Knollwood Country Club - New York - USA

Knollwood Country Club,
200 Knollwood Road,
Elmsford,
New York (NY) 10523,
USA


  • +1 914 592 7411

Few golf courses in the United States have as much architectural history as Knollwood Country Club...and much of it stems from bad luck! But first the good luck (or perseverance): Knollwood claims to be the oldest golf course in the United States that has never shifted locations.

Now the bad luck (kind of): The original course was designed by the little-known Lawrence Etten, but a more marquee name would enter the picture when A.W. Tillinghast came around. He urged the club to purchase another piece of property adjacent to the current course, which it did. However, Tillinghast’s services were later relinquished (never good luck). They seemed to be in luck, however, as Seth Raynor was hired a year later to handle the design. In an even more unfortunate series of events, Raynor died before he could complete the job.

Finally, in one more stroke of positive luck, Raynor’s associate Charles “Steam Shovel” Banks completed the route that can be seen today. Players should expect to see the latter pair's signature template holes in play around the property, thanks to the renovation work of Ian Andrew.

Not history per se but still worth noting: The Metropolitan Golf Association — one of the most well-regarded golfing associations in the U.S. — has its headquarters on the premises.

If the above article is inaccurate, please let us know by clicking here

Write a review

Reviews for Knollwood Country Club

Average Reviewers Score:
Description: Originally designed in 1894 by Lawrence Van Etten, the course at Knollwood Country Club was last remade by a who’s who of Golden Age architects: A.W. Tillinghast, Seth Raynor (who died before the course was completed) and Charles Banks. Canadian Ian Andrew completed a remarkable restoration in 2016. Rating: 6 out of 10 Reviews: 2
TaylorMade
M. James Ward

Knollwood is a good layout but unfortunately, when you're located nearby to a stacked depth of top tier courses throughout Westchester County, it can be hard to have the spotlight shine on you. Nonetheless, for those who are enamored with golf course history, a visit to Knollwood can be inspiring.

The course has a quality mixture of holes and is blessed with terrain that engages the body and mind. The long history of Knollwood goes back to 1894 and an initial layout was created by Lawrence Van Etten. That layout would be changed through the handiwork of the following: A.W. Tillinghast, Raynor and eventually Charles "steam shovel" Banks. The "new" course was eventually opened in 1927.There was also a quality updating by architect Ian Andrew in 2016 which has brought to life a number of design elements that were present via the past architects involved.

Overall, the most striking of holes comes with the finale. The long

par-4 18th -- at 473 yards commences from an elevated tee and is simply a delicious hole that will be ingrained in your memory long after the round concludes. The drive zone is protected by a steam on the right that widens out to a pond and must be carried on the approach. The green is angled diagonally from lower right to back left and a solitary bunker is placed close to the left side. To leave the green with a par is a true triumph of high-quality shotmaking performance.

What's interesting is that when you conclude the round -- there's a fine 19th short par-3 hole that takes you immediately next to the clubhouse. The hole was created by Seth Raynor and is viewed as the first of its kind to settle wagers between players.

There are two other quality holes with the strong two-shot 6th and the uphill par-3 8th to a Redan-style green that is angled and features steep fall-off int he right rear.

What's interesting to note is that Clifford Roberts, the longtime major domo at The Masters was a member of Knollwood during his days when working on Wall Street. The club was also home to golf's first family -- the Turnesas.

Willie "The Wedge" Turnesa joined in 1939 and had an outstanding amateur career -- twice winning the U.S. Amateur and both playing and Captaining the American Walker Cup team. His brother Mike would become the long-time head professional until retiring in 1987.

Knollwood does have a few pedestrian holes that lower its overall quality but there's enough present to get the golf juices flowing. If Knollwood were located somewhere other than Westchester County, it's overall design would shine even brighter given the plethora of engaging architecture located nearby.

February 21, 2022
6 / 10
Reviewer Score:
TaylorMade

Respond to above review
  Was this review helpful?
0 people found this review helpful

Doug Roberts

Knollwood is an old course with charm. It was the first course I played which had a 19th hole. Rules of play in this area require a caddie but most play is via cart with forecaddies. It has greens of much interest. And has some of Banks bunkers. A good variety of holes and is a joy to play. It sits in shadows of so many great courses in the area. Knollwood offered opportunities for many to have a nice place to play while not per se breaking the bank.

January 04, 2021
6 / 10
Reviewer Score:
TaylorMade

Respond to above review
  Was this review helpful?
0 people found this review helpful