True Blue Plantation: A sprawling green paradise in Pawleys Island, South Carolina

PAWLEYS ISLAND, S.C. -- When True Blue Plantation opened in 1998 adjacent to the Caledonia Golf & Fish Club on the southern end of the Myrtle Beach Grand Strand, the Mike Strantz design had both fans and critics.

Each took a different view regarding how tough and penal the 7,126-yard golf course played. Begrudgingly, Strantz returned in 2000 to tweak nine holes, while the greens were converted to TifEagle Bermuda. The changes elevated True Blue to rock star status almost on par with Caledonia.

True Blue, rated among the top modern designs by Golfweek, counters Caledonia's intimate setting with a sprawling landscape revealing gigantic fairways, greens and waste areas. Even though it plays tougher than Caledonia, True Blue allows golfers to spray the ball and get away with it. The 624-yard No. 1 hole introduces the first of five meaty par 5s. Strantz defends par with elevated greens and flash-faced bunkers that can ruin rounds.

True Blue's watery three-hole finish ends with a difficult approach to a green tucked between a pond on the left and the clubhouse with its signature blue roof on the right.

Dec 29, 2011

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Jason Scott Deegan

Senior Staff Writer

Jason Scott Deegan has reviewed more than 700 courses and golf destinations for some of the industry's biggest publications. His work has been honored by the Golf Writer's Association of America and the Michigan Press Association. Follow him on Twitter at @WorldGolfer.