New York City is getting a brand new public golf course. Trump Golf Links Ferry Point Park.  (Courtesy of Trump Golf Links Ferry Point) From the 13th tee, you look past the 12th green and down the mile and a half of coastline used to build Cabot Cliffs. (Matt Ginella/Golf Advisor) Northwest of Phoenix, Wickenburg Ranch is offering public preview play in 2015.  (Courtesy of Wickenburg Ranch) In Cabo San Lucas, Jack Nicklaus opened spectacular Quivira in the fall of 2014.  (Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor) In Las Vegas, Reflection Bay reopened in the fall of 2014 five years after it closed its doors.  (Courtesy of Reflection Bay) From left, Beacon Land Development partners Casey Paulson and Michael Abbott meet with Tiger Woods during a site visit to Bluejack National. (Courtesy of Beacon Land Development) The 401-yard first hole introduces the beautiful mountainous setting of the Canyons Golf Course in Park City.  (Courtesy of Christiaan Boer) West of Sioux City, Tatanka at Ohiya Resort & Casino debuts a new course, Tantanka, in 2015.  (Courtesy of Ohiya Resort)

Game on: These new North American golf courses are set to open in 2015



Attention bucket-listers and new golf course chasers: you've got a lot to see this year in North America. There are some long-awaited, high-profile projects finally set to debut, none more anticipated than New York City's brand new muni: Trump Golf Links Ferry Point.

Perhaps the project with the most potential is Cabot Cliffs, a brand new links course in Cape Breton that has had bucket listers salivating since the first picture of the site surfaced a few years ago.

But there are some lesser-known projects that hope to steal a little ink from Trump and Coore-Crenshaw.

Here's a breakdown of all the new courses expected to open in North America in 2015, as well as some of the more extensive renovations and some courses that opened in late 2014.

Trump Golf Links Ferry Point, New York City

Well more than a decade in the making and with a reported price tag of $100-200 million, Trump Golf Links Ferry Point -- New York City's new muni -- is finally reaching the finish line and has an official opening date of April 1. Designed by Jack Nicklaus and John Sanford, it's set at the base of the Whitestone Bridge in the Bronx, is the first public New York City course in more than a half century. Donald Trump assumed management of the construction in 2012 and will operate the course. Open to the public (non-NYC residents will pay more), it's already been named host of the 2017 Barclays in the FedEx Cup Playoffs.

Golden Nugget, Lake Charles, Louisiana

In the gaming mecca of Lake Charles, where Houstonians go to play the tables, the new Golden Nugget casino and 750-room hotel is now open. The property's 18-hole golf course, located next to the existing Tom Fazio design, Contraband Bayou at the L'Auberge Resort, will open on April 30th.

Grand Falls Casino & Golf Resort, Iowa

That's not the only casino property scheduled to open this spring. In Iowa, near Sioux Falls, S.D., the Grand Falls Casino & Golf Resort is set to debut an 18-hole course designed by Rees Jones. The course opening was a delayed a season as a result of the harsh winter in the Midwest. The countryside course can play more than 7,100 yards and has some casino bells and whistles like a 30-foot waterfall.

Tatanka at Ohiya Resort & Casino, Nebraska

Another Native American casino property golf course is coming to the heartland two hours down the road from Grand Falls: Tatanka (meaning "Buffalo" in Lakota, part of Sioux Nation). The course, designed by Paul Albanese, winds through gently rolling hills and trees and close to native buffalo. Scheduled to open in 2015, it's an added amenity to the Ohiya Casino Resort, which opened in 1998.

Wickenburg Ranch, Wickenburg, Arizona

About an hour or so northwest of Phoenix, Wickenburg Ranch is set to open on Feb. 7 as part of a new master-planned community. The course was originally scheduled to open in 2008 but was put on hold during the economic downturn. Planned as a private club, the course will offer public tee times in the first year for between $75-95 and include some nice Travis Mathieu apparel to go with the round.

