Two’s good company, but three still won’t feel crowded at Streamsong Resort, which announced today that it has tapped Gil Hanse to design a third course on its sprawling central Florida property.
Opened in 2013, Streamsong already sports a pair of acclaimed layouts, the Blue and Red Courses, designed by Tom Doak and the Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw duo respectively.
Both tracks wind through a dramatic landscape marked by heaving dunes that phosphate mining left behind. Walker-friendly, with few forced carries and no homes in sight, the layouts stand in architectural contrast to golf-as-usual in Florida, a state better known for flat, bomb-and-gauge designs.
The Red Course ranks 12th on Golf Magazine’s list of Top 100 Course You Can Play, and the Blue Course sits just four places below it at No. 16.
In hiring Hanse, Streamsong has enlisted one of the busiest men in the business. Along with Castle Stuart in Scotland and the renovated Blue Monster course at Doral, Hanse’s recent design credits include the Olympic Golf Course in Rio de Janeiro. He is also in line to build a sixth Oregon course for Mike Keiser, four miles south of Keiser’s Bandon Dunes Resort, though a launch date for that project has not been set.
At Streamsong, a 16,000-acre property 90 minutes from Orlando and 60 minutes from Tampa, Hanse should have plenty of space to work with. Unlike the Red and Blue Courses, which stretch side by side and at times intermingle, Hanse’s design -- the Black Course -- will sit on its own, southeast of its siblings. According to Hanse, that stand-alone location will help lend the layout an expansive sense of scale.
“It’s similar to the other sites in that it’s sand-based, with dunes and wild-looking native grasses,” Hanse said. “But I think it’s going to feel wider and broader, with longer flowing ridges as opposed to more abrupt undulations.”
Though Hanse has yet to finalize his blueprint for the Black Course, he said he was especially excited about dunes-strewn section of the site known as The Glove, which calls to mind just that when viewed from the air.
“It has a ton of possibilities,” Hanse said. “We should be able to do something pretty cool and linksy-feeling there.”
Construction on the Black Course is set to begin this summer, with completion expected in the fall of 2017.