not one of the most accessible venues for the visiting golfer, so you’ll need to befriend a member to tee it up on the classical William S. Flynn-designed course here at Indian Creek, which dates back to the 1930s. The clubhouse itself is not only huge, it’s also an architectural delight built in an Italianate-style with multiple terraces and loggias that overlook the golf course and the bay. Some people even reckon that Indian Creek has the best locker room in the country.
Apart from some new back tees, the course at Indian Creek is pretty much a monument to William S. Flynn. From the original tees it measures a modest 6,600 yards but there’s a real eclectic mix of long and short holes, including the par four 9th which measures 470 yards and the par four 13th measuring a mere 309 yards. It’s this variation coupled with the simplicity and subtlety of the design that makes Indian Creek so special.
Very few people will be fortunate to tee it up at Indian Creek, but those that do will immediately notice that the course is polished to within an inch of its life. Some say that Indian Creek is better groomed than Augusta.
If you’ve played Indian Creek we’d love to know what you think and hope, perhaps, you might write a review?
I have played a lot of different golf courses. Indian Creek is unique, yet, relatively unknown. It is a William Flynn design and was built in 1928. What makes it unique is that it is on its own private island with about 20 houses. I probably shouldn’t call them houses as I was told the cheapest one was around $20M. It is hard to get on and it is hard to get to. The island is man-made and the result of dredging Biscayne Bay in the early 1900s. The island offers interesting vistas of Miami.
The course itself is not that long, around 6500 yards, but there is a boatload of bunkers and as the wind picked up over the course of the round it became problematic. The first hole, was a classic welcoming hole, slight dogleg left which I screwed up by plopping my approach into one of the many bunkers I was destine to be in that day. My woes continued on the second hole. If I remember correctly this 400+ yard par 4 has 6 bunkers, 3 fairway and 3 greenside. If I was a baseball player being in 2 out of 6 would warrant a multi-million dollar contract. The 3rd is a 550+ yard par 5 favor the left side as most of the 8 bunkers are on the right. It was the first hole I avoided any bunkers. The first par 3, 170 yards, is the 5th and surprise, surprise more bunkers. I was starting to feel badly for my caddy. On the tee of the 420 + yard 6th I was starting to have bunkeritis, all I could see was the 7 bunkers. I avoided them on my drive and was delighted to see that there was a lot more room around the green than I originally thought. Still a tough hole. The 7th is a short par four and a real birdie opportunity if you avoid the 3 deep green side bunkers. The 8th is a 200+ yard par 3 surrounded by, you guessed it, 3 bunkers. The good news is the middle one is about 20 yards short of the green.
The 11th is 500+ yards and potentially reachable if you are downwind. It only has 6 bunkers, 3 of which don’t really come into play. On your approach there is a lot more room to the right of the lefthand bunkers than meets the eye. The 12th and 13th are the signature holes as they run along the water. The 12th is 180 yard par 3 where water comes into play if you chunk your tee shot. On the 13th the water continues down the left hand side of this dogleg left. It also has 6-7 bunkers but at just over 300 yards a classic “how much do you want to bite off” hole. I suggest playing smart. Interestingly, all but one of the bunkers are left, which as a non-architect seem redundant to me. Regardless, my favorite hole because one I did not hot it in the sand and two I birdied it. The 15th is the shortest of the par 3s at about 150yards. Watch out for the 4 green side bunkers. The 18th is a green light special. At less than 500 yards it is a reachable par 5. Favor the right off the tee but the green is elevated an surrounded by 6 (?) bunkers. A beautiful finishing hole with the clubhouse, bay and flagpole behind the green.
If you get the chance to go you gotta do it! Practice your sand game!