Updated: Jun 25, 2021
We went to Nashville Tennessee last week for a business trip. Part of that business included playing golf and evaluating courses in another state. The idea was to see how different courses in the Nashville area and see if they do anything different that may help us grow golf in Louisiana. Over a three-day weekend, we played four rounds of golf and three very different properties. We enjoyed every golf course although we had some issues at certain properties.
The first course we played on Friday, June 18th, was The Legacy Golf Course. We found a deal for around $50 that also included lunch. The lunch was really just a hot dog, chips, and a drink but that was good enough. The course was in excellent shape with a good definition between the fairway and the two-inch rough. Especially the bent grass greens. The only issue of the day on this golf course was many of the tee boxes were not level. We don't mean just sloped, it had areas where one foot would be higher than the other while the ball was below your feet. This is an issue we found out later is something the club is aware of and working on. We learned a lot about the course from members of the club. While we were eating lunch after we finished our round we were invited to play in a scramble charity event as a team needed another two golfers. We agreed and had a great time. Everyone we met that day at The Legacy Golf Course was great. From the golf staff, the food and beverage staff, and every member we interacted with just could not have been nicer. They have invited us back with an open-ended invitation. Overall this course gets an 8 out of 10.
Saturday's round was at a course we really wanted to play as it has a reputation of being one of the top courses in all of Tenessee. The course was Gaylord Springs Golf Links. The course conditions definitely lived up to that reputation. The greens were very smooth and very fast. They were also firm while still be receptive to shots. There was not much rough here but what there was did make you think before selecting a club. Again we got paired up with a twosome that was very friendly and fun to play golf with. From an aesthetics and playability standpoint, this course was pristine. There is also a great practice facility here. Full driving range, two putting greens, and a bunker and chipping green although range balls were not included. There is also a golf academy there for lessons. As good as many things were however there was plenty this golf course did wrong. The greeting in the golf shop was not what you would expect from a resort course. It was not mean in any way it just did not feel welcoming. A minor thing we could deal with. What was a bigger problem was actually while we were playing. First, let me just say the cart girl we had was great. We saw her three times in our first 9-holes which is the back-9 of the golf course. On our back-9 however, we only saw the beverage cart one time, and when we did (on the 3rd hole) it was taking a shortcut to another hole and skipped our group. We never saw that cart again the rest of the day. To add to that the water fountain at the resthouse was broken and every cooler on the course was empty. That is also not it. Two times while attempting to hit a shot the on course the marshalls did not stop their carts. One while hitting a chip shot the marshall popped over a bridge while talking on the radio and drove right past our group without stopping or any acknowledgment he was disturbing our shots. The second time when hitting a drive on a hole the marshall drove around a green and right in front of us on the tee box while I was mid-swing. This is very unacceptable behavior especially from a marshall that should know better. Also, everything mentioned is things that should not happen at a high-end resort golf course with a green fee of just under $100. I know many would ask, did you go say something? No. After the bland "what do you want" type of greeting, we decided the staff probably could care less. Everything ended up ruining the day to an extent for all four of us. Oh and one more thing they completely lost our tab we had for drinks from the beverage cart. Overall the course gets a 7 due to the issues we experienced but still having near-perfect conditions.
On the last day, we went to Hermitage Golf Course. We heard good things and figured let's check it out. They have two golf courses. One course the General's Retreat with bermuda grass greens and the other the President's Reserve with bent grass greens. This was another property we were treated great. We were immediately greeted not only with smiles but with a level of pride. The immediate service of, "can we get you anything" and pointing us in the direction of everything was what you'd expect at the course the day before and not as much money. The range balls were included and they have a full range, large putting green, a bunker, and chipping green as well as a short game area for shots up to 50-yards. The starter gave us a full rundown of where everything was again, what the rules for the day were with carts on path for two holes, and we would get a 10-min call to go to the first tee. They use an intercom to call groups to the tee. The only way this golf course screwed up was to not tell us they recently aerified the golf course we were playing. We played the General's Retreat and did not know anything until reaching the first green and seeing the holes in the green. We went from high expectations after how we were greeted to feeling disappointed. The entire golf course was in pretty good shape considering the holes everywhere and had we known ahead of time it would not have been a problem. Not telling us was the thing here that bothered us the most. The other twosome we were paired up with was also was not told so it wasn't like they just forgot to tell us. We could hear others on the course also making comments about not being told. Mostly due to how we were treated when we got there and how the beverage cart service treated us, this golf course gets a 7 out of 10 even with the aerified greens. Due to the conditions, we didn't take but two pictures here.
We learned a lot from these three very different properties. Although golf course conditions are a top priority we have to make sure golf courses in Louisiana, especially in the New Orleans area, do not make the same mistakes we experienced. If more golf courses treated golfers with a friendly welcoming attitude like The Legacy Golf Course and its members treated us, golf would be in a good place and golfers would go play a wider variety of courses. Our goal is to take this knowledge, as well as the knowledge we have of golf from Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida, and help golf courses become the best they can be and across the state of Louisiana.