|Pete Dye took full advantage of a rolling Brooksville landscape when he routed the fairways of the Southern Hills Plantation course within a large, upmarket residential development.|
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Av. Reviewers Score:
This is one of the best and most beautiful courses in the Tampa area open to the public. Last year the course served as qualifier for the PGA Tour School. The course is situated in rolling landscape which literally gives it a third dimension and sets it apart from the flat pancake courses found elsewhere in Florida. A place in the top 100 is well deserved but should be ranked higher in my opinion. A course that strangely enough is missing entirely in the list, is Belleair Country Club in Clearwater. How is that possible? It's not only one of the oldest clubs in Florida, but they have two of the finest Donald Ross courses imaginable.
5 / 6Southern Hills Plantation
March 27, 2014
Both courses at Belleair Country Club made our Florida Top 100 shortlist. Unfortunately little of Donald Ross’s original work at Belleair remains, with holes re-routed and bunkers long since gone or changed. Belleair’s West course is a more likely candidate for future inclusion, but there are currently many other Florida courses rated higher in the pecking order that didn't make the hundred.
April 04, 2014
Much depends on the evaluation criteria used when writing a review. These days overwhelming courses like Streamsong, with MacKenzie style bunkering and massive waste areas, set the trend. I have to agree that this 'shock-and-awe' architecture can be attractive and nice to play. But in the end I prefer the classic courses build at the beginning of the last century. They are more subtle, less intimidating and in most cases nicer to play for amateurs. I like to finish the 18th hole with the feeling that I have played a pleasant round of golf, instead of having accomplished a tough, and sometimes frustrating journey. Belleair is a classic example of a high end course from the 1920s. The Donald Ross signature is seen everywhere and Gene Bates, the architect who renovated the courses, did, at least I'm my view, a fantastic job.