Gullah-Golf-Links Plantation Course Partners
We believe that our plantation partner courses with slave cemeteries creates an unmatched spiritual cultural heritage spiritual ambience and presence such as Caledonia Golf & Fish Club, a former rice plantation located in Pawleys Island, South Carolina
PLATATION GOLF PARTNERS
True Blue Golf Club, Mike Strantz’s fourth signature golf course, opened to rave reviews in February 1998. Strantz also designed the award-winning Caledonia Golf & Fish Club, which opened in 1994, on plantation land adjacent to True Blue. For his efforts at True Blue and Caledonia, Strantz was named “Architect of the Year” by Golf World in 1998. Strantz crafted True Blue to echo many of the characteristics of Pine Valley and Pinehurst #2, with an emphasis on maintaining a natural feel to the course.
The par-72 course can stretch to 7,126 and sits on the site of historic True Blue Plantation, a famed 19th-century indigo, and rice plantation. Emphasizing the natural beauty of the area, it incorporates native grasses and vegetation to maintain much of the character of the property. The course also boasts an 18-acre practice facility, home of The Steve Dresser
Since opening to the public in January 1994, Caledonia Golf and Fish Club has rapidly gained a reputation as one of the premier courses in America. It is the first solo design of late, great golf course architect Mike Strantz. Strantz approached his assignments in a unique way—as an artist, rather than an engineer. His exceptionally creative eye is reflected in the way he sculpted Caledonia’s 18 holes, with large, creative greens guarded at times by ponds, streams and imposing bunkers. The same sort of majestic live oaks that overhang the entryway into Caledonia similarly frames many of the shots at Caledonia, giving the course a rustic feel. Thousands of annual and semiannual flowers bloom every year throughout the property, further adding to the beauty of the experience. No houses encumber the interior of the property—the joy of playing golf is left alone by the worry of hitting a ball into someone’s backyard.
Caledonia Golf & Fish Club’s site can be traced back to Dr. Robert Nesbit, a Scotsman who bestowed upon it the name the Romans gave his homeland: “Caledonia.” It is not known whether Dr. Nesbit acquired the property through his marriage in 1797 to Elizabeth Pawley or by purchase. The Pawley family owned a significant amount of property in the area and their name survives today- the surrounding area is now the town of Pawleys Island, South Carolina. Land records from Georgetown County indicate that Caledonia was, at one time, one of the largest plantations in the area with property stretching from the Atlantic Ocean to the rice fields on the western edge of the Waccamaw River. Perhaps the most striking aesthetic feature of the plantation is the impressive avenue of live oaks leading to the clubhouse steps. These 150-year old trees, laden with Spanish moss, led to old King’s Highway as it made its way along the coast in the 1700s. Agricultural records indicate that, at its peak in the mid-1800s, Caledonia’s annual production of rice was more than 700,000 pounds. This production was above average compared to other area plantations. The Civil War’s effect on agricultural production was understandably profound.
The original plantation house burned to the ground in 1931. Dr. Nesbit’s descendants continued to own and operate Caledonia until 1940. After the Nesbits relinquished ownership of the property, parcels were systematically sold off for development to the point where the once-substantial landholding was whittled to 152 acres from its original size of 2,542 acres. The current owners purchased the property in 1971 to use primarily as a hunting and fishing preserve. Each member had his own small lodge on the property and would often come to fish in the river and hunt ducks in the rice fields. Every Thursday the group would meet at Caledonia to cook dinner and socialize. They still gather there often—the shed remains on the property in its original form, with some cosmetic upgrades over the years. It is this fellowship and tradition that inspired the design and construction of the golf course.
As sportsmen, the owners aimed to build a course that preserved as much of the land’s natural beauty as possible. As southerners, they wanted to create an atmosphere of warmth and hospitality that each golfer would remember fondly. The goal of Caledonia remains that each visitor look back on his or her day not just as a round of golf, but as an overall Lowcountry experience.
The Pearl features 27 holes designed by Dan Maples set amongst the woods and marshes along the Calabash River. Maples used the natural beauty of the property to frame The Pearl Golf Course and the 27 holes create three distinctly different 18 hole golf experiences, The Pearl East, The Pearl West, and The Pearl North. While Playing The North Course the golfer will get the feel of a more links style golf course, with wider fairways and larger greens. The Pearl East emphasizes a more parkland style course, which emphasizes accuracy over power. The New Pearl West combines the best of both featuring 6 holes set on the Calabash River highlighting the natural beauty of The Pearl. The Pearl opened in 1987 and was ranked among Golf Digest’s top places to play. Interested in learning more about the Pearl? Check out our Course Map to see yardage books and a layout of the course.
Imagine… while exploring the quaint fishing village of Calabash and the surrounding landscape caressed by the Calabash River, you happen upon such luxury and beauty that you never want to leave. You have discovered The Pearl golf course, a nine-hundred-acre garden park entwined with classically designed William E. Poole Signature Neighborhoods and enhanced by world class resort amenities to cater to your every whim. Magic abounds in every corner of The Pearl. The Pearl is all about nature, joy, beauty and love. Give your life a new perspective; come experience The Pearl.
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