Title: Exploring Rees Jones’ First Solo Design: The Unmatched Charm of Arcadian Shores
Myrtle Beach, often referred to as the Golf Capital of the world, is synonymous with world-class golf courses. However, one that particularly stands out in this plethora of golfing marvels is Arcadian Shores — a true gem nestled between the Intracoastal Waterway and the Atlantic Ocean. This captivating course is the first solo design of Rees Jones, the renowned golf course architect also known as “The Open Doctor.”
Arcadian Shores, which opened in 1974, immediately distinguished itself for its innovative design and flawless integration with the local natural landscape. Jones proved his innate talent with this debut, setting a precedent for his future works that would later earn him accolades and respect in the golfing world. It’s no surprise that Arcadian Shores remains one of the most sought-after golfing destinations in Myrtle Beach, over four decades since its inception.
The course itself stretches over 6,857 yards, offering a par-72 layout that beautifully marries high-risk shots with high-reward outcomes, embodying Jones’ philosophy of providing “fair and balanced” courses. Jones took the naturally diverse landscapes surrounding Myrtle Beach and used them to their fullest potential, crafting a course that features both large man-made lakes and dense acres of towering pines and oaks. No two holes are similar, each taking on its own unique persona, inviting golfers to approach every stroke with thoughtful strategy.
Arcadian Shores’ signature holes — the par-3, 2nd, and the par-4, 13th — encapsulate the transformative essence of Jones’ design. The 2nd hole features a lake guarding the green and requires an accurate tee shot over water, presenting challenges for golfers of all levels. The 13th hole, on the other hand, offers a strategic dogleg right fairway, flanked by water on the right, requiring a well-plotted approach to reach the subtly elevated green.
Yet, the course is not just about challenges and precision. Arcadian Shores is astonishingly beautiful, effortlessly merging modern design with raw natural beauty. The lush greens and blues form a vivid tapestry, enhanced by frequent visits from local wildlife. Turkeys, waterfowl, and deer are common sights at Arcadian Shores, making each golfing session a serene interaction with nature.
In addition to its mesmerizing aesthetics and dynamic design, Arcadian Shores also excels in its facilities and services. The club underwent significant renovations in 2017, with Rees Jones himself returning to oversee the updates. Today, the clubhouse offers state-of-the-art amenities that cater to the modern golfer. A new pro shop, a modernized grill area, and updated practice facilities including a driving range and a short game area are among the numerous factors that elevate the golfing experience at Arcadian Shores.
Moreover, the course has a well-deserved reputation for hospitality and professionalism, with a knowledgeable and amiable staff that ensures each golfer feels welcome and well-looked after. Whether you’re a seasoned golfer looking to test your skill or a novice seeking an immersive start in golf, the helpful staff members at Arcadian Shores are always willing to assist you.
It takes a journey across the rolling greens, shimmering waters, and sprawling fairways of Arcadian Shores to fully appreciate the genius of Rees Jones’ inaugural solo design. More than just a golf course, it is a celebration of the game in its purest form — transcending the boundaries of sport to find a connection with the environment and reminding us why we fell in love with golf in the first place.
Indeed, Rees Jones’ Arcadian Shores is not just a landmark in Myrtle Beach’s vibrant golfing scene but a testament to his unique talent and the lasting impact of effective, innovative design. For those seeking a slice of golfing heaven, Arcadian Shores invites you to explore and embrace the compelling charisma of Myrtle Beach’s golf heritage.