Tiger Woods’ tournament results are a work in progress, but his design career is red hot. Tiger Woods Design and Beacon Land Development broke ground this past week on Woods’ latest venture into golf course architecture, the private Bluejack National Golf Club in Montgomery, Tex., outside of Houston. Following the expected opening of Diamante’s El Cardonal course this December in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, Woods will come right back with Bluejack, with a debut possibly as early as fall 2015.
Woods’ design will be a brand new layout atop a long-closed course called Blaketree National, which opened in 2001 and pretty much shut down in 2005. The original course was the private playground of eccentric oil tycoon Thomas W. Blake who enlisted Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw to design the course, but wound up finishing it himself. Blake died in 2001, shortly before the course opened.
Among the new course’s highlights will be Tour-quality practice areas, a unique short-game course called “The Playgrounds” and a design that will feature just one height of grass, which will allow for contour and the ground game to play integral roles.
Most enticing is the property itself, which is unusual for the Houston area, with mature trees, natural water hazards and elevation changes that call to mind Augusta National. Given the success Woods has enjoyed at that course in his career, it won’t be surprising if he finds real inspiration in crafting his newest creation. The project has also lined up Mark O'Meara, who is featured in the local report aboce.
The centerpiece of a 755-acre plot, with 400 residences and many other amenities expected, Bluejack National has begun clearing and grading the practice facility, “The Playgrounds” and the front nine. For quantity, Woods isn’t in Donald Ross’ league just yet, but by today’s standards, his design practice is thriving.