On a list of Daytona Beach golf courses people always remember, Spruce Creek Country Club ranks somewhere near the top.
Built on land that was home to a United States Naval base during World War II, Spruce Creek is now America’s largest fly-in community. An airstrip that used to support American military efforts runs through the heart of Spruce Creek Country Club.
Playing the eighth and ninth holes, planes ranging from luxury private jets to small, single engine aircrafts will pass no more than 200 feet overhead as they take off or land. It’s an unforgettable part of the Spruce Creek experience, complementing a course that golfers love.
Part of the layout’s charm is the diversity of experience. Five holes on the front nine play along Spruce Creek; it’s the tighter of the two sides, but also a little easier. Architect Bill Amick provides players the opportunity to get off to a good start with a 475-yard par 5 as the opening hole and a 292-yard par 4 on the second (yardages are from the white tees).
On the back nine, the tree lines recede but there is water on eight of nine holes and it typically plays a couple strokes tougher. The challenge on the back side is at its peak on the par 5 12th, which plays 487 yards and has water along the entire right side of the hole.
The common denominator that runs throughout the course is the quality of the greens, which tend to be open and feature gentle contours that stand in stark contrast to the severe undulation of many modern designs.
The greens are conducive to making putts and the openness encourages players to play chip shots, allowing them to run the ball onto the putting surface.
Spruce Creek Country Club, which prides itself on providing guests a member-for-a-day type experience, will deliver a round that you will tell everyone about long after you have returned home.
Written by Chris King for Daytona Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau