Golfers that haven’t played Shaftesbury recently may not recognize a layout that added 250,000+ square feet of waste bunkers, enhancing the course’s visual appeal and framing seven fairways. The 12th and 13th holes, which play parallel to each other, enjoyed the most dramatic changes as a shared waste bunker brought them closer together visually.
The natural inclination is to associate 250,000-square feet of sand with increased difficulty, but that was not the case at Shaftesbury Glen Golf Club. The waste bunkers are shallow, making them relatively easy to play out of, and the previously cavernous finger bunkers that surround many greens were softened and in some cases eliminated.
The end result is a course that’s more pleasing to the eye and the handicap.
“The waste bunkers they built have really added definition, which was something the golf course was lacking,” said Brian Noblin, a golf package specialist. “My favorite hole is easily No. 6. A 348-yard par 4, it was (previously) a nondescript hole with a big bunker on the right. They added a massive waste area on the left side, which is where everyone seems to hit the ball, and took out a massive greenside bunker on the right, which was almost impossible to get out of.”
But the enhancements went beyond aesthetics as Shaftesbury improved drainage throughout the course.
“We added drainage under all the waste areas, we rebuilt and put drainage inside of every one of our bunkers, and we also put extensive new drainage under fairways and the rough,” said Ryan McCarty, general manager at Shaftesbury Glen.
The improved drainage means carts are rarely confined to the path.
The success of the renovation work at Shaftesbury Glen made it, unquestionably, one of the biggest Myrtle Beach golf stories of the year.