Location: Port St. Lucie, Fla.
Course architect: Tom Fazio
Tee — Yardage | Rating / Slope:
Medal — 7,000 | 74.1 / 135
Tournament — 6,647 | 72.1 / 131
Standard — 6,224 | 69.7 / 128
Combo — 5,896 | 68.2 / 124
Middle — 5,714 | 67.7 / 116
Forward — 5,038 | 65.1 / 113
Middle — 5,714 | 73.4 / 128
Forward — 5,038 | 70.4 / 122
Saturday morning green fee: $$$ ($139, January-April; $99, November-December; $69, May-October. Prices are the same each day of the week)
Caddie service: No
Walker friendly: No
Fairways: Celebration Bermudagrass
Greens: TifEagle Bermudagrass
Starter: The Ryder, one of three recently renovated courses at PGA Golf Club, offers a quality resort-style experience in a semi-private setting. Visitors to many Florida courses might leave struggling to recall more than a few holes in a state with too many similar layouts on relatively flat terrain. The variety in the routing at the Ryder Course should leave a lasting impression.
Play because …: The Ryder unfurls from tee to green in a flowing expanse of fairway, with run-up options to counter the well-bunkered green complexes. From the standard tees, the brutish ninth hole, at 406 yards, is the only par 4 that plays longer than 400. Six of the 10 par 4s play less than 375 from the middle tees, so the mid-handicapper shouldn’t feel bludgeoned at the end of the round.
Takeaway: The TifEagle Bermudagrass rolled at a firm-and-fast pace during my visit, and the undulations and run-offs present countless hole locations. This is a fun, highly playable course with premier conditions.
RATINGS [1 to 10 scale, 10 being the highest]
Food | beverage: 8.0
Pro shop: 9.0
Course difficulty: 8.0
Pace of play: 7.0
THE COURSE | Scorecard
Best par 3: No. 7 (239 | 206 | 195 | 154 | 154 | 123 yards)
As the course’s 9-handicap hole, this par 3 punches above its weight. From the middle (e.g., “standard”) tees, it plays 195. Despite the water and sand guarding the right side, bailout options beckon short and left, so don’t feel intimidated.
Best par 4: No. 14 (389 | 372 | 354 | 354 | 293 | 265 yards)
It’s a fun, short hole – 354 from the middle markers – that doglegs left and offers plenty of teeing options to set up a short-iron approach.
Best par 5: No. 4 (484 | 456 | 420 | 420 | 416 | 336 yards)
The classic risk-reward quandary looms on the tee of this sweeping dogleg right: how much of the water on the right should be carried? That sets up the second shot, which for long players should present an early birdie chance. For the rest of us, the third-shot wedge is the way to go.