Tag Archives: Pete Dye

PGA Golf Club at PGA Village Verano

With the perfect address for a golf club, PGA Golf Club, at 1916 Perfect Drive in Port St Lucie, is a golfer’s dream destination. Play three championship 18-hole golf courses, The Wanamaker, The Ryder and the Pete Dye, all owned and operated by The PGA of America.  And stay like a resident in a beautiful home on property at PGA Village Verano, minutes from the three golf courses in a resort-style golf community with a Stay & Play package.

Kolter Homes PGA Village Verano
Kolter Homes PGA Village Verano photo credit: Kolter Homes

The Wanamaker Course is one of two Tom Fazio designs on the property and does its namesake – PGA founder Rodman Wanamaker proud. Fazio designed both the Wanamaker and Ryder in 1999, but the twins are definitely fraternal and reveal different personalities.

Hole 18 on the Wanamaker Course PGA Village
Hole 18 on the Wanamaker Course PGA Village photo credit: John Cameron

Department store magnate Rodman Wanamaker helped establish the PGA of America, funded the first PGA Championship in 1916 and has his name attached to the champion’s prized trophy, The Wanamaker. Fazio’s Ryder Course honors Samuel Ryder, the namesake and founder of the Ryder Cup matches, which began in 1927. All 36 tees have plaques that unveil the storied lore of both the PGA Championship and the Ryder Cup.

On the Ryder Course, Fazio transports you to North Carolina, with his holes winding among majestic pines, rolling hills and elevation changes, and recurrent red-staked hazards.

 

Pete Dye Course PGA Village
Pete Dye Course PGA Village photo credit: Sherel Purcell

Pete Dye’s eponymous course at PGA Village opened for play in 2007. Highlighting the native environment, especially the wetlands, Dye fashioned a links-style course reminiscent of the British Isles, like playing in Scotland or Ireland without the airfare.

The three courses have their own driving range and putting and chipping areas as well as the “Short Course,” six holes between 35-60 yards where you can work on your finesse shots. However, the nearby 35-acre PGA Center for Golf Learning and Performance is a golf instruction, practice, technology and fitness park all in one. Named a “2013 Golf Range Association of America Top 50 Range,” the center includes more than 100 hitting stations (many weather-protected), short-game practice areas, putting greens, three practice holes and nine separate bunkers that simulate play worldwide.

Grab lunch at the Taplow Pub in the clubhouse – the street tacos are delicious.  After your round, enjoy a drink and dinner with PGA members at the 19th hole and watch golfers approach the 18th green on the Wanamaker course.

Museum at PGA Village Golf Club
Museum at PGA Village Golf Club photo credit: John Cameron

While not a comprehensive museum on the history of golf ( for that check out the excellent World Golf Hall of Fame in St. Augustine) PGA Village does have  the on-site PGA Museum of Golf. There’s plenty here to impress the golf fan if you love the game. Open to the public, it traces the history of the PGA of America through its major championship and the Ryder Cup. Check out the Wanamaker trophy. Golf fans can see more great golf memorabilia at Sam Snead’s Grill & Tavern at the nearby Holiday Garden Inn.

Kolter Homes PGA Village Verano
Kolter Homes PGA Village Verano photo credit: Kolter Homes

During a Kolter Homes Stay & Play, visitors have access to award-winning golf on the Ryder and Pete Dye courses in addition to the Wanamaker course. 

Pool at Club Talavera
Pool at Club Talavera photo credit: Sherel Purcell

A-three day, two-night stay includes access to the new 27,000 square ft. Club Talavera Social Center with full use of all amenities including the13,000 square ft. Fitness Center, with yoga, tennis, indoor/outdoor pools, bocce ball, basketball, Har-Tru tennis courts and one round of golf for two at the adjacent PGA Golf Club.

PGA Golf Club is just off I-95 at Exit 121, 45 minutes north of Palm Beach and a two-hour drive from both Orlando and Miami.

 

 

The Players Championship

When The Players Championship first moved to Ponte Vedra in 1982, Pete Dye’s Stadium course wasn’t an instant hit with the players. When then asked if  TPC Sawgrass suited his playing style, Jack Nicklaus quipped,

“No, I’ve never been very good at stopping a 5-iron on the hood of a car.”

Dye returned to tweak the course, softening the rock hard and lightning fast greens and replacing several bunkers. After the changes, TPC Sawgrass became far more playable.

Every year, the best golfers in the world return to Ponte Vedra Beach for The Players Championship, now considered the unofficial 5th major by golf writers and players alike.

Memorable moments from The Players include Rickie Fowler’s three birdies on 17 for his first Players win in 2015, Hal Sutton’s “Be the right club today” 6 iron into the eighteenth for a 1 shot win over Tiger Woods in 2000 and Tiger Woods “Better than most” 60-foot putt on the island green at 17 for his first Players title in 2001.

If you’re hungry, stop by Nineteen in the clubhouse for lunch.  And don’t miss seeing the Champions clubs. Every year since the inaugural Players Championship in 1974, the TPC Champion has donated a  club from their winning bag to a collection on permanent display in the TPC clubhouse.

Where to Stay

If you want to watch the PGA Tour tee it up at The Players, stay where the pros do, at the updated Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa.  

Lobby of Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa
Lobby of Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa

The lobby provides a beautiful and expansive golf course vista with indoor /outdoor bar seating. You can even see the 13th tee box of the TPC Stadium course from the hotel.

Mini 17th island green at Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa
Mini 17th island green at Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa

Sawgrass Marriott has created a mini-replica of the 17th hole at the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass for guests to test their game. While only 65 yards away, if you can land a ball on this postage size green, you belong on the PGA tour.

Open for both breakfast and dinner, the Marriott’s signature restaurant, Vernon’s specializes in innovative dishes with a local flair. The many breakfast buffet options include a custom omelette station.

There’s also an onsite spa and a private beach club to relax on Florida’s Northeast sandy coast. The restaurant 619 Ocean View at the beach club is a short shuttle away from the hotel. The hotel also offers guests a complimentary shuttle to the TPC Valley and Stadium course. If you like, you can have your clubs sent over from the hotel.

Starting in 2019, THE PLAYERS Championship is moving from its current month of May back to March, its previous position on the calendar as part of the Florida Swing. The TOUR’s signature event at TPC Sawgrass had been held in March until 2007 when it moved to May.

If golfing TPC Sawgrass is on your bucket list, please note the course is closed for prep one month prior to the tournament.

THE PLAYERS Championship
March 12 – 17, 2019
TPC Sawgrass, 110 Championship Way, Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida

The Players Clubhouse front room

TPC Sawgrass Champions framed watercolors

The Players locker room at TPC Sawgrass

Jack Nicklaus, Lee Trevino photos at TPC Sawgrass

The Champions Clubs at TPC Sawgrass

TPC Champion's clubs

The Player's Trophy