Shuttle Meadow - Connecticut - USA

Shuttle Meadow Country Club,
51 Randecker Lane,
Connecticut (CT) 06037,

  • +1 860 229 6000

Shuttle Meadow Country Club is a private course with limited membership, as to assure that no tee times will be required. Those lucky enough to get on will find a Willie Park Jr. design, including his devious putting surfaces and imposing bunkers.

No. 18 certainly has the best-named of the bunch with the “Big Mouth,” a large cross bunker that will separate the good drives from the bad on this short par five. Those who are clean off the tee can carry in two and even consider eagle...those who miss the target will be forced to cede a shot to their opponent and lay up. A notable principle’s nose exists just short of the green at No. 14, however Park’s thunder is stolen by Bobby Jones, who played the course in days of yore and is now memorialized in the hole’s name: “Bobby’s Lure.”

The course claims its own “Amen Corner” in the wooded section of the property, although this trio comes in much shorter than its Augusta namesake. Still, these two short par fours offer punishment for those who bite off more than they can chew. And, as at Augusta, the most nerve-wracking of them might be the shortest: No. 6 asks for a “simple” a Park-style green fronted by a creek and surrounded by sand.

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Description: Formed in 1899, Shuttle Meadow Country Club engaged Willie Park Jr. to set out its course just before the end of the Great War. Nestled within a 400-acre property, the course retains many of its original design traits. Rating: 5.5 out of 10 Reviews: 2
M. James Ward

Shuttle Meadow is a quality layout with a number of holes on both sides worth enjoying.

The front is more expansive with the back nine being a bit tighter acreage wise. Some updating would be a good thing too. The par-4 12th has a center-placed bunker but a new placement positioned further down the fairway to provide some meaningful obstacle to stronger players.

As Doug correctly noted -- removing interfering trees, or at minimum cutting back the protruding canopies, would be a wise course of action.

There are three par-5 holes on the front making par 37 on the side. The 7th would play more challenging as a par-4 and bring the overall par for the layout to 70.

The 4th hole named "Meadow" is quite good. Players have to get into the proper position avoiding a creek to the left for an approach to the green protected in the front by the same creek encountered on the tee shot. The green is two-tiered and when at top speed is quick to snare golfers with three or more putts.

The closing hole on the front is also quite delicious. An uphill par-3 that is most vexing for club selection. Get too bold and the result can mean going over the green and then facing a green that provides no respite.

The par-3 15th is also a gem of a hole. At 230 yards and called "Razorback" -- the shot from the tee must have been daunting given the clubs and balls during the developmental days of golf in America. The rigors are still present in contemporary times. Players need to work the ball from right-to-left. And those who miss too far right and the pitch towards the green can be devilish with the green running away from that side.

The penultimate hole highlights the gift Park had with his designs. The hole bottlenecks with trees flanking both sides -- getting into the fairway is a big-time plus. The approach is uphill and pulling the proper club pays huge dividends. Coming up short can inflict mental anguish as a pesky false front will quickly say "hi" to one's golf ball.

The closing hole is a short par-5 but one must avoid the "big mouth" bunker cutting across the fairway and providing a clear nemesis for those unable to marry sufficient distance and uncanny accuracy. To add to the intrigue -- you also encounter a triple tier green.

The Northeast USA is littered with so many classical architectural gems and it's not hard for a number to be overlooked. Shuttle Meadow resides in the shadows for now, but with the potential to be more noted.

December 31, 2021
6 / 10
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Doug Roberts

Shuttle Meadow is a nice private course in the hillside outside New Britain. The course is one of those places that likes to remind you they are private. The course starts with a couple par 4's back and forth. Rolling terrain with much slope so the landing areas are quite small as all balls will be deflected to the low side. There are some nice holes. A couple very good par 3's. But after that a group of average holes that fade from your mind. A couple holes near the finish are very nice. 18 is a catch up par 5 which even light hitters may have a crack at in 2 if you catch the hill right on your drive. A good tree removal program would work well even given they have removed some already. Many more should go.

December 11, 2019
5 / 10
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