The Kingsley Club
|Red (W)||71||4987 yards||69.5||129|
|Gold M: 73.2/141||602||161||426||411||222||396||569||360||165||3312||446||180||455||292||615||465||225||544||422||3644||6956|
|Member M: 70.8/133||568||161||412||411||191||373||512||360||165||3153||393||180||425||292||510||421||175||509||422||3327||6480|
|Blue M: 70.1/132 W: 76.8/143||568||140||412||385||191||373||512||349||148||3078||393||141||425||271||510||421||175||509||386||3231||6309|
|White M: 67.7/127 W: 73.9/137||542||115||374||376||178||306||490||321||115||2817||364||121||335||246||466||408||154||484||360||2938||5755|
|Red W: 69.5/129||480||73||287||281||140||270||447||251||106||2335||300||114||335||246||445||370||138||412||292||2652||4987|
I was fortunate to play Kingsley which is a private club. Kingsley like many new great courses in America is the result of great natural conditions and smart people. Very little earth was moved to make this amazing course, which features amazing elevation changes and undulations throughout the course that give it it's character, along with great bunkering, uniquely shaped greens and some of the best routing I have every played. While not overly long the course is a serious challenge, the position is key in the fairway to give you a possible chance of a shot into these very difficult greens. You can hit a great drive and the firm and fast conditions along with the natural motion of the fairways and you will find a very daunting approach. When the wind blows you will definitely play shots along the grown but the course allows you many ways to approach par but very few for birdies. The course has the feel of Scotland, with the hard fescue fairways and you will feel a sense of calm and peace as you connect with your inner golfer on the course which is only 30 minutes from Traverse City but is very isolated. The team at Kingsley is small but some of the best in the game. They keep it simple as Kingsley, simply awesome, nothing pretentious just a pitch-perfect environment for real golfers.
Golf as it should be
This was my second time playing the Kingsley Club and I enjoyed it even more than my first. As you walk up to the clubhouse, you're met with some of my favorite views in golf. It certainly isn't something you're expecting in Kingsley, MI. The fescue fairways play firm and fast and the greens are scary fast, but extremely enjoyable to putt on. Of the many great northern Michigan courses I've played (including Arcadia Bluffs and The Bear), this is the one I think about most often. The elevation changes and scenery make this course breathtakingly beautiful. If you're in northern Michigan and have an opportunity to play, I highly recommend it. This is my favorite course in Michigan!
Just Pure Golf Experience
Kingsley Club is the purest golf experience i have had the pleasure to play. The terrain and topography is absolutely stunning, greens are complex and true. Many tee shots are blind over huge mounds and ridges with generous landing areas if the correct line is taken. Practice facility is the best ive seen in the state as well with many pins as well as a large bunker to practice fairway shots (you will hit some of those throughout the round). The clubhouse is the modest of any club ive had the privilege to play, and its supposed to be that way. Kingsley Club is ALL GOLF, no frills. Come and enjoy what is easily one of the greatest tracks in the entire state.
A modern take on classic architecture
The most coveted round in northern Michigan may be at the revered Crystal Downs, but the nearby Kingsley Club near Traverse City, just over a decade old, has quickly made a name for itself as one of the most architecturally fascinating rounds in the state. Designed by Mike Devries (who grew up at Crystal Downs), Kingsley Club has a lot of similar elements: rugged, tumbling fairways, fescue rough and imaginative green complexes. Fairways are huge and the greens are all shapes and sizes. This is a true members club in the fact that you'll want to play this course a few times to learn the many nuances, and every approach shot keeps you on your toes. There are a lot of neat holes and the par 5s are all a lot of fun. But this is a course that has such a pleasant flow to the round you seem remember the overall ambiance more than any "signature" holes, though the split fairway on the 1st hole and the massive slope on the 17th fairway are certainly some memorable touches. You're sure to have a "memorable" lie to say the least in one of the many bunkers with wispy fescue borders and passive pitch shots are bound to end up back at your feet.
The club itself is no-frills. A small clubhouse that's barely bigger than a double-wide and unpaved cart paths. The practice facility meanwhile is excellent and the club recently added some stay-and-play, 4-bedroom cottages for groups. It's still a private club, but golfers who are sponsored by a phone call from their PGA professional have a good chance of getting on.
If you love seeing a 21st century take on classic era architecture, there are few if any better rounds in the Midwest than Kingsley.
A private retreat in northern Michigan that's accessible
The Kingsley Club has that exclusive private-club vibe that every course aspires to, but it's also got a little bit of public access allowing serious players an in. Golfers need to have the golf pro at their club call on their behalf to book a tee time.
The Kingsley Club is all about fun. The hilly terrain and hardwoods of northern Michigan are the setting for an inland links that plays firm and fast on all-fescue fairways. The five par 3s are all fantastic, and overly penal on misses. There's plenty of great golf in northern Michigan, but none as unique and inspiring as the Kingsley Club.