We have returned from another successful, spring golf trip to Florida. This year we chose to go to the Fort Lauderdale, Florida area. I was chosen to organize the trip this year. This included the nervous task of selecting the golf courses. As golfers we really do not care about the hotel or food choices, it really is about the golf. However, picking good courses to play is essential to a successful trip. Since I did not receive any course recommendations prior to the trip, I began the online quest. After much reading and research I selected Emerald Hills, Plantation Preserve and Jacaranda Golf Club –East Course. None of these courses were actually in Ft Lauderdale, two were in Plantation, FL. and one was in Hollywood, Florida. One point to make when playing in Florida is the wind, water and sand. Pretty much every course has a lot of each so take plenty of balls.
The Plantation Preserve Golf Club was the final course we played and was the best maintained. The fairways, greens and tees we plush and were “country club” like. You got the feeling you were playing a private gold club not a public course. They also had a great pro shop with a nice variety of merchandise and an excellent lounge. I also wanted to point out the quality of the service as it was great. From the time we pulled in until the time we left the property the staff was very attentive. I highly recommend this facility for a day of golf.
Emerald Hills was without a doubt the most challenging course we played. Of course, a thirty mile per hour wind all day did not help. The pro shop worker warned us that we would face several holes where we could putt the ball off the green due to severe slopes in the greens. This was true and if the greens had been faster that would have happened. There are also a number of forced carries over water and into the greens. I would love to play this course again under more favorable conditions but do recommend you play the course if given the chance. Another note is that the course hosts pro qualifiers for tournaments such as the WGC event played at Doral. I can see why as they could make this course quite difficult if they chose to. The only knock on this course was a poorly stocked pro shop. If you’re looking for a souvenir shirt or hat from Emerald Hills you may be disappointed by the selection.
Jacaranda Golf Club- East Course
Jacaranda was the easiest golf course we played and reminded me of a municipal golf course. The fairways are very wide and the approach shots to the greens are quite generous. Like a lot Florida courses it is very flat with little elevation change. I think it is a great course to play if you are a beginner or intermediate player. You will not be overwhelmed with forced carries or long, tight par fours. With a variety of tee placements it is a very playable course. It is the type of course where you do not feel rushed and can have a relaxing round.