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Colleton River Plantation Club

On perhaps the finest setting in the Lowcountry, this retreat also has two of its best courses and a reputation as one of the country’s premier clubs


t’s been called the finest piece of land any-

satisfy the most avid of golfers. That the two sit in a

where in the Lowcountry. In a region cele-

single community is remarkable in and of itself.

brated for its natural beauty, that is praise

Jack Nicklaus said his creation here reminds him of

of the highest kind. Bounded by water on

Cypress Point. It’s an assessment easily agreed to, espe-

three sides and bordered by a 1,200-acre

cially when you catch a stunning sunset over the water

ABOVE: Members enjoy sunset views on the community’s namesake river. BELOW: With water bordering Colleton on three sides, kayaking is a popular pastime with residents.

nature preserve, Colleton River Plantation Club’s setting is a spectacular backdrop for one of the country’s premier private golf communities. Located just two miles from Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, Colleton River buffers itself from the bustle of the outside world with a soothing, forest-lined four-mile drive from its front gate to the clubhouse. It’s a drive that lets members know they have arrived. If you moved here only for the golf, the crown jewel of the community, you could be happy for the rest of your life. Either of the two 18-hole courses would




ored both in its “Top 100 Courses in the U.S.” list. But that debate may have to be settled over cocktails at the Halfway Café. The facts show member play is split right down the middle. Although they take their golf seriously, members have formed many golf groups that welcome every handicap level. And the Borland Par-3 course, a walking ninehole layout, is the perfect place for every age and skill. ABOVE: Deepwater docks give members access to waterways and the Atlantic. INSET: Members can participate in a wide range of clubs and classes. 2


along the closing holes. While the Nicklaus course

While golf is what initially attracted members from

winds through open spaces, forest and marsh before

around the country, as the community has matured its

finishing at the river, the Pete Dye course is true links-

diverse membership has created a wide variety of in-

style golf. Dye famously said when he finished, “This is

terests. Today, about 25 percent of residents move here

the best course I have ever built.”

not for the golf, but for the lifestyle beyond it. All the

Which of the two is the better? Both received rave

amenities you would expect from one of the country’s

reviews when they opened, and Golf Magazine hon-

top private country clubs can be found here: two clubSPRING 2010

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houses, an active tennis community, miles of walking and biking trails, a health and fitness center, and an aquatic center. It’s what is beyond the expected that sets Colleton River apart. These extras include a community dock with deepwater access, excellent fishing in the Colleton River, the marsh flats and the many stocked ponds, and a talented culinary team serving everything from highend wine dinners to Southern comfort food. Add to that a business center, with everything needed to run a first-class meeting, and spacious cottages within walking distance of the clubhouses. Just outside the gate, Hilton Head’s beaches are minutes away, as are major medical facilities, shopping, universities, cultural events and historic destina-

More than 100 members are involved in committees

tions. Still, in this true golf-cart community, you will

that steer this member-owned community. It’s been a

put more miles on your cart than your car.

job well done as they have no unfunded debt and $71

Colleton River has collected some of the most presti-

million in assets on the balance sheet. They are justifi-

gious awards that private clubs can attain, including the

ably proud that they kept members’ dues flat this past

highly regarded Platinum Club Status, an honor it has

year without cutting any corners.

held since 2006. The community was also ranked with-

In this low-density community (there are only 705

in the top 15 among the country’s “Top Residential Golf

homesites on 1,500 acres), the homes reflect the

Communities” and one of the top two in South Carolina.

warmth and comfort of Lowcountry elegance through

Much of the success can be attributed to Colleton River’s board and membership who have stayed true to the vision of being one of the finest communities in the country. But the people are what make

many architectural styles and a

Nicklaus Course PAR: 72 YARDAGE: 7,151 YEAR FOUNDED: 1991 ARCHITECT: Jack Nicklaus

Colleton so special. The membership is warm, friendly, gracious and caring. They welcome new members and do a tremendous amount of charity work, including funding and building five Habitat for Humanity homes. SPRING 2010

ABOVE: A big bunker in front guards the risk-reward 345-yard 14th on the Dye. ABOVE LEFT: Exceptional homesites with river, marsh and golf views are still available.

wide range of sizes, from just under 3,000 square feet up to 10,000. While most communities sell out their best homesites first, choice sites have been released slowly here. That means it’s not too late; some of the

Dye Course PAR: 72 YARDAGE: 7,301 YEAR FOUNDED: 1998 ARCHITECT: Pete Dye

best are still available. A great way to discover Colleton is to book a Member Experience Weekend that lets you lodge and dine in the community, play both courses and meet members.

COLLETON RIVER PLANTATION CLUB 60 Colleton River Drive Bluffton, SC 29910 843.836.4400



COLLETON RIVER PLANTATION CLUB 60 Colleton River Drive Bluffton, SC 29910 843.836.4400

The dunes-laden finishing holes of the Nicklaus course are stunning and challenging.

Colleton River_LinksLiving SPring 2010  

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