The Biltmore Hotel, a national historic landmark established in 1926 and luxury hotel in the heart of Coral Gables, announced its plans to restore its 18-hole, 71-par golf course to the original style of the 1925 Donald Ross-designed Biltmore Golf Course. The 2.5-million-dollar project began July 5 when the golf course grounds closed, and is anticipated to reopen in December 2018.
As one of only nine Donald Ross-designed golf courses in the top-100 golf courses in the U.S., veteran golf course architect Brian Silva will oversee this restoration project, which will add new Bermuda grass on the existing tees, fairways and greens; incorporate new bunkers; enhance both the short-game practice as well as range areas; establish challenging signature holes; and extend the overall course length to over 7,100 yards, making it worthy of championship level play.
“The original 1925 Donald Ross course routing plan demonstrates a greater number of bunkers than now exists on the course. The additional new bunkers will provide more ‘movement’ to fairways that have more twists and turns as it works its way from the tee to the green into the hole. This movement has great impact on both aesthetics as well as the strategic playing interest of the golf course,” said Silva.
While the Biltmore golf course is currently home to the University of Miami Women’s golf team and the NCAA Hurricane invitational, in January 2018 it also became the headquarters for the Jim McLean Golf School and is being considered as a potential host site for a future PGA-Champions Tour event.
The Biltmore golf course has been the annual host site to the Junior Orange Bowl International Golf Championship for 54 consecutive years. The Championship event’s list of alumni includes Tiger Woods, Bubba Watson, Sergio Garcia, Rickie Fowler, Mark Calcavecchia, Jim Simon, Gary Koch, Lexi Thompson, Brooke Henderson, In-Bee Park, Grace Park, Christie Kerr, Kelli Booth and Michelle McGann.