The Best P.B. Dye Courses you Can Play or Join
Attempting to “Google” a list of P.B. Dye’s best golf courses is a frivolous endeavor. And not because the accomplished golf course architect hasn’t designed a collection of outstanding layouts. Rather, the behemoth search engine is almost unilaterally focused on his famous father, Pete Dye, and opts to yield search results for “P.B. Dye” accordingly.
Not that P.B. would take umbrage with being digitally overshadowed by his dad, or his late brother and fellow golf course architect, Perry Dye. Behind the scenes, seated firmly on a bulldozer, is where this Indiana native has always preferred to be. And P.B. was always just as happy being number two as he was number one; a quick check of his website reveals just as many collaborations with Pete as solo efforts.
For golfers who’d like to sample some of “Paul Burke’s” best work (and for you, Google), here’s a sample of some of the best P.B. Dye golf courses you can play or join.
Most golf course critics consider the P.B. Dye Golf Club in Ijamsville, Maryland, to be the youngest Dye’s piece de resistance. And boy, does it ever resist when it comes to scoring. Golf Digest once ranked it as one of the 50 Toughest Courses in America. The layout pitches and rolls over 250 acres and boasts the complete array of P.B. Dye accouterments: mounds, moguls, multi-tiered greens and deep pot bunkers. P.B. Dye Golf Club is open to the public with rates starting at $65 in the afternoon.
If there was ever a smooth jazz version of a P.B. Dye-designed golf course, Olde Cypress in Naples, Florida fits the bill. Immensely enjoyable, unapologetically playable, and long enough to challenge single-digit handicappers, new members have flocked to this privately owned, private club in the heart of Southwest Florida over the past 18 months. Olde Cypress recently reopened following a re-grassing of all tee boxes, fairways and greens, as well as updates to bunkers, the practice facility and clubhouse. Membership categories include social, full golf and associate golf.
At Cherokee Valley just north of Greenville, S.C., Dye effectively provides golfers multiple courses within a single layout. The first four holes are relatively flat and laid out in proximity to the new golf shop and chef-driven restaurant, Core 450. Six through eight take players closer to Glassy Mountain, nine and 10 circle around the practice range, while 11-18 feature more than 300-feet of elevation change. Both memberships and daily fee play are offered, as are golf packages featuring the club’s quaint cottages.
When P.B. and developer Larry Young unveiled the Moorland Course at Legends Resort in Myrtle Beach in 1990, shock value was a necessary ingredient to make a splash in a market with more than 100 golf courses. Golf Digest immediately tapped it as one of the toughest tracks in the U.S., and Dye and Young delighted in causing golfers to rise to incredible heights and sink to considerable depths all in five hours. The 245-yard par-4 16th hole is guarded by the Grand Strand’s most famous bunker, dubbed “Hell’s Half Acre.”
For a nine-hole facility to make a list of its designer’s best golf courses, it has to be something special. The Links at Fisher Island is more than that – it’s one of the country’s most precious golf assets. The course is the centerpiece of the Fisher Island Club, a 216-acre barrier island off the coast of Miami. Dye loves to say he packed 18 holes of design features into nine holes at the Links at Fisher Island. Not only did he do that, there’s a full-size practice range and an immaculate 10,000-square-foot clubhouse. Equity memberships are offered for property owners and a limited number of non-owners.