Land comprising the former Rancho San Carlos sold in 1990 to a group of savvy investors who founded The Santa Lucia Preserve.
Their vision was to establish a member owned and governed community with appreciation for an outdoor lifestyle.
18,000 of the 20,000 acres in the property were labelled 'preserved lands', and protected from development.
297 home development sites were planned as well as an 18 hole golf course, 100 miles of hiking and equestrian trails, and facilities for many other sporting pursuits.
The Preserve Golf Club was designed by Tom Fazio and opened for play in April, 2000
Fazio had a lovely rolling site as his canvass, and has produced a very nice course.
We had the good fortune of playing The Preserve on a perfect blue sky day.
The course has a picturesque setting with abundant wildlife (turkeys, deer, hawks) enjoying the verdant landscape.
Silky Oaks, maples and sycamore trees frame the fairways.
The playing surfaces are in top condition, and nicely bunkered.
Unfortunately the course set up makes it a cart course for most, as many of the tees are somewhat segregated from the fairways.
I would have liked to walk the fairways given the beauty of the site, and many of the holes were very walkable from the beginning of the fairway to the green.
Fazio has bunkered the course attractively, but it is surprisingly undemanding strategically.
Notable Holes include:
- hole 3 (Duck Pond), an attractive par 4 with water in play off the tee, and a tricky green with false front to negotiate (see pic top of page)
- hole 4 (Deer Leg), a double dogleg par 5 that requires a golfer to plot their way to the green
- hole 5 (Summit), a mid length uphill par 4 playing to a raised left to right aligned green protected by a large centrally placed bunker
- hole 14 (Sycamore), a long, challenging par 3 to a green in a glade of trees
- hole 16 (Scotch), a picturesque short par 3 into the prevaling wind
- hole 18 (Watson's Choice), a long, strong par 4 closing hole, that starts with a forced carry, and tests the final shot with a long approach to a raised green
The Preserve is a course that will only be experienced by the privileged few, being members and their guests.
Given it's secluded location it is unlikely that the golfing public will even know of it's existence.
And that is a pity as it is a lovely site, a pretty decent course, and 'just a nice place to play golf'.
The Travelling Golfer can tailor a golf trip to suit your group.
For suggested destinations see: Golf Destinations- The Monterey Peninsula
For further information on a tailored golf trip please enquire here: