New Tempest Golf Club takes shape in East Texas

  • Lovely Golf Course

    Brauer is aiming for Tempest Golf Club to have the best course in East Texas

  • Lovely Golf Course

    The course is scheduled to open for play in July 2018

Sean Dudley
By Sean Dudley

A new golf course designed by architect Jeff Brauer is taking shape in East Texas.

Tempest Golf Club is being built near Gladewater, Texas, on the site of the former Southern Hills Golf Club.

GCA reported on Brauer’s plans back in November 2016, and the reworked course is now taking shape ahead of a scheduled July 2018 opening.

The new course will measure 7,068 yards. The opening six holes are being built over the former course on the site, but the other 12 are completely new and built on land previously set aside for residential lots.

According to Brauer, highlights of the design include the sixth, eleventh and twelfth holes, with the eleventh deemed the course’s most challenging by the architect. This par four hole plays around an existing lake on the site, and stretches to 450 yards.

“I don't believe in designing tough courses,” said Brauer, who recently completed a renovation project at Superior National in Lutsen, Minnesota. “Neither potential members, average golfers, or even millennials who will eventually support this course are enamored with extremely difficult tests of golf, although that philosophy was embraced and seemed true in the past. I am taking advantage of the site to design for moderately challenging, intensely interesting and beautiful golf.”

The original Southern Hills course was the brainchild of owner Joe Bruno. A New Orleans-based attorney, Bruno developed the course and its surrounding neighbourhood as a gift to his children and grandchildren.

“We have always had the stated goal of being the best course in East Texas and the site allows us to accentuate what the land gives us,” said Brauer. “Mr Bruno has spared no expense giving us everything we’ve asked for, but the canvas itself just needed to be brought forward with a playable routing. Mr. Bruno’s architectural projects have won awards – he understands good design, and he is known for demanding the very best, which set the tone for the project.”

A video showing drone footage of the course taking shape is available here, courtesy of Luis Lopez Photography and Video.