Top New York State Golf Courses
One measure of the quality of New York State’s golf courses is the fact that three of them are ranked in the top ten of Golf Digest’s 2013-2014 list of America’s greatest golf courses. Many of the state’s courses are works of architectural art that were built in the 20’s and 30’s, and have been an important part of our nation’s historic love affair with golf.
Shinnecock Hills Golf Club, in Southampton, was designed by William Flynn. This outstanding course has been in Golf Digest’s top 100 for 48 out of the 49 years that the ranking has existed. Shinnecock Hills also has the honor of being the earliest links in America, and its classic architecture hasn’t undergone many changes in the past 50 years. It was the first formal golf club in the United States, opening in 1892, and it was also the first to admit women. This club has hosted the U.S. Open four times, and will again play host to this tournament in 2018. In preparation for that event, the course will receive some minor upgrading. It includes 7,041 yards, is a Par 70, and has 68.90 points.
Winged Foot Golf Club (West) has been ranked in the top 100 courses for all of the ranking’s 49 years. It is number 8 this year. It was designed by architect A.W. Tillinghast, and the contours of its greens show some of his best work. These greens are designed in an unusual way, with steep slants and slopes that make them a real challenge. Host of the 2006 U.S. Open, Winged Foot will also host the 2020 U.S. Open. Membership in Winged Foot is by invitation only. This course is 7528 yards long, par 72, with 66.99 points.
Fisher’s Island Club is probably the finest work of designers Seth Raynor and Charles Banks, and it was opened in 1926. It has geometrically shaped greens and bunkers with steep banks, and it offers gorgeous panoramas of Long Island Sound and the Atlantic. Fisher’s Island is a secluded, luxury getaway in Long Island Sound. A private golf, tennis and beach club, Fisher’s Island offers beautiful residences, fine dining, and five tennis courts. While the golf course is ranked 10th in the America’s greatest list, it gets a number 2 ranking on Golf Digest’s list of the Most Fun Private Courses. The course, par 72, is 6566 yards long and has 66.73 points.
Quaker Ridge Golf Club in Scarsdale, built in 1915, has been revised only slightly since 1925, and its design has stood the test of time. The area is rich in the history of the American Revolution, and the course itself is frequently named as one of the very best in Westchester County. Designed by A.W. Tillinghast in 1918, and sometimes referred to as a “Tillie’s treasure,” this course is 6976 yards long. It is a par 70, with 61.53 points. The annual William Rice Hochster Memorial Tournament, honoring the founder of this golf club, is held here each year in June.
Hudson National Golf Course has a dramatic location perched on bluffs far above the Hudson River Valley. The average elevation of the course is 450 feet, and the river can be seen from 14 of the 18 holes. Designed in 1996 by Tom Fazio, Hudson National has 7122 yards, is par 70, and has 61.05 points. The clubhouse at Hudson National was once a vintage mansion, and it’s been completely refurbished to maintain its architectural character while providing a venue for fine dining and lingering with friends. The overall site consists of 260 acres, including luxurious “cottages” with all the amenities as well as views of the river.