A diverse collection of mature trees populates Oronoque Country Club's 18-hole course, their sturdy trunks imbuing the 6,575-yard layout with the venerable feel that only comes with age. However, the trees are far from just a cosmetic asset. Whether casting their shadows over straight fairways or using their knotty arms to block corner-cutting drives on the course's five dog-leg holes, the trees play a major role in making the mid-length course both challenging to golfers and attractive to retirement-age squirrels. The course also features two ponds that come into play, including one that creates a forced-carry tee shot on the par 3 third hole. Elsewhere, the club boasts a driving range, a practice green, and a trio of golf instructors that help correct swings and teach visitors to ride bareback on golf carts.
Course at a Glance:
Twin Lakes Golf Course is set on grounds that have been walked by golfers for more than 50 years, but enjoy the modern touches of a recent revamping. New tee boxes reside atop the professionally manicured greens that carpet the 10-acre course. Its renovated clubhouse offers guests the supplies they need for gameplay, including clubs and pull carts. After a round, players can return to the clubhouse where pizza bubbles in a wood-burning oven and cool beverages flow freely from taps.
At The Fairways Driving Range, players can practice all the skills they need to excel on the course. Golfers can take aim at grass target greens at a range with grass tees as well as covered mat hitting areas. A greenside sand trap lets golfers hone their scrambling skills, and a 4,000 square-foot, bent-grass practice green provides a slick surface for golfers to work on their touch with the putter. The practice facility also lets players demo a number of training aids to perfect their form.
At Studio Golf, players smack their golf balls into a large screen that displays a highly accurate visual of a real golf course and uses ball flight information to produce real-world results. Rather than travel to oft-distant courses and schlep their clubs around 18 holes, players get to remain indoors and let the computer do the traveling for them. The system can be configured for lessons and clinics in addition to 9- or 18-hole rounds, allowing players to focus on aspects of their game such as drives off the tee or iron approaches.
Designed by legendary fairway-carver Robert Trent Jones Jr., Long Island National Golf Club Riverhead's 18-hole course layout runs along 6,838 yards of rolling terrain wreathed by farmland and vineyards. Throughout the round, each hole plots a path through a sea of knee-high fescue grass that sways in the wind atop fairway side mounds, channeling the look of golf's seminal Scottish courses. Water comes into play on four holes, promising a grim fate for wayward balls that don't speak catfish. Rated the course's hardest hole, the par 5 18th offers a dramatic end to the round, as clubbers must blast the ball 590 yards over a treacherously narrow fairway to reach the green. Alongside the grassy monolith, soaring drives lift off from a gallery of hitting stalls at the driving range, where players can smooth out herky-jerky swings and make clubs do calisthenics in preparation for their round.
Those looking to upgrade their golf garbs or replace a club damaged in a street fight with a gang of croquet mallets can head to the pro shop, which peddles apparel and equipment from top brands including Titleist, FootJoy, and Adidas. Post-round hunger meets its match at Bogey's Grill, which serves up savory grill fare and icy drinks to weary linksmen.
Course at a Glance:
Designed by Robert Trent Jones, Jr.
18-hole, par-71 course
Length of 6,838 yards from the farthest tees
Four tee options
Measuring 5,825 yards from the farthest tees, Hawk's Landing Country Club's 18-hole, par 70 golf course doesn't require extreme length off the tee—but it does demand accuracy. Dense groves of trees squeeze nearly every fairway and green, and water hazards lure errant golf balls and thirsty golf carts on seven holes. On the 5th and 6th holes—two midlength par 4s—and the par 5 hole 17, golfers must exercise caution on both their drives and approach shots to avoid peripheral waterways that run along the length of the fairways. After carefully working around ponds and streams throughout the course, the 18th hole brings the round to a fitting end: a 190-yard par 3 where tee shots must somersault directly over a water hazard stationed right in front of the green. Before rounds, golfers can warm up their swings at the club's grass-tee driving range or sign misbehaving short irons up for a lesson at Hawk's Landing's golf academy.
Course at a Glance: