Olympic Club (Lake) - California - USA

Olympic Club,
599 Skyline Blvd,
San Francisco,
California (CA) 94132,
USA


  • +1 415 587 8338


The Olympic Club was founded in 1860 and it is the oldest athletics club in America. After the Great War, the sporting Olympic Club decided to get into golf and purchased the Lakeside course from the financially struggling Lakeside Country Club.

The course had been built on the landward side of a barren strip of hillside, which separates the Pacific Ocean from Lake Merced, the largest freshwater lake in the San Francisco area (hence the name of the course). Set on the seaward side of the hill is the Ocean course, which also belongs to the Olympic Club.

Trees are the predominant feature of the Lake course (in distinct contrast to the Ocean course) but they were planted after the acquisition to add definition to the desolate sloping topography. Despite its name, there is not a single water hazard on the Lake course – and there’s only a single fairway bunker on the entire course. You can’t lose a ball unless you get it stuck in a tree and, according to Olympic legend, three branches were once lopped from a tree and 150 balls fell out. You have been warned!

Host to five US Opens, the Lake course is a serious challenge. Take your stabilisers and expect few level lies on these sloping fairways. Don’t expect too much respite once you reach the sanctuary of the small greens either, because most of the putting surfaces seem to present you with permanent downhill putts. What’s more, the greens are lightning fast and if you miss with you approach shot you’ll be in the vicious rough.

It’s not that easy to get a game here, so we recommend that you befriend and member at your earliest opportunity. The Lake course, which is no longer visibly beside the lake, is a daunting experience.

In November 2017 the PGA of America announced that the Olympic Club will host the 2028 PGA Championship and the 2032 Ryder Cup. It will be the first time the Lake course has hosted either event.

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Reviews for Olympic Club (Lake)

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Description: Host to four US Opens, the Lake course at Olympic Club is a serious challenge. Take your stabilisers and expect few level lies on these sloping fairways. Rating: 7.6 out of 10 Reviews: 15
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Wesley Thrailkill
my dads friend is a member here, and he got me on before i went off to college. Let me tell you, an absolutely wonderful golfing experience. I had a great ballstriking day and shot a 79. what really got me on this course was the rough. If you can keep the ball in the fairway then approach shots are fairly straightforward even on sloping lies. number 18 is a nuts hole. Period
December 14, 2009
10 / 10
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Tim
The finest course I have ever played. You will not find a better stretch of holes in championship golf than 2-5. You have to shape every shot on this demanding layout, making it even more difficult off the sidehill lies. Pro can't handle it because they are used to bombing it around wide open courses, not here. No one shoots low on this course, it is just too good. Ben Hogan said it was his favorite U.S. Open course. Now that is saying something.
January 07, 2008
10 / 10
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john potter
November 01, 2009
In preparation for the 2012 U S Open the Lake course has recently been dramatically lengthened and all of the greens replaced with bent grass. It is clearly one of the top 10 in American and top 20 in the world.
John
June 02, 2011
John, you clearly have not played the top 20 in California if you think Olympic club is top 10 in America. In California alone, the following are ahead of it: Pebble, Cypress, San Francisco Golf Club, Pasatiempo, Cal Club, Valley Club, Riviera and LACC North. It is officially the most overrated course in America. The playing corridors are far too narrow and choked - this AFTER the trees were removed - and the hard bentgrass greens don't match well with the poa fairways. Granted, it's a solid golf course with a great club and a great history - even some great holes like the 18th. An elite golf course, it isn't.
Mike
July 22, 2011
SFGC, Pasa, Cal Club, Riv, and LACC are not better courses. Maybe you prefer a course that is wide open so you can spray it around and get away with it.
Mark Rabe

One of the finest courses I've had the pleasure to play. Challenging yet fair and exceptionally scenic if you happen to get a sunny day (rare unless you happen to be playing in the Fall).

June 16, 2007
8 / 10
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John McPheson
The Lake course is a challenge hole after hole. The 18th is the greatest short par 4 in the world.
May 03, 2007
10 / 10
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Edward
Great course and a beautiful CH. If you have the chance play the par 3 course in the morning, as it is just as good as the one at Augusta. The finishing holes and the par 3s are very challenging and all the holes seem to be doglegs. Very tough golf course but a lot of fun. Being in San Fran the ball does not travel as far as it is quite foggy and smoggy. Immaculate course that is a challenge for the lower handicaps. Not surprising that only good players win the US Open here.
July 10, 2006
6 / 10
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Buzz
November 20, 2010
Foggy it is (summer), but smoggy? It would be a rare day. The prevailing winds come right off the Pacific.