Raven Golf Club
Four golf courses. Thirteen hundred condominiums, villas and town homes, and a hotel. A village with restaurants, nightlife, entertainment and shopping.
Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort on northwest Florida's Gulf Coast is for golfers who put a premium on options.
The course lineup at Sandestin features everything from a country club-for-a-day and an unheralded links-style layout, to a "Raven" branded course that has hosted the PGA Champions Tour.
The Village of Baytowne, located within the sprawling 2,400-acre resort, houses restaurants ranging from fine dining to Southern 'cue, and nightlife options aplenty.
Add seven miles of beaches and bay front; 15 tennis courts; 19 swimming pools; a 113-slip marina; and a fitness center and spa, and it's easy to see why Sandestin has established itself as a favorite of golf buddies coast to coast.
The Links Course
Burnt Pine Golf Club. Burnt Pine Golf Club is the work of Rees Jones. The club is private, but resort guests can play via a limited number of tee times. Stretching to more than 7,000 yards from the tips, Burnt Pine meanders through pine forests and wetlands before emerging along the Choctawhatchee Bay.
Raven Golf Club. Raven Golf Club is a two-time host of PGA Champions Tour events. Opened in 2000, the Robert Trent Jones II-design places a premium on accuracy. Raven and Burnt Pine make Sandestin the only place in the world where Rees and Robert Trent Jones II courses sit side-by-side.
Baytowne Golf Club. Baytowne Golf Club is the ideal arrival day track. The par-71 plays to a manageable 6,800 yards from the tips, and its wide fairways wipe away both jetlag and off-season rust. The course was renovated by original architect Tom Jackson in 2005 and features several holes with elevation changes, a rarity in Northwest Florida.
The Links Course. Jackson's second contribution, The Links Course, is a tip of the cap to the origins of the ancient game. Thanks to the challenging layout and ubiquitous Bay winds, The Links Course has garnered the reputation as one of the area's ultimate risk-reward courses.
Set 'em Up, Knock It Down
Trajectory control is a must at Sandestin. The resort's proximity to the Gulf and Bay mean windy conditions. Keeping the ball low is a necessity for golfers hoping to score. Some advice from Burnt Pine's director of golf, Jared Morton:
• Take one or two extra clubs
• Place the ball between the center of your stance and the inside of your back foot
• Take a half to three-quarters backswing
• Make a smooth swing and abbreviate the finish
The Links Course
Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport (ECP) offers direct flights from Houston, Baltimore/Washington DC, Atlanta, Orlando, Nashville and Memphis. Northwest Florida Regional Airport (VPS) offers direct flights from Dallas, Houston, Charlotte, Louisville and Atlanta.
When To Go
The courses are in full-swing year-round. Fall and spring are peak golf seasons, with high temps in the 70s and 80s, and lows in the 50s and 60s. Summer is the peak season for the Inn, so plan accordingly. Winter is downright bearable, with highs in the 60s.
For More Information
Visit www.sandestin.com or call (888) 801-4388.