(Update: Mike Bailey visited the course and reports it's already one of the best golf courses in Arizona)

Canyons Golf Course, Park City, Utah

Similar to Wickenburg Ranch, Park City's Canyons Golf Course has been a long time coming and will officially open this spring. Jason Scott Deegan had a sneak preview of the Gene Bates design last summer.

Championsgate Country Club

Another course that was mostly built but put on hiatus for the better part of a decade, Championsgate Country Club opened in early 2015. The course is intended to complement the existing 36 holes at the resort as a private course for residents of the new community.

Trilogy at Ocala Preserve, Florida

Perhaps the most unique golf course set to open in 2015 is in Ocala at the Trilogy at Ocala Preserve. The course features a flexible routing that can play in a dozen different ways, from an par-54, 18-hole course to a regulation length six-hole loop. Mike Bailey has more details of this innovative concept.

Bluejack National, Montgomery, Texas

Tiger Woods' first U.S. golf course design, Bluejack National, is presently underway just north of the Houston area. Planned as a high-end members club, Bluejack National is being built atop the shuttered Blaketree National. Read Mike Bailey's story for more. The course is scheduled to open in the fall.

Cabot Cliffs, Cape Breton, Canada

In Cape Breton, Cabot Links is getting a sister course, Cabot Cliffs. Set atop dramatic cliffs a few minutes outside the town of Inverness and the original Cabot course and hotel, the Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw design will sit on some of Canada's most spectacular coastal land. Preview play of the course is expected late in the 2015 golf season. Matt Ginella provded an update after his visit this fall.

The Links at Brunello, Halifax, Canada

Cabot Cliffs isn't the only new course coming to the Maritimes. The Links at Brunello is scheduled to open this summer. Toronto's Adam Stanley has more details on The Links at Brunello as well as other developments in the Canadian golf scene for 2015, including the brand new Lubovic Golf Club in Ontario.

TPC Baha Mar, Bahamas

A mega golf and gaming resort is opening in Nassau: Baha Mar, a $3.5 billion development with an 18-hole Jack Nicklaus signature design. The front nine will play more wide open and along the ocean, while the back will play through forest. The course appointed the TPC Network to manage it last year and is set to open in the spring of 2015.

Hudson County Golf Course, New Jersey

GolfCourseArchitecture.net reports a nine-hole course in Hudson County is scheduled to open for play this year. Designed by Architect Roy Case, the course will play 3,200 yards across 55 waterfront acres and have three par 3s, 4s and 5s.

Reopenings in 2015 after extensive renovations

Trump's overhaul of the 90-hole Doral resort in Miami continues in 2015 with the reopenings of two courses after significant renovations: the Golden Palm and Silver Fox courses. Both are set to debut in early 2015 and promise entirely new playing experiences from the existing Silver and Gold courses. Red Tiger reopened in late 2014, and the Blue Monster reopened just prior to the WGC Cadillac Championship in the spring.

In San Antonio, the Golf Club of Texas has been closed for most of 2014 as it received a significant $3.5 million renovation. The course is being reseeded with Zoysia turf and is set for a grand reopening in March.

Things are pretty quiet in Hawaii, though one development is Kona Country Club shutting down both courses until the summer of 2015 for enhancements to irrigation, greens, cart paths and more. Meanwhile, on Kauai, the Prince Course is shutting down again and will reopen later this year as a private club, reports Mike Bailey.

About an hour northeast of San Diego, the historic resort of Warner Springs Ranch is undergoing a $50 renovation of its property as the result of new ownership purchasing the 2,500-acre resort out of bankruptcy in 2013. The course, originally opened in 1984, is planning a 2015 reopening this spring, while the resort should open later.

Westham Golf Club, near Richmond, Va. is finally getting it's back nine. The course, designed by Jack Nicklaus, originally opened in 2010. The club is wrapping up construction on the remaining nine holes, designed by Nicklaus Design associate Chris Cochran and is scheduled to debut them this year, while the name of the course is changing to Magnolia Green Golf Club.

