Fewer than 400 homes are located within the gates of the 500 acre Renaissance community in Fort Myers, FL. The community also features The Club at Renaissance, an 18-hole regulation course. From the back tees the course is long, playing 7,046 yards for a par of 72. The course rating is 74.9 with a slope rating of 145. The course was designed by Arthur Hills, a name that has become nationally-renowned in the world of golf. Currently, there are more than 150 Arthur Hills designed courses in the United States alone. His firm designs courses that are playable, yet challenging, while creating a sense of environmental sensitivity.
As you step up to the first tee, you will notice wide, receptive fairways. For the most part you will find this throughout your round at “The Club” although bold and daring play will be rewarded. Feel free to shoot for the flags and experience the exhilaration of successful shot execution. Although the overall difficulty level of this course is very high, it will challenge golfers of all abilities.
Amenities at Renaissance are outstanding. In addition to golf there are on-site PGA Golf Professionals, a well-stocked pro shop and a practice area that includes an aqua range, short game and bunker area and a massive putting green.
Number 1 Par 4, 394 yards. This medium length par 4 dogleg left offers a large landing area off the tee however if you hit it left, your ball will most likely meet a watery demise. Avoid the fairway bunker on right off the tee and you will have an approach shot of about 150 yards to a large green guarded on the right side by two bunkers and water on the left. Par is more than achievable to get your round off on the right foot.
Number 4: Par 3, 224 yards. Standing on the tee, you don’t realize what a pretty golf hole this is; all you are thinking about is getting over the water on the right and keeping the ball out of the trees on the left. You will notice once you are on the green the large crown in the middle that can make putting an interesting chore.
Number 9: Par 5, 530 yards. Your best bet on this pretty par 5 is to play down the left side, over the two fairway bunkers. If there is any question about getting over them, don’t mess around; they can make life miserable. On your layup shot, continue down the left side, keeping the water out of play. Your approach shot is to a narrow, deep green. Mounding on this hole can make things interesting, especially if you incur the dreaded uneven lie.
Number 10: Par 4, 425 yards. A fairly long carry over water off the tee makes this hole a lot more interesting. Anything too far left off the tee and the mounding will block out the majority of the green, leaving a blind approach shot. Woods short and right off the tee can come into play if you are too far right off the tee.
Number 12: Par 3, 197 yards. Anything short is likely to find sand; or leave a lie that will make you wish you found the sand. Your best line off the tee is over the left side of the lake. Should you decide to bail out left you are flirting with disaster. Your chip shot will be onto a green that runs away from you towards the water; making up and down that much tougher.
Number 18: Par 4, 403 yards. Your best line off the tee is to the left center of the fairway but not too far long and left as a complex of fairway bunkers can come into play. A slight hook off the tee may result in your ball getting wet. Anything right off the tee will force you to carry some wetlands on your approach. The fairway is split with a lot of mounding and bunkers between. This long narrow green is elevated and guarded by bunkers all around. This is a very picturesque finishing hole.
Last Word: Renaissance is another Arthur Hills masterpiece. From the attendant that takes your golf bag out of your cart when you pull into the bag drop area, to the pro shop staff, on course rangers and maintenance staff, everything is first rate. And I haven’t even mentioned the course yet!
Renaissance is one of the nicest courses in the Ft. Myers area and a definite must play if you can find a member to take you with him/her! There had to be a lot of dirt moved in to create the mounding that you find on just about every hole. There is a lot of water but not too much. The greens are always in top shape and are quite puttable for golfers of all abilities. The practice amenities are first class; you can practice with every club in your bag to your heart’s content.