(DELRAY BEACH, Fla.) - The Hamlet Country Club has completed a $10 million renovation to prepare the facility for its current members and a whole new generation of baby boomers. The modern restoration includes the exterior and interior of the 38,000 square foot Clubhouse.
The charm of the clubhouse and the Hamlet's location has long made it a popular choice for events, but inquiries have increased based on the luxurious facelift. The remodel created a variety of impressive banquet rooms to meet the catering needs of members, corporate clients and party planners. The ballroom seats up to 300 for events. The contemporary Balinese interior fuses elegance with innovative "Green" aspects like bamboo cabinetry, sisal and cypress wood ceilings, cork wall treatments to bamboo tiles and a lighted recycled coca-cola bottle glass bar all created by Sam Rosenberg Design of Palm Beach.
Repairs and replacement to all aspects of the private club spanned a twelve-month period. The Hamlet has a reputation for excellence in its food and beverage service, its Tennis and Fitness Centers and its well-manicured golf course, considered among the finest in South Florida.
Along with the extensive renovations to the Clubhouse, the Hamlet also renovated its golf course to bring it into the 21st Century with "Green" attributes as well. After researching several varieties of grass, the Club elected to convert the tee areas to Celebration Bermuda. Celebration is a very heat tolerant grass and allows for lower mowing heights. An earth friendly grass, Celebration requires less fertilization and fewer chemicals, which also equates to less water. So the course will always be in the green, the Hamlet converted to a reclaimed water system two years ago.
Architect Ian Scott-Taylor conducted an in-depth study on the restoration of the golf course, one of the flagship courses designed and built by American golf architect great, "Gentleman Joe Lee." Mr. Lee designed and renovated more than 250 courses throughout the U.S. during his career. Noted for considering all levels of players, Mr. Lee designed the 18-hole regulation golf course at the Hamlet Country Club in 1972 and it opened for play in 1973.
Over the years, renovations and the impact of repeated hurricanes have resulted in many holes taking a different shape than Mr. Lee's original vision. The Hamlet's Green Committee contracted with Mr. Scott-Taylor to study each of the 18 holes and the course as a whole. Chair Carol Novarro said, "We knew we had a match with Ian Scott-Taylor when he walked the course and gave us feedback on each hole, which was a match to Joe Lee's suggestions that he gave us before his death in 2002."
According to Mr. Scott-Taylor, "I was delighted to be working on a course designed by Joe Lee. His trademark design elements - undulating greens, strategically located visible hazards and unique bunkering - were all there. We just needed to update them."
Mr. Scott-Taylor continued, "I'm restoring 'the Hamlet' to his vision. Next to Cog Hill, the Hamlet embodies all of Joe's little tricks and philosophies, every visit is a historian's dream, I just feel Joe's keeping an eye to make sure I get it right."
Alan Goldstein, Club President, concludes, "It has been very rewarding to see the transformation of the property from what it was to now. The members are very complimentary of the changes, and they take pride in what The Hamlet has become."