A recreational destination since Devereax Emmet and Alfred M. Tull sculpted it into the East Hartford countryside in 1930, Long Hill Country Club’s 18-hole course unfurls 6,014 yards of manicured fairways and greens. Mature trees form a path along the par 70, impeding golf balls that stray to the rough in a short-sighted search for a soft landing. The course features three tee options to appeal to golfers of all abilities.
Course at a Glance:
Called America's Best New Public Course Under $75 in 2006 by Golf Digest, King Carter’s course of scenic fairways and championship tees challenges ball-smackers of every strength. Up to two golfers can club through King Carter’s par 71 greenery (up to $49 value each), which features up to 6,818 yards of majestic vineyard views. King Carter’s Old World–inspired course design invites golfers with its natural woods, glistening streams, dramatic contours, and sand traps hosting life-size dioramas of The Iliad. Game-day golfers will also receive two small buckets of range balls (a $3 value each) to practice at King Carter’s 20 station tees and short-game area, plus a cart for cruising the fairways. After swinging their way across the well-tended turf, metal-rod-wielders can mend fatigued physiques with a meal fit for a summer camper: chips, a bottle of soda, and a choice of a hot dog, hamburger, or cheeseburger (an $8 value).
A Hartford community staple since it was sculpted around the 1930s, Goodwin Park Golf Course peppers the countryside with 27 holes of various challenges. The main 18-hole, 6,015 yard course weaves among trees and gentle hills, offering three sets of tees for different handicaps, while a shorter 9-hole executive layout lets golfers squeeze in a round before their magic driver turns back into a useless tent pole.
Course at a Glance:
At Keney Golf Course, players follow an emerald track chiseled into the heavily wooded terrain of the 694-acre Keney Park. Devereaux Emmet and Alfred M. Tull unveiled their course design in 1927, inviting golfers to challenge their skills on the 18-hole, 6,014-yard layout. Along the way, golfers encounter an intersecting stream, dense forest groves, and a cemetery that borders several holes, but none of the quicksand bunkers incorporated by the original architects.
Course at a Glance
Despite its seemingly short length of 2,668 yards from the back tees, Minnechaug Golf Course keeps rounds interesting by packing a cornocopia of hazards into a 9-hole layout. Players confront an onslaught of elevation changes, dogleg turns, and trees that won’t respond to verbal commands throughout the par 35 course. And the degree of difficultry truly ramps up on the par 3 eighth, which invites players to unsheathe their 9-iron or pitching wedge, take stock of the prevailing winds, and send tee shots flying toward an island green that rests on the other side of a 126-yard water hazard.
When Arnold Palmer’s architectural firm set out to design the 18-hole course at Gillette Ridge Golf Club, it incorporated a long, wooded layout that would showcase the 19th-century politician and reformer Francis Gillette’s original homestead. Today, the course continues to showcase its beautifully crafted layout that has maintained the elegance of a bygone era while opting to share its charming characteristics with the public. Gillette Ridge welcomes all golfers to take on the blistering 7,191-yard tract that integrates groves of mature trees, placid water hazards, and white-sand bunkers that surround contoured greens.
Much of the course's difficulty comes from its length, as demonstrated on the par 5 seventh and 12th holes, which stretch 612 yards and 607 yards from the tips, respectively. Both holes make it nearly impossible to reach the green in two, though for different reasons: the seventh green prevents run-ups with a front side stream, whereas the 12th hole has an early dogleg right that demands more conservative tee shots and golf carts that are pro-environment. The course's premium on distance continues right through the finishing hole, a par 4, 478-yard straightaway that splits two fairway bunkers and forces players to carry the green's front side pond on their approach shot or hope that a friendly frog will lend a lily pad for safe passage. Three practice putting greens, two practice bunkers, and an all-grass driving range provide ample space for golfers to stretch their swings before rounds.
After rounds, players can unwind in Gillette Ridge’s 6,000-square-foot clubhouse, where the course restaurant serves up sandwiches such as the philly cheesesteak and chicken-salad sliders, and starters such as Maryland crab cakes and quesadillas—the late Mrs. Gillette’s specialty that has carried on since the 19th century.
Course at a Glance: