Short courses that allow for non-intimidating, faster rounds of golf have become a hot commodity in recent years, led by facilities at some of the nation’s most prominent golf locations. Augusta National built its par-3 course, which hosts the annual Par 3 Contest (at least in years when there’s been no pandemic) more than 60 years ago. Pine Valley, Bandon Dunes, Big Cedar Lodge and others have followed suit, some even sporting catchy nicknames such as The Cradle at Pinehurst, the Bad Little 9 in Scottsdale, Ariz., The Gimme at The Concession Club in Bradenton, Fla., and The Hay at Pebble Beach.
This week, the most recent, the Staple Course, will be unveiled at PGA National Resort and Spa, in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. The Andy Staples-designed nine-hole, par-3 course has holes ranging in length from 48 to 130 yards and is built on the former 1st and 18th holes at the property’s Squire course. The layout, set up in a figure-eight configuration, features crossing holes at Nos. 2-3 and 7-8 to allow for more connection to other golfers, including seating areas with fire pits and café and bar areas.
“Our goal for the Staple Course was to combine classic course architecture attributes with a contemporary reimagined approach by highlighting playability, a quicker pace of play, and simply creating an enjoyable golf experience for all,” Staples said. “We think guests are going to love The Staple Course so much they’ll want to play it multiple times in the same day.”
Staples’ new 18-hole Match Course is scheduled to open at PGA National later this summer as part of a $100 million capital revitalization effort at the property.