Monday, April 14, 2014

Hilton Head Island's Palmetto Dunes: Keeping Up with the Joneses

Robert Trent Jones, Sr., helped make a name for himself at Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort on Hilton Head Island

(HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C.) — Robert Trent Jones, Sr., is regarded as among the most historically significant golf architects of the 20th century. Some of the sport’s historians have even argued that the entire fabric of golf in America — nay the world — is embodied in his extraordinary 70-year career in golf course design.

Two upcoming events will soon bring Trent Jones back in the golfing spotlight once again.

One is the release of New York Times bestselling author and internationally distinguished historian James R. Hansen’s definitive, monumental account of the life of Trent Jones in his new biography, “A Difficult Par: Robert Trent Jones Sr. and the Making of Modern Golf” (Gotham Books, May 13, 2014, Hardcover, eBook).

In his book, Hansen details the compelling life story of the man behind many of the defining forms, shapes, and challenges of the modern golf course. Between 1930 and 2000, Jones designed or redesigned a staggering number of golf courses — more than 400 — spread over 43 U.S. states and 27 other nations, including such instantly recognizable courses as Mauna Kea in Hawaii, Spyglass Hill in California, Bellerive in Missouri, Hazeltine in Minneapolis, and Ballybunion (New Course) in Ireland.

The other is the annual return of the PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage to Hilton Head Island.

Hilton Head was one of the first burgeoning golf destinations to which the acclaimed architect attached his name in 1969, when he designed the famed Robert Trent Jones Course at the Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort.  It was the resort’s first golf course and famously winds all the way out to the Atlantic Ocean, which appears into view on holes 9 and 10.

In the spirit of RBC Heritage Week, Palmetto Dunes will host a variety of events at its Robert Trent Jones Golf Course. On Monday, April 14 there will be a PING Golf Fitting Day at the driving range from 9 am to 1 pm (by appointment only, 843-686-9137). Then, former PGA Tour professional John Maginnes will air his “Maginnes On Tap” Radio Show live on XM 93/Sirius 208 from 5 pm to 7 pm. On Tuesday, April 15 there will be a TaylorMade Golf Fitting Day at the driving range from 10 am to 2 pm, plus an afternoon Nike Golf Experience and Demo Day. On Wednesday, April 16 there will be a COBRA Golf Demo Day from 10 am to 2 pm, along with an ECCO Comfort Tech Van from 11 am to 3 pm.

“It’s an electric week around here,” said Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort Director of Golf Clark Sinclair. “Our guests and residents are constantly coming and going back and forth to the [RBC Heritage]. The tournament helps create an exciting buzz throughout the resort.”  

It is a synergy that dates back to the mid-1960s, when a group of physicians and executives from Greenwood, S.C., entered into an innovative business venture with Charles Fraser. For $1,000 an acre, the group bought a 2,000-acre mid-island property that would become Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort.

This week, those seeking a break from the tournament traffic on the south end of Hilton Head Island can enjoy Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort’s wide variety of luxurious, mid-island accommodations from which to choose along with its renowned trio of golf course designs by Robert Trent Jones, Arthur Hills and George Fazio.

For those seeking resort activities other than golf, the resort also features an award-winning tennis center, an 11-mile inland salt-water lagoon system for kayaking and fishing, and Hilton Head Outfitters for bike rentals, canoes, kayaks, fishing and much more. The Mediterranean-style Shelter Cove Harbour deep-water marina, located right across from Palmetto Dunes, features waterfront shopping and dining and a wide variety of charters, including nature cruises, dolphin tours, sport crabbing and fishing.

Suffice to say this week, while golf fans around the world are thinking about beautiful Hilton Head Island and its rich heritage in the game — and golf course architect Robert Trent Jones Sr. — they should think no further than Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort.

For more information, call 877-567-6513 or visit

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