Sprawling oak trees line both sides of the road, a centuries-old welcome to Heritage Club – one of Myrtle Beach’s best golf courses. The magnitude of the trees immediately sets the tone for one of Myrtle Beach’s most memorable rounds of golf, tying players to the property’s rich history.
There are hundreds of oak trees at Heritage, but the line that guides players to the clubhouse is the most impressive, and they aren’t there by happenstance.
More than 200 years ago, the rows of trees were planted to divide the road leading to the original plantation home from the rest of the property.
From the entrance through the peninsula green on No. 18, Heritage is one of the Myrtle Beach area’s prettiest layouts and it has an abundance of character.
The property used to be home to one of the world’s most productive rice and indigo plantations; the final resting place of its owner, Mr. Pawley (after whom Pawleys Island was named), is located just off the fourth hole.
But a course doesn’t earn the ranking of No. 33 on Golf Digest’s list of America’s 100 Greatest Public Courses on the strength of beauty and character alone. Heritage Club is one of designer Dan Maples’ finest works.
The Pawleys Island course has length at 7,118 yards from the gold tees (6,656 yards blue tees/6,310 yards white tees), but it’s a layout that favors shot makers over raw power.
Precision off the tee is vital because Heritage is a second-shot golf course, due in large part to some of the Grand Strand’s largest and most undulating greens. This South Strand gem has three greens that are more than 50 yards deep, so merely hitting the putting surface often isn’t enough. Players need to be in the right spot.
The greens at Heritage, which opened in 1986, are typically bunkered but the approaches are open, giving the players the option to play the bump-and-run, a lost art on many modern courses. The open approach areas also provide high handicappers more margin for error.
Water comes into play on 11 holes, most memorably No. 13 and No. 18, the layout’s two peninsula greens.
Maples’ work at Heritage is creative throughout, presenting choices and opportunity. But along with the freedom comes risk. For example, the dual fairway is a relatively common architectural trait, but at Heritage, Maples gives players two distinct choices on the par-5 second hole.
After the drive, which shouldn’t go more than 260 yards, players must make a choice. The shorter, left fairway requires an approach over four par-killing bunkers and a green that runs from front to back.
The right fairway plays a little longer and the approach requires a carry over the lake that separates the fairways, but the bunkers don’t come into play and players have more green to work with.
All in all, Heritage is a great golf course. No matter how you are playing, it’s impossible not to enjoy the course’s Lowcountry setting. The oak trees draped in Spanish moss and the marsh have helped created a natural environment that is a stunning home for a golf course.
Do you want to add this Myrtle Beach gem to your next golf trip? If so, we recommend considering the Legends Golf Package, which features a number of different options, including 4 night/3 round options that include free daily breakfast, lunch and 2 beers! To learn more about this or any of our other packages, call 800.422.1587.