The Palmetto Courses is one of six championship layouts at The Landings, and is generally accepted by the membership and staff to be the most difficult. The Arthur Hills design, which opened in 1985 (the club was founded in 1974), challenges players with demanding tee shots, deep bunkering and elevated greens, which are designed with a variety of contours.
This will be the club’s first USGA championship, but the Palmetto Course previously hosted U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur sectional qualifying the past five years. It also hosted the Georgia State Golf Association’s Junior Championship in 2006.
As part of the course’s renovation in 2005, new tees were constructed, cart paths were converted to concrete, bunker sand was replaced, a new irrigation system installed and retaining walls were replaced.
Located 12 miles south of Savannah on a 6,500-acre barrier island, The Landings features nature preserves, 151 lagoons, all stocked with bass and the home to more than 100 species of birds. During high tide, it’s also not uncommon to see sea trout, tarpon and other saltwater fish.
The island’s largest oak tree (more than 10 feet in diameter) stands near the 10th green of the Palmetto Course. The closing three holes could play a role in determining the championship, with a large lagoon wrapping around the 18th green. The 13th hole features the burial site of Revolutionary War commander Phillip Delegal, one of the island’s original inhabitants.
Even though The Landings offers six 18-hole courses, and features Golf magazine Top 100 instructor J.D. Turner (instructor Nicole Weller has also been featured in Golf Digest), the island also has two full-service marinas, where boaters have easy access to the Atlantic Ocean and Intracoastal Waterway, as well as three tennis centers, including a 300-seet court that hosted a USGA Challenge event last May. The club also recently renovated and expanded its 36,000 square feet fitness center, a $5.3 million project that included new equipment, classes, training and pools.