Florida’s Streamsong resort will become a 54-hole facility later this year when the new Black course, designed by Gil Hanse and his team, opens.
GCA got an exclusive personal tour of the course from owner Mosaic Company’s VP of development Tom Sunnarborg recently. The course is still growing in, but, as the construction work was finished last summer, has already got very good grass coverage. By September, when it is due to open, it should be pristine.
Accessed off the entrance road to the resort, the Black is separated from the existing Red and Blue courses, and will have its own clubhouse, which is currently under construction. The new course will feel enormous, with a visual scale way bigger than the other two; this is primarily down to the nature of the property, which is undulating, but more open than that of Red or Blue, without the huge faux dunes that contain views across much of their site. It feels like an upland property, as though one is looking down on the surrounding land most of the time, with long views to the Lodge and the other two courses. The Black course matches this landscape, with wide fairways, enormous sand features and huge, highly contoured greens.
Holes that leap out on the Black include the par five fourth, massive at 640 yards with a vast split fairway challenging golfers to decide on the best route and then to execute on their decision and the intimidating uphill par three fifth. The green of the fifth hole is large, but almost entirely invisible from the tee; about all golfers will see is the flag, sitting atop a massive expanse of sand.
Sunnarborg confirmed that the main motivation for building the Black was driving occupancy in the resort’s 250-bedroom Lodge, and that a fourth course was likely, though perhaps not for a few years, for the same reason. Whether that will to be the much-touted replica of CB Macdonald’s lost Lido course on Long Island, he would not say. Mosaic has trademarked ‘The Lido at Streamsong’, but appears unsure whether the project is actually viable.