Hammock Bay Golf Club in Marco Island… paradise just 90 minutes away from Miami!
Hammock Bay Golf Club is a resort-private golf course located in the paradisiac island of Marco, just 90 minutes away (car) from west Ft. Lauderdale. Hammock Bay was designed by Peter Jacobsen and is now owned and operated by the Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort (which also owns The Rookery Golf Course at Marco). Hammock Bay Golf Club is a paspalum turf masterpiece that measures just under 7,000 yards (6,912 yards, par-72) from the tips but it will definitely require the use of every golf club in your bag.
According to General Manager Chris Major, PGA the Hammock Bay Golf Club is a desert target-style layout that includes landscape that takes its inspiration from the nearby mangroves. I must say its a beautiful links style facility where your journey starts at hole #1 and you will not return to the clubhouse until hole #18. Although is considered by many a target style golf course I found most of the fairways were wide enough for the use of 3-woods and Drivers. The entire facility is surrounded by native trees and flowers and waste areas are filled with coquina crushed shells and white sands.
My comments to my playing partner Paulo Machado, Senior Sales Executive at Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort were that from time to time I felt like I was playing somewhere in the Caribbean, some holes resembled world famous Corales Golf Course in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic and some holes resembled Trump International Rio Grande in Puerto Rico. The rich green paspalum turf grass provides an excellent year-round surface for superior playability.
Key Playing Holes
Hole #4 (Par-4 445 yards) A long par-4 facing east with trouble left and right off the tee box. The tight tee box area is somewhat deceiving as later I found the fairway wide enough for a driver but not knowing the golf course forced me to tee off with my fairway wood, my second shot (200+ yards) fell short to the green and I left myself a long par putt which I missed. This is a hole that requires 2 good shots and the easterly wind will make it more difficult… a par would be a great score here!
One of the unique features about this golf course is what I call “disconnection from land”. Holes #7 thru #15 are away from the clubhouse and in the middle of nowhere… The term “lost in Paradise” will perfectly suit this area, just mangroves, white sands, wild life and green paspalum fairways. There are 3 tall buildings that you have to drive by before you get to the clubhouse, those buildings will become your bearing, your only way to figure out wind direction (which today was east to west) but never wind speed.
Hole #11 (Par-3 170 yards) A picturesque Par-3 from an elevated tee box to an elevated green… gorgeous views of holes #8 and #13… a very distracting hole! The green is very large and receptive, wind direction today was left to right. I was able to place my shot within 5 feet but somehow manage to miss my birdie putt!! No excuses!!
Hole #16 (Par-5 545 yards) A straight and wind aided Par-5 measuring almost 550 yards but playing more like 500 yards. The wide and generous fairway made me squeeze some extra yards out of my driver; my second shot was a 4-iron to the entrance of the green (219 yards)… 2 putts later and I just birdied my third hole in this gorgeous golf course.
Hammock Bay Golf Club is a beautiful golf course just minutes away from South East Florida. The facility is set amidst the surrounding beauty of McIvane Bay and the Ten Thousand Islands. It is located on the pristine track of land that was known for years as Marco Shores Golf Club. Former PGA Tour player Peter Jacobsen completely renovated the track and made it into a new and unique golf experience. The course is nestled among the bay, marshes, mangroves and sand bunkers… A must play golf course if you stay at the Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort.
- Courteous and friendly staff
- Great Clubhouse, pro shop and restaurants
- Great facility to host golf tournaments
- Golf course in immaculate conditions
- The golf course received 72″ inches of rain during the summer… a couple of fairways we had to play lift, clean and place.
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