For traveling golfers, one of the highlights of the New Year is Golfweek’s ranking of the “Top 200 resort courses in the U.S.,” and as players peruse this year’s list, it won’t take long to find Caledonia Golf & Fish Club and True Blue Golf Club.
The Mike Strantz designs were both ranked among America’s top 100 resort courses with Caledonia moving up to No. 46, edging past the Dunes Golf & Beach Club as the Myrtle Beach area’s highest rated layout. True Blue was No. 86, finishing ahead of courses such as Wailea and Innisbrook’s Copperhead Course, both top 100 designs that annually host PGA Tour events.
Caledonia, which celebrated the 25th anniversary of its opening on January 1, moved up two spots, highlighting its enduring popularity with course raters and traveling golfers. A consensus top 100 public design, Caledonia helped launch the late Strantz to architectural fame.
The course is routed through a stunning piece of Lowcountry property, and Strantz maximized the layout’s cozy confines, showcasing the live oak trees draped in Spanish moss the area is renowned for and his own creative genius.
On a course filled with unforgettable holes, the par-4 18th is Caledonia’s most memorable challenge. A dogleg right, the iconic finisher requires a dramatic carry over the marshy waters of the Waccamaw Neck to a green that resides in the shadow of the course’s stately clubhouse.
While Caledonia features a more classic design, True Blue is a byproduct of Strantz’s seemingly boundless creativity, challenging players with some of the area’s widest fairways, sprawling waste bunkers, and boldest greens complexes.
The layout features five par-5s, 5-par 3 and the sixth hole has two greens, highlighting Strantz’s willingness to buck conventional wisdom while designing a course that has earned a litany of national honors.
True Blue is arguably the Myrtle Beach area’s most audacious layout, but Strantz never lost sight of the importance of playability, and the opportunity to score, especially for mid to high handicappers, is part of the course’s considerable appeal.
Caledonia and True Blue are separated by less than a half-mile, providing golfers stay-and-play access to two of the top 5 public courses in all of golf-rich South Carolina.