After changing owners a number of times, including separate stints in the hands of a Confederate Civil War general and a retired sea captain, the 152-acre plot of Mayfair Country Club was bought by the city of Sanford in 1922. The city quickly built four holes around the beautiful citrus trees and double row of oak trees, opening for business that same year under the title Sanford Country Club. By 1924, an 18-hole course opened and began to attract big-name golfers, including Gene Sarazen and Walter Hagen.
Unfortunately, the course’s upkeep was neglected during the nation's Great Golf-Ball Shortage. After the Depression passed, a small group of investors renovated the course and reopened it in 1945 under the name Seminole Country Club. The course wouldn’t be called the Mayfair Country Club until the late 1940s, when it was acquired by the NFL's New York Giants, a development that led to the course's hosting of PGA tour events from 1955 to 1957 and regular visits from legends such as Sam Snead and Arnold Palmer.
Today, players can walk the same fairways as the game's greats while grappling with the course’s difficult layout, named a Best Course to Play by Golf Digest. Opportunities for high-risk, high-reward shots abound, as two of the four par 5s measure less than 450 yards and the fairways remain as wide and inviting as they were in 1922, having managed to avoid growing thin and feeble with old age.
Course at a Glance:
Dickens Coffee and Tea Room hosts authentic British afternoon tea services in a whimsical and refined storefront led by a Welsh proprietor. Elaborate tea settings crown floral tablecloths, incorporating mismatched but complementary china depicting elegant patterns, lush flowers, or Welcome Back Kotter’s quadricentennial. Tiered silver stands stack individual noshes, beginning with a base of ham, cucumber and cream cheese, and egg-salad sandwiches made with local eggs, all spread upon specialty bread imported from Britain. Middle tiers teem with homemade cakes and pastries, and scones await slatherings of jam and cream on their perch atop the tea summit. Steaming pots of tea pour into delicate cups, complementing every sweet or savory Anglophilic bite. While sipping, patrons can fix their eyes on a stately wall mural portraying a Victorian street scene of storefronts, horse-drawn carts, and Dickens besting Thackeray at fisticuffs.
In 1991, tired of sating their late-night delivery cravings with pizza, University of Florida pals Matt Friedman and Adam Scott concocted an alternative snack in their frat house's kitchen. Many hours and tweaked sauce recipes later, the duo dispensed their brand of buffalo wings to the university’s students, selling out their stock in the first two nights. Since relocating from the frat house to its two original Gainesville storefronts, Wing Zone has opened nearly 100 locations worldwide, supplying wing lovers with boneless bites covered in 17 award-winning flavors, including nuclear habanero, garlic parm, and Honey Q. Many of the pair’s flavors have garnered awards at the National Buffalo Wing Festival, which recently inducted Matt and Adam into the Buffalo Wing "Hall of Flame," where they share reigniting duty every time a strong breeze extinguishes its symbolic eternal flame.
Tutto Bene Italian Restaurant's legion of pasta professionals dish up a menu of freshly prepared, old-fashioned Italian fare and imported spirits. A savory selection of palate-pleasing lunch specials includes authentic cheese pizzas ($4.50 for two slices, $9.95 for a 14"), chicken parmigiana ($7.95), and lasagna baked to saucy perfection ($7.25). Launch a dinner rocket with a loud crunch of crispy bruschetta ($5.95), or loosen tense garlic knots with a peaceful soak in a marinara bath ($1.75 for three). Diners can twirl forks through the sautéed onions, olives, capers, and anchovies topping a fresh plate of spaghetti alla puttanesca ($10.95), or strap on complimentary snorkels for a palatable plunge into the seafood risotto, which presents a sautéed school of calamari, shrimp, clams, mussels, and marinara sauce ($16.25).
The cooks at Piada & Piada create rich Italian dishes using imported, regional Italian ingredients and products. Whether seated indoors or on the outdoor patio, diners can enjoy the eatery's signature Piadizzas—thin-crust pizzas made on imported piada bread and topped with fresh meats, veggies, and sauces. A selection of Italian craft beers and wines complement the restaurant's many entrees.