Tucker’s Point Club as seen by the 368-yard par-four dogleg left 16th hole features lots of color, elevation changes, and beauty.
In all my travels I have seldom experienced a golf course with as many head-twisting panoramic views at Tucker’s Point. Yes, there are dozens of golf courses with wonderful ocean views, but you have all that and much more at Tucker’s Point.
First, beyond the different shades of blue azure waters that kiss Bermuda’s shores, there are the many shades of pastel buildings with bright white roofs that adorn this semi-tropical Atlantic island. Next, there is the hilly terrain that affords many spectacular vantage points and the immediate green hues as exhibited by the flowering shrubs, trees, grasses, and ferns that immediately surround each twisting ribbon of fairway.
Elevated tees, elevated greens, and water views all around are a characteristic of the charming Tucker’s Point Club.
Yes, Tucker’s Point is a very hilly track and even qualifies as a “billy-goat” course – strenuous to walk. It is also a more difficult layout than its generously wide fairways and modest 6,491 yards (from the tips) might suggest – particularly for the casual player. The reason is that the layout is subject to the Bermuda breezes and either you don’t have a level lie or if you do, you are hitting up to an elevated green or a few situated below you. Tucker’s Point definitely qualifies as a “local knowledge” one taking 2-3 rounds before you begin to gain the confidence and knowledge to typically score your best.
Five par-threes balance out three benign par-fives (all reachable for big hitters). The 215-yard 8th and the 225-yard 11th are easily the best 0ne-shotters on the course and even Bermuda. The 8th plays across a deep depression to a putting surface perched on the horizon with a gaping bunkering guarding the right front. It plays longer than the distance and par is a good score, and the view from the green is even better. The views of the ocean on the right side 225-yard 11th are just as spectacular as the hole is flatter and provides for a run-up approach.
I absolutely hate the term “signature hole” as applies to golf courses, but the short, drivable par-four 315-yard 17th (formerly the first hole when the course was known as Castle Harbour). You will want to take pictures here!
Tucker’s Point was originally built in 1932 by Charles Banks. He was an assistant to Charles Blair Macdonald who built the esteemed and adjacent Mid-Ocean Golf Club. His shaping, strategy, and bunkering was genius as it was for Banks – trademarks of the Golden Age of Golf Course Architecture. As the course was declining in the 1990s and in need of restoration, Roger Rulewich, the long-time assistant to Robert Trent Jones, Sr. was brought in to redesign it. Rulewich instead introduced the modern stylized flashed bunkering to the this old hilly layout. The redesign works nicely in spots especially with the holes already mentioned – and I can’t imagine a better looking hole than the 17th, but overall I feel a deep sense of chagrin that someone couldn’t have improved the layout in the Banks-Macdonald theme. For me that’s a fantastic opportunity lost. Tucker’s Point is a pleasant layout, but it could have been one of the World’s true destination vintage golf courses – like Mid-Ocean were someone to expound upon or re-establish the Banks virtues – especially given its abruptly hilly terrain. Its modern bunkering and green lines conflict with its quirky terrain that was left intact.
The most unique feature of the golf course is its remarkable water views in all directions. While water only comes into play as a lateral hazard on two holes, it is viewed on parts of 17 of them. Often you can gaze on several different bodies of water in opposite directions. Beyond the fun golf experience, you will enjoy friendly folks, excellent service, and attractive facilities. Tucker’s Point is a fun course worth your visit!
Below is a side view of the putting surface on the 185-yard 14th.