Pine Lakes Country Club, Myrtle Beach’s first golf course, reopened to public play on July 13 following a greens and bunker restoration project that transformed the venerable layout.
Founders Group International, Pine Lakes’ parent company, partnered with Craig Schreiner to lead the effort at the Granddaddy. At the heart of the work was the installation of new Sunday bermudagrass greens, providing Myrtle Beach’s oldest course with one of the game’s premier ultradwarf putting surfaces.
Sunday bermudagrass has proven to be a particularly hearty strain along the Grand Strand, guaranteeing smooth, fast greens that thrive in the area’s subtropical climate. The new grass is replacing the paspalum that was installed during a 2008-09 renovation.
The greens were also restored to their original size, adding more than 21,000 square feet of putting surface at Pine Lakes, an increase of 20 percent.
While the new greens attract much of the attention, Schreiner’s bunker work was no less dramatic. Every greenside bunker on the course was renovated, an effort that included the installation of a new state-of-the-art drainage system, and 25 of Pine Lakes’ 26 bunkers were reduced in size.
The new bunker faces feature traditional, native grasses that roll into the sand, giving the course a more natural look that provides an equally fair test for players of varying skill levels.
Pine Lakes closed on April 26 to begin the project.
“Pine Lakes is one of the Myrtle Beach area’s iconic layouts, and we are committed to ensuring it maintains not only it’s position of historical importance but also its reputation as a course golfers relish the opportunity to play,” said Founders Group International President Steve Mays. “We are delighted with the results of the greens and bunker restoration project and can’t wait to welcome golfers back to the Granddaddy.”
“Sunday bermudagrass is ideal for Myrtle Beach’s climate and golfers are going to love the new greens, which will provide a smoother, faster putting surface,” said Pine Lakes General Manager Jimmy Biggs. “Golfers playing Pine Lakes this fall will return to a course that is in spectacular condition and our staff couldn’t be more excited.”
Pine Lakes, which opened in 1927, was originally designed by Robert White, a native of St. Andrews, Scotland and the first president of the PGA of America, and the course, along with its famed clubhouse, is part of the National Registry of Historic Places.
Built along natural dunes less than a mile from the Atlantic Ocean, Pine Lakes Country Club features natural elevation change and a classic design that has long made it one of the Myrtle Beach area’s most popular courses.
The work at Pine Lakes is just the latest capital improvement project undertaken by FGI as the company has committed to reinvesting in its 21 courses, ensuring an unforgettable experience for vacationing golfers.
In the last three years, FGI has also completed significant course improvement projects at TPC Myrtle Beach, Aberdeen Country Club, the PineHills and Palmetto courses at Myrtlewood, and Tradition Club.