Mike Keiser first came to notice with the phenomal success of his business Recycled Greeting Cards.
It put him in the position of being able to pursue other interests..
Being a keen golfer, that opportunity soon came when he employed Dick Nugent to build Dunes Club near his holiday house in New Buffalo
Keiser loved Scottish links golf and saw an opportunity to bring links golf to America
He scoured the country for a suitable site and eventually settled on sandy terrain on the ocean near North Bend in Oregon.
Keiser overlooked America's 'name' architects and instead chose an inexperienced young Scottish architect named David Maclay Kidd to design a genuine links course at Bandon Dunes
Keiser had the experience of building Dunes Club so he had a taste for the build- but it was a huge risk
Bandon Dunes was remote and both Keiser and the architect were relatively inexperienced.
Bandon Dunes opened for play in 1999 and straight away golfers flocked to play true links golf in America
Such was the success that Keiser catered for the growing demand by immediately building a second course at Bandon.
In 2001 Tom Doak's Pacific Dunes opened and was instantly acclaimed as one of the best courses in the world
Bandon Trails by Coore & Crenshaw followed in 2005- and remarkably all three courses were regarded as being world top 100 standard.
And still demand grew!
Mike Keiser added Old MacDonald by Tom Doak in 2010, a thirteen hole par 3 course by Coore & Crenshaw in 2012 called The Preserve, and finally The Sheep Ranch by Coore & Crenshaw in 2020
Bandon Dunes Resort now boasts five world class links courses, an amazing par 3 course, fantastic putting greens and practice facilities, a variety of dining and accommodation options and the best pro shops anywhere.
Bandon Dunes is the best golf resort in the world, in my opinion!
It all started with Bandon Dunes.
Keiser wanted an authentic links course true to the Scottish traditions.
That meant no real estate, no golf carts, no clubhouse on the beach!
David Maclay Kidd was an inspired choice as architect.
His father was the head greenkeeper at Gleneagles, and David had grown up with Scottish golf in his blood.
While Americans had become accustomed to target golf, Kidd provided a true links where players must adapt to the running ball, and the ever present sea breeze.
And when the wind is up players become acqainted with the dense gorse framing the fairways- something they do not see so often on the parkland courses they are used to.
It looks good in flower, but it's nasty business extracting a golf ball from it..
Kidd's routing took full advantage of the site with a number of spectacular holes right on the clifftops.
Holes 4 through 6, 12, and 15 through 17 have the sea views and are all memorable
Notable holes include:
- hole 4, a strong par that doglegs gently right to a green with ocean backdrop
- hole 5, is the hardest hole on the course with a tee on the cliffs. It heads along the coast but with gorse both sides of the fairway the sea is the least of your concerns. The fairway is split by mounds of rough and requires accuracy rather than length to get home in regulation. It's a unique hole
- hole 6, is a longish par 3 right on the cliff. It often plays into the wind, and you just cannot go left and stay dry. Can be a brute when the wind is up..
- hole 9, is a long par 5 with a collection of pot bunkers in danger off the tee. Stay above ground or it becomes a long haul (see pic mid page)
- hole 12 is stunning par 3 with an elevated green protected by one nasty pot bunker front and centre
- hole 15 is another pretty par 3 with ocean backdrop
- hole 16 is perhaps 'the signature hole' at Bandon Dunes. The hole plays along the clifftops and over a gorge to a dramatic skyline green. It is a short hole and driveable by longer hitters, but accuracy is key as trouble abounds!
Bandon Dunes Resort is the best golf resort in the world, in my opinion.
And it all started with this course- Bandon Dunes
All true Travelling Golfers should visit Bandon Dunes Resort at least once in their lifetimes
We rate Bandon Dunes as a "Travelling Golfer must play!"
The Travelling Golfer can tailor a golf tour for your group.
Suggested itineraries can be found at Golf Destinations: Bandon Dunes Resort
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