by Alicia Whitley for The Island Connection
The Golf Club at Briar’s Creek, sitting on 900 scenic acres on Johns Island, recently completed a two-year, $6.5 million renovation to the club’s golf course and facilities, including a complete course transformation, the opening of the Robert C. McNair Golf Performance Center and the addition of three on-site cottages.
The majority owner of the private club is McNair Interests, founded by the late entrepreneur and philanthropist Robert C. “Bob” McNair.
“The improvements have undoubtedly added to the superb quality of our course and facilities while maintaining its character,” said Superintendent Kyle Bibler. “We are committed to providing our members with the most excellent golf experience in the Lowcountry.”
Southeastern Golf, Inc. completed the six-month renovation to the Rees Jonesdesigned golf course, which included re-grassing tees and fairways as well as the greens, which were also restored to their original size. The layout of several holes was enhanced to open vistas and bring water into play. The green on hole number 12 was moved to incorporate an adjacent lagoon, and number 13 tee boxes were shifted to maximize course views and provide more interesting shots.
Throughout the course, the 250,000 square feet of bunkers was reduced to 125,000 square feet, along with significant drainage improvements.
The new 1,000-square-foot Robert C. McNair Performance Facility features a dedicated putting room, a hitting bay equipped with cameras and top-of-theline swing and ball flight monitors and a club-fitting room to ensure members are outfitted with the proper equipment.
The center also includes a cutting-edge course simulator, which allows members to practice virtually on real courses throughout the United States. The facility is ideal for practice, lessons, clinics and golf schools under the leadership of Director of Instruction Hank Smith.
Three on-site cottages – Heron, Ibis and Osprey – are now accommodating members and their guests. A nine-hole lighted putting course – Churchill – was also installed in front of the cottages. The moniker was selected by Cary McNair as homage to his father’s admiration for Winston Churchill.
“Each of these improvements have realized Bob McNair’s vision to create a golf club that offers state-of-the-art facilities along with the highest possible level of service,” said Director of Golf Eve VanderWeele.
Opened in 2001, Briar’s Creek features an award-winning Rees Jones golf course that embraces the Lowcountry landscape and diverse wildlife along the Kiawah River.