Numerous golf clubs have generated headlines by combining the design services of multiple PGA professionals to create a single route. Few, if any, have as decorated a trophy case as the pair who designed The Royal Club. Between Annika Sorenstam and Arnold Palmer, 17 Major victories-worth of experience are included here. The course would be Sorenstam’s first in the United Stated and, unfortunately, Palmer’s last prior to his passing during 2016 (Thad Layton contributed on behalf of Palmer Design).
The opening nine, “The Queen’s,” are obviously Sorenstam’s addition. This group works through the more deciduous half of the property, with tree-lined fairways and strategically placed bunkers to muddle the mind of the approacher.
Palmer received the more open eastern half of the property for the "King's Nine" and his holes take advantage of the scenic views along Horseshoe Lake. Although that body of water is the most attractive, the smaller creek at No. 15 may be the water of choice during the round, splitting opinion on whether you should gun for the green on this drivable par four.
Two distinctly different nines with the front being more wooded with strategic landing areas. The back being more open, windy, and favoring the longer hitter with opportunities to get to the easier approach shots to the green.
Conditions, employees, food, and pro shop are top notch. Definitely a delight to visit and play.
The Royal Club, the newest of Minneapolis-St. Paul's upscale public golf course facilities, was designed by Arnold Palmer--in one of his last--and Annika Sorenstam. Each of the two architects brought to life a nine-hole routing from the property that once held 3M's home course. The Royal Club is a pleasant walk because of its variety and affordability. To play a course of this caliber for under 100 dollars at any time is not like many parts of the country; Royal Club would in places demand twice as much. The first tee box, a downhill par four, presents the golfer with a few challenges that will be omnipresent throughout the rest of their round: elevation changes and water hazards. Along with the first, my favorites are the par four fourth and the finishing uphill par five 18th. The last is a postcard hole with tremendous views of the water left and the clubhouse straight ahead. It will soon be recognized as one of Minnesota's finest closers. My least favorite hole is the 15th, an oddly shaped downhill, right-to-left sloping drivable par four. Rumor has it that the houses off to the left of the hole are upset about the possibility of their homes being smacked by golf balls. It is a funky hole, though, and deserves a redesign. Green speeds are unpredictable at Royal Club, and some approaches are downright impossible to understand unless you've walked the routing a few times. The Royal Club is an intriguing design that no doubt benefits from the land in which it has been built. I expect the course to rise in upcoming editions of these rankings because of great conditioning and the two faces behind the scenes. Go check it out if you're in the east metro; it's worth a look at least once.
Redesign of Tarten/3M course - Arnold Palmer and Annika design - The King and Queen's Nice. Not super long tee to green - Greens are great and challenging. New course is great and keeps getting better