WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Guests of The Breakers Palm Beach should never leave during their stay. There's plenty of reasons to hang around - a beautiful beach, a five-star hotel dating to the roaring 1920s, four pools, the Ocean course - Florida's oldest golf course, and plenty of great places to eat, notably the Seafood Bar, home to the world's longest aquarium bar.
But a round at the Rees Jones course might be the best reason to stray. The 7,104-yard course is located 11 miles/20 minutes from the resort inside a gated community called the Breakers West Country Club. The resort does offer a shuttle ride to guests who need one.
The Jones course could be the best resort course in south Florida that hasn't hosted the PGA TOUR. It's a challenge, yet truly enjoyable for all handicaps.
A 2004 redesign/renovation by Jones turned an old Willard Byrd course dating to 1968 into a pure delight (Ken Green also worked on it in 1994). The best holes call for heroic water shots, starting with the dog-left par-4 second. The 191-yard eighth and 161-yard 11th holes anchor a nice collection of water-laden par 3s. The highlight, however, comes at the boomerang par-4 ninth. How many great holes can you think of where a score from 1 through 10 is in play? There's a plaque on the 390-yard white tees celebrating some lucky guy who took on all that water to land an ace. For the rest of us, when facing two tough shots over water, par will suffice.