Sahalee (South & North) - Washington - USA

Sahalee Country Club,
21200 NE Sahalee Country Club Drive,
Washington (WA) 98074,

  • +1 (0) 425 868 8800

  • Golf Club Website

  • 5 miles SE of Redmond on E edge of Lake Sammamish

  • Members and their guests only

  • Steve Boggs

  • Ted Robinson and Rees Jones

  • Mike Montgomery

Sahalee Country Club played host to the 1998 PGA Championship and the 2002 World Golf Championship so it goes without saying that Sahalee is championship calibre.

Sahalee is set on the Sammamish Plateau to the southeast of Redmond and is the result of a meeting of minds between members of Inglewood Country Club and Broadmoor Golf Club who decided Greater Seattle should have another championship course. Ted Robinson was the chosen architect and the championship-ready course was opened for play in the late 1960s. After much debate, the name Sahalee was chosen which means "High Heavenly Ground" in the tongue of the Chinook Indians.

Rees Jones redesigned the North and South loops in 1996 and these 18 holes are used when Sahalee is presented in its championship livery. The 17th hole is set amongst the trees and is surrounded by water. During the 1998 PGA event – the first major to be hosted in the Northwest since 1944 – Vijay Singh managed to rattle an 18 footer into the cup for a sandy par, which proved too much for playing partner Steve Stricker who could only manage a bogey. This gave Singh a two-shot cushion and was good enough to secure his first major title.

Sahalee was selected to host the 31st US Senior Open in 2010 and Bernhard Langer's four round score of 272 (8 under par) was good enough to win the title by three shots from runner-up Fred Couples.

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Description: Sahalee Country Club played host to the 1998 PGA Championship and the 2002 World Golf Championship so it goes without saying that Sahalee is championship calibre. Rating: 3.3 out of 6 Reviews: 3

Recently I had the nice experience of playing Sahalee with a friend who's a member there. He asked me to come and provide honest feedback about the course. It's a great private members club with superb facilities and indeed the history of having hosted a major as already mentioned here. I played on a perfectly sunny day and while the course may have been over seeded and overly lush it was really in otherwise perfect condition. Not a blade of grass out of line. My overall feeling is that the course is slightly overrated in terms of its US rankings. It has been completely overrun with trees and not small ones, these are huge trees with branches all the way down to the ground. On many holes the trees are so tight that on your first play it's tough to have any idea where you are playing. Since there are houses surrounding the course I had to wonder if it would be realistic to go in there and remove a couple thousand (at least) trees and create some more light and air to firm up the turf and increase the size of the playing corridors. I'm not sure what that would do to the overall aesthetic feeling of the course or if it would be possible without making it simply another golf course built into a housing development.

I doubt seriously I will ever have the answer. It's a fun day of golf and the courses are really nice I just believe they could be so much better. We played 27 and while it was a great day, I wouldn't return to play again if my friend weren't a member.
3 / 6
Sahalee (South & North)
November 04, 2014

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Sahalee, located in a suburb of Seattle, Washington, was designed by Ted Robinson, his only entry on the Top 100. Caved out of the tall cedar and Douglas fir trees that are native to the Northwest, Sahalee (which means “high heavenly ground”) opened in 1969. In 1998, the course hosted the PGA Championship.

I invited my friend Larry, who lives in Seattle, to play the South and North nines, which are the courses rated for the Top 100. As we crossed Lake Washington, we could see the home of Bill Gates being built on the shore. Massive is the word that comes to mind. It was a typical wet northwestern day, and even when it wasn’t sprinkling, the course was soaked and produced no roll. It was an uneventful day, except for the fact that Sahalee was my 50th course. Next course I’d be on the back 50. Larry Berle.
2 / 6
Sahalee (South & North)
November 03, 2014

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Keith Baxter
November 03, 2014
The above review is an edited extract from A Golfer’s Dream, which has been reproduced with the author’s kind permission. A Golfer’s Dream, by Larry Berle, tells the story of how a regular guy conquered America’s Top 100 Golf Courses (following Golf Digest’s 2001/2002 list). Larry has exclusively rated for us every course in the hundred, using our golf ball rating system. However, Larry did not rate the 100 courses against every golf course he has played, but instead he rated them in relation to each other within the hundred. Consequently, in some cases, his rating may seem rather low. A Golfer’s Dream is available in Kindle format and also on Kindle Unlimited via Amazon... click the link for more. 
I live about 2 miles from Sahalee. I have played there once as a guest and I walked the course 3 times as a walking scorer recently at the 2010 US Senior Open - including a memorable 18 with Tom Watson and Freddie Couples that I will tell my grandchildren about.Sahalee makes both the Top 100 in America and the "Most Overrated' list too. I would agree on both counts. Why? The course is asthetically beautiful in a parkland setting and is always in spectacular shape. The issue is there are just not a lot of memorable holes - they blend together. And the tight fairways are lined with huge pine trees, so it takes driver out of your hand.Would I play Sahalee again? Of course.
5 / 6
Sahalee (South & North)
October 31, 2010

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