Apr 07, 2014 | 06:17 am

Birthday Presence

Fans of links golf likely are already familiar with Dooks Golf Links, situated on Dingle Bay in County Kerry in the southwest of Ireland. The classic course is celebrating its 125th birthday in 2014—making it one of the 10 oldest clubs in Ireland—by extending a welcome to golfers everywhere to enjoy what has been called one of the “loveliest little clubs in the world.” There’s a slate of events planned for the year and open to visitors, with details on the club’s website and its Facebook page (“Dooks Golf Club 125”). If you do visit, you might find yourself asking the same question being asked by locals: What will the club do with the 80 acres of dune land it recently purchased? Is another nine holes in its future? The next few years could be as exciting as the last 125.


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Apr 04, 2014 | 10:56 am

Sea Change

Sea Pines Resort on Hilton Head Island (LINKS’ home) and the PGA Tour’s Heritage put the Lowcountry of South Carolina on the golf map almost 50 years ago. In the last 10 to 20 years, however, more luxurious properties north and south—Kiawah and Sea Island, respectively—have stolen the limelight a bit. But with the recent opening of the $17 million Plantation Golf Club clubhouse that’s all starting to change. The 23,000-square-foot building is the staging area for golfers playing Heron Point by Pete Dye and the Ocean Course, the first one built on the island, well as the new learning center headed up by one of the country’s best young teachers, Tim Cooke. The Buzz attended the grand opening last night and was very impressed with the new facilities. The architecture and interior design couldn’t be more tasteful with private club-like locker rooms and an airy bar and grill, while the learning center is state-of-the-art with two indoor hitting bays and the latest in high-tech swing and putting analysis. Next door nearing completion is the $12 million Beach Club. The 25,000-square-foot structure will feature five dining options, including beach and rooftop bars. And on April 21st, the day after this year’s Heritage, a crew will demolish the Harbour Town Golf Links clubhouse to make way for a $20 million replacement. Your move Kiawah and Sea Island.

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Apr 03, 2014 | 01:30 am

Most Dramatic Masters Ever?

Which year gets your vote? A new book points to the 39th Annual Masters as a viable candidate. That’s when Johnny Miller posted a 65 and 66 in the last two rounds and came in second. Tom Weiskopf entered the final round with a one-stroke lead and shot a 70 to finish tied with Miller. And Jack Nicklaus bounced back from a third round 73 to close with a 68 to win his fifth Masters. The drama is captured in The Magnificent Masters: Jack Nicklaus, Johnny Miller and Tom Weiskopf and the 1975 Cliffhanger at Augusta by Gil Capps. Bolstering the book’s premise is veteran golf writer Dan Jenkins, who described that tournament for Sports Illustrated. “There was something about the 1975 Masters that was cinematic from the beginning. The setup was perfect, all of the world's best golfers coming into the thing primed, poised, inspired, eager. And sure enough, it began to unfold toward what promised to be a historic climax, one way or another. But no one could possibly have imagined that in the final hours, it would become so excruciatingly exciting and monumentally meaningful in terms of the characters involved.”

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Apr 02, 2014 | 06:13 am

Road To Mandalay

Add Myanmar—formerly known as Burma—as the latest Asian country to expose a golfing past. Once a British colony, there are already more than 50 courses, some more than 100 years old. And opening late next year will be Mandalay Myotha Golf Club (that's the par-five 3rd hole, above), located near Mandalay, a business hub as well as the last royal capital and center of Burmese culture. The course is the work of Schmidt-Curley Design, an American firm with many courses in Asia, and Kyi Hla Han, executive chairman of the Asian Tour and a former professional golfer. Built for world-class events—it's par 72 and will stretch to 8,000 yards—Mandalay Myotha “will take full advantage of the site’s dramatic terrain, with golf holes playing along deep river canyons and fairways routed through a vast rolling landscape,” explains Lee Schmidt. It’s one part of an 11,000-acre project that will include schools, hospitals, factories, warehouses, parks, and housing for a population of 250,000.

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