South Carolina is chock full of golf courses and private golf communities; some with large, opulent homes, others with multiple golf courses. But there is nothing quite like Woodside Plantation. Sure they have fabulous homesites; in fact there are plenty of homesites for new construction or you can find something for sale that is move-in ready, all in peaceful, private settings. But what makes Woodside Plantation different is that there are two private golf clubs within the guarded gates; Woodside Plantation Country Club and The Reserve Club at Woodside Plantation. Two totally separate private clubs, managed by two totally different management companies, yet located within the same gated community.
Woodside Plantation Country Club is a private country club with membership available to anyone inside or outside the gates. Pay an initiation fee, your monthly dues and you’re a member. The Reserve Club at Woodside Plantation is a little more restrictive. It’s a “mandatory membership” community meaning the only way you can become a member is to buy a home or homesite. The Reserve Club currently offers golfer 27 holes; the 18-hole championship Reserve Course – a Nicklaus design – and the 9-hole Hollow Creek Course, designed by Fuzzy Zoeller and Clyde Johnson. And, while many golf courses and private clubs are calling it quits and selling out to real estate developers, The Reserve Club is adding another nine holes that are due to be completed later this year. The Reserve Club opened in 2002 and has become a wonderful addition to the Woodside community, providing members world-class amenities right in their own backyard.
The Reserve Course is a fun and challenging Steve Nicklaus Design. Shortly after the course was completed in 2003, Golf Digest named the Reserve Course one of the “Top Ten Best New Private Courses in America.” Sixteen years later, The Reserve Course is continually recognized as one of South Carolina’s top private courses. The course can play as long as 6,995 yards from the back tees, all the way down to 5,005 yards from the forward tees. As you traverse the layout, you’ll find plush fairways, picturesque vistas and a lot of rolling terrain. The members seem to play at a very leisurely pace, yet we were done in about 4 hours!
The course is full of memorable holes but for my money, the 4th hole takes top prize. It’s a slight dogleg right that plays 386 yards from the White tees and requires an accurate tee shot down the mid-right side of the fairway. This can be a daunting task with the fairway sloping from right to left. As if that wasn’t tough enough, your approach shot will be a mid to long iron into a green fronted by a lake and surrounded by sand. Take enough club, put the ball in the middle of the green and two putt for par. Piece of cake, right?
The second layout at The Reserve Club is the Hollow Creek Course, designed by U.S. Open champion Fuzzy Zoeller and architect Clyde Johnston, best known for playable courses with a premium on aesthetics and captivating shot values. The original 10 holes were built in 2007, with plans to add the remaining 8 within a couple of years, however the recession that hit in 2008 altered these plans. Two more holes were added in 2017 and now the final piece of the puzzle is due to be completed before the end of 2019, with a few tweaks to several existing holes.
The six new holes will flow around the Hollow Creek Land Preservation, a 110-acre natural woodland and wetland area. This will provide a safe haven to indigenous wildlife and keep the aesthetics intact. The 9-hole layout that is currently in use plays through the rolling hills of Woodside Plantation and showcases some of the area’s best nature preserves. Each hole has been carved from the existing landscape providing golfers with some great views as they make their way around the meticulously maintained track. When completed, I think Hollow Creek will become every bit as popular as its sister course.
If finetuning your game is important to you, the Reserve Club has one of the most comprehensive practice facilities in the area. Members have the opportunity to work on all aspects of their game, whether it be a full swing on the driving range, dialing in pitch shots and distances at the short game area or perfecting their putting stroke on one of two practice putting greens. The professional staff is there to help if you can’t figure it out on your own.
The Golf Shop at The Reserve Club offers members everything from apparel by several of the industry’s top manufacturers to shoes, hats and just about any other golf accessory you can think of. If you need to get a new set of clubs, the trained PGA professional staff can help you get the right set to fit your game, so that you’ll get the most enjoyment out of them.
If racquet sports are more your thing, The Reserve Club has 6 lighted Har Tru fast dry tennis courts. Serious players can compete in inter-club leagues, clinics and club tournaments. Pickleball is a large part of the social fabric of the club, with three designated courts lit for night play and over 60 active players. There’s also a PTR certified Tennis Director on staff and the pro shop offers services such as racquet restringing and regripping. The Reserve Club bases several social events around tennis and pickleball; members share food and beverages as well as a good time while enjoying the company of friends.
The clubhouse at the Reserve Club is the centerpiece of the community and there is always plenty going on. As a member, there are plenty of activities to choose from; sip a cocktail on the covered veranda looking out onto the manicured landscaping, play in a weekly bocce ball game, play bridge or mah jongg, or enjoy some arts and crafts. The club also hosts trivia nights, wine tastings, cook-offs and many other events. With so much to do you’ll never be bored!
When it comes to dining, it’s tough to beat what the Reserve Club offers. Start or end your evening in the piano bar, enjoying a cocktail and the company of friends, before being seated on the outdoor covered veranda. If you’re looking for an upscale dining experience, try L’Attitudes. They offer Southern Living-inspired dishes, an expansive wine list and an exhibition kitchen that provides great entertainment. If laidback is more your style, chill with fellow members in the casual dining room while indulging in Chef’s culinary delights or enjoy a drink while watching a game in the sports lounge.
Take a quick glance around the grounds of The Reserve Club and you’ll realize it’s the perfect place for a wedding! The staff is eager to help plan your special day including room bookings, menu selections, floor plan creations, and more. The culinary staff can put together any menu your heart desires.
Masters Week is a special week for any golf club near Augusta, GA, public or private. A great Masters week can mean a successful year! The Reserve Club is no different; their Masters Week is considered one of the best in the area. The Club Package includes a round of golf with cart and greens fees on the package date(s) and access to the practice area on the day of play for $240. The VIP Package includes golf with cart and greens fees on package date(s) and access to the VIP Suite where you can enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner, complimentary bar and cigar service and big screen TV coverage of the Masters. You’ll also have all day access to The Reserve Club’s practice facilities. The VIP package is $425 per day and is very popular. For more information on becoming a member of The Reserve Club or being a part of their Masters Week celebration, visit their website at www.thereserveclubatwoodside.com.