The City of Hobbs is putting the finishing touches on Rockwind Community Links, a 27-hole facility comprised of an 18-hole championship course and 9-hole par-3 course designed by Andy Staples Golf Design. Set to open in May, the new courses were built out of the existing Ocotillo Park Golf Course and is aimed at providing a family-friendly golf experience and is also home to a chapter of the First Tee.

New golf courses opened in late 2014

Tiger Woods opened his long-awaited first new golf course design in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. El Cardonal at Diamante had its grand opening in December and is planned as a high-end members club.

Nearby, Jack Nicklaus debuted the stunning Quivira Golf Club. Jason Scott Deegan attended the grand opening in Cabo.

Meanwhile, in Las Vegas, another Nicklaus design was given a second life. Reflection Bay at Lake Las Vegas, which closed in 2009, reopened for play in the fall.

Big news in SoCal in November 2014: The exclusive Montesoro Golf Club, shuttered during the economic downturn, reopened as Ram's Hill at Borrego Springs. The Tom Fazio design, located between San Diego and Palm Springs, can be played for $150, or $75 in the afternoon.

At Walt Disney World, the transformation of Osprey Ridge Golf Club to Tranquilo at Four Seasons Walt Disney is complete. The hotel opened and the Tom Fazio-designed course, with a modified routing, is fully operational.

Also in Florida, historic Fort Myers Country Club, a former Donald Ross club that is now city-owned, was extensively rebuilt by architect Steve Smyers and is now a 7,000-yard-plus, par-70 design from the tips. The course reopened Oct. 31, 2014.

In Georgia, Pete Dye and Tim Liddy rebuilt Ford Plantation from the studs. Members of the high-end private club gave Dye an unlimited budget to modernize the course that sits along the Ogeechee River near Savannah.

New golf courses scheduled for 2016 and beyond

In Dallas, Trinity Forest, designed by Coore & Crenshaw, is slated for a 2016 opening. It will be private, but due to its partnership with the city of Dallas, at least 25 percent of rounds must be public play.

In Michigan, the much-anticipated second (and third) course at Forest Dunes is currently under construction. The Tom Doak design, which can be played in reverse (like the Old Course in St. Andrews), will alternate directions on a daily basis.

Also in the Midwest, Sand Valley is Mike Keiser's newest project and currently under construction. The first 18 holes are scheduled to open in 2017. Matt Ginella has the latest on the project.

And nearby, at Whistling Straits, planning is still underway for a fifth Pete Dye course at the Kohler Resort. This will be located just up the Lake Michigan frontage from the Straits Course.

In the shadow of Bandon Dunes on the coast of southern Oregon, Pacific Gales is under development. Though the owners had planned a 2016 grand opening, the Oregon Coast Alliance invoked a challenge to the project in the fall.

Lastly, big things are happening in the Branson golf scene. Last year, Tom Fazio-designed Branson Creek, one of the area's top plays, was purchased by Johnny Morris, owner of Bass Pro Shops, and renamed Buffalo Ridge Springs. Morris also bought Murder Rock Golf Club. Top of the Rock, a stunning par-3 course, was added to the Champions Tour rotation. And now, another neat concept was announced in 2014: Big Cedar Lodge, a 12-hole course designed by Gary Player's firm. No opening date has been announced yet.

Are there any planned renovations to golf courses in your neck of the woods? Let us know what you're excited about in 2015 in the comments below.

Jan 07, 2015



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Brandon Tucker

Managing Editor

Brandon Tucker is the Managing Editor for Golf Advisor. To date, his golf travels have taken him to over two dozen countries and over 500 golf courses worldwide. While he's played some of the most prestigious courses in the world, Tucker's favorite way to play the game is on a great muni in under three hours. Follow Brandon on Twitter at @BrandonTucker and on Instagram at BrandonTuckerGC.