OMNI AMELIA ISLAND PLANTATION - Oak Marsh Course 904-261-6161
Florida Golf Course Review
Oak Marsh is a classic Pete Dye design and is one of two championship courses at Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort. Located just north of
Jacksonville, the resort features a variety of accommodations situated on 1350 acres adjacent to the Atlantic Ocean. Amenities at this AAA-Four Diamond
property include 23 clay tennis courts, a health and fitness center, full service spa, fine shops and dining options, heated outdoor and indoor pool areas
(with lap lanes) with Jacuzzis, a beach, conference and meeting facilities, seven miles of bike trails, plus fishing and sailing charters. For photos and
information on the resort and to log on to their website, visit our page for Amelia Island Plantation Resort by clicking here. Keep in mind - You Must Stay
Here To Play Here, as golf course play is available to guests and members only!
Oak Marsh Golf Club
The Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort features 36 holes of golf, including the Oaks Marsh and Ocean Links layouts. The two golf courses here are
serviced by one clubhouse with a shared practice area, including grass range plus putting and chipping greens. There is a restaurant (open for breakfast
and lunch) and lounge, with a full service pro shop featuring sportswear, golf accessories and equipment rentals. On course golfers will find that both
courses are well marked with 150-yard stakes, yardage blocks in the middle of the fairways, and sprinkler heads measured to the center of the green.
Each tee box also provides measurements to the center of the green. Daily information is provided for the different sets of rotating pin placements. As with
many of Florida's top courses, all three layouts at Omni Amelia Island Plantation feature golf carts with rain covers to protect clubs during inclement weather.
We were told beforehand to expect tight fairways and challenging green complexes on Oak Marsh. The moss-draped heritage oaks and serpentine salt
creeks are trademarks of Amelia Island, and they certainly add to the beauty and difficulty of the golf course. A variety of sand bunkers and numerous
bulkheaded putting surfaces are often surrounded by grassy swales and collection areas, making for some interesting up and downs - even when misses
are relatively near the green. The course has earned a 4 star rating from Golf Digest Places to Play, and was recently selected as the 16th best course in
the state of Florida by the Miami Herald. It also played host to the USGA Women's Mid Amatuer (1998), 1991 PGA Section Championship and 1992 Society of seniors Championship.
Four sets of tees on Oak Marsh intersperse the yardage evenly, with about 500 yards of distance between each set. The blue tees play to 6500 yards and
a 134 slope rating, and the whites are a good challenge and are recommended for the average golfer at 5999 yards/128 slope. The green tees measure
5568 /120 slope and the forward tees are 4983 yards with a 115 slope rating.
Hole number one is a simple par four that is best played from the left center of the fairway. Pay attention to the day's pin placement on this elevated two
-tiered green. The second is a tree lined par five that is rated as the course's # 1 handicap. The fairway slopes toward the pond about 125 out on the left,
making the right side the preferred area for the approach. The par four 3rd is just 317 yards from the tips (293 from the white tees) but presents a putting
complex that is well protected by traps and undulations/mounding. A soft, high arcing shot is necessary to get anywhere near the pin. The green is also
well guarded by bunkers on the par three 4th, and the trees on the right also help to create a demanding shot. On the par four 5th, the left side of the
fairway is the preferred landing area, as the fairway that slopes from left to right will guide any balls hit down the center to the right side, where the
approach will be blocked by trees. From the tee on six, the water hazard that comes into play past trees is not readily visible. The safe approach is to the
right side of the extremely challenging putting complex, bordered by the hazard and a bunker left, and trees on the right. The seventh is a pretty par three
that features a tee shot over a lake to a green defined by a wood retaining wall and serpentine sand bunker. There is bail out room short right for those
faint of heart. Number 8 is a beautiful par four, that demands a tee shot hit the center landing area about 80-130 out. The approach is a tight one - over
water to a deep green with the hazard in play along the left and behind. If too short on the drive or if along the right side, trees will block the second shot.
The front side finishes with a tough par five with a long salt marsh running the length of the hole along the right side. Do not miss the green on the right, as
the slope drops straight down towards the hazard.
The back side begins with a short par four with a figure 8 shaped green. If the pin is on the right side behind the water hazard, the approach can be quite
interesting. Eleven is another challenging five par that is best played as a three shot hole. The pond on the right comes into play about 120 out, and the
putting complex is fraught with bunkers and collection areas. Twelve is a par three to a tight green complex, and is followed by a tricky dogleg left par four.
This hole turns abruptly near the 100 yard marker, and demands an accurate wedge or short iron to reach the well protected putting surface. The fairway
narrows past the 150 stake on 14, with trees right and a waste bunker left running the length of the hole. On 15 a tee shot aimed at the left fairway bunker
(about 100 yards out) will leave the best approach. The par three 16th does not present much room for error, with trees on both sides and a marsh
intimidatingly close along the left. There is a little bit of room to miss on the right. The two closing holes bring the salt marsh directly into play. Number 17 is
especially tough as the hazard must be carried off the tee, and again on the second shot, for all except those tee shots played long and to the extreme
right of the fairway. The par five 18th will be played as a three shot hole for most golfers. The fairway s open off the tee, but getting as close as possible to
the marsh on the second shot is a priority. The preferred landing area is about 120 out on the left, to about 80 yards out along the far right. This will leave
a simple wedge or short iron and a decent scoring opportunity on the number two handicapped hole.
Oak Marsh will definitely test your shot making ability. A good short game will come in handy, and those adept with the lob wedge will certainly save some
strokes. This is an interesting course - with some extremely unique and beautiful scenery - great par threes and tough par fives. This is quite a different
layout compared with the Ocean Links which we played the previous day - an example of the variety one will encounter at Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort.
Visit our page for this course by clicking here.