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Florida Golf Course Review

Mystic Dunes Golf Club

Mystic Dunes is one of Florida's premier upscale golf facilities - featuring a layout designed by NBC golf analyst Gary Koch on 156 acres of natural, central Florida topography. Lush landscaping and country club conditioning greet players on this 7012 yard course, which provides tremendous variation on two distinctive nines. The western nine has the feel of a British links course, with elevation changes along native sand dunes, while the eastern nine is reminiscent of the classic Carolina courses with wetlands and oak forests. 

Mystic Dunes Golf Club
Mystic Dunes Golf Club

Mystic Dunes affords visitors the opportunity to enjoy a wonderful array of amenities - making a day of golf for business travelers or family vacationers a real treat. The spectacular 20,000 square foot clubhouse includes a spacious pro shop with golf equipment and accessories, and Taylor Made rentals. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are available at the bar and grill, and locker rooms with showers and towels are accessible for men and women guests. Wedding and banquet facilities that can host up to 300 people provide great incentives for booking special events. A 60,000 square foot practice facility includes a large grass range with target areas, practice bunkers, plus putting and chipping greens. . Lessons of all types from PGA staffed professionals are available.

Mystic Dunes Golf Club
Mystic Dunes Golf Club

Standard yardage marking systems are in place, including yardage blocks and sprinkler and tee markers heads measured to the center of the green, as well as pin placement information. Golfers of all abilities should be able to find a yardage that suits their game, choosing from tee areas that measure 7012 with a 137 slope rating, 6574/124, 5893/116 slope for men and 132 for women, 5332/111 slope for men and 124 for women and 4665 with a 118 slope rating that indicates a player friendly round for the average woman golfer. The blue tees have a number of long, tough par fours (5 that measure between 400 and 468 yards) making the white tee areas a good choice for the average male golfer. 

Mystic Dunes Golf Club

Mystic Dunes opens with a short par four, inviting a tee shot to the right side, away from the center pot bunker. From here, the approach is simple. Number 2 is a beautiful par three , with landscaping that includes a waterfall to the left and a babbling brook along the right. (first photo in this review). Go for the flag, as this putting surface is double tiered. The left center of the fairway provides a good landing spot on 3, and an approach hitting the right bank will trickle down to the green. The putting surface on the par four 4th is huge, with a similar bank along the right side guiding shots towards the hole. The sculpted waste area off the tee defines the par four 5th, which plays a whopping 496 yards from the tips and 453 yards from the blue tees. Be aware that a deep slope rests behind the green, making up and downs from that area a chore. Players will have to decide what to do with the deep pot bunker in the center of the fairway on 6 - drive over or lay up in front of... either way this is a good scoring hole. A pot bunker on the right off the tee and a waste area on that side from about 100 in are the only impediments to a good score on the par five 7th.  Pay attention to the pin placement though, as this green is also 2-tiered. The par three 8th is long but simple, making this 3-hole stretch the easiest on the course. You will have your work cut out to finish strong however, as the finishing hole on the front is a daunting par four. There is a waste bunker left off the tee, and another to the right that deepens as you near the tight green complex. At 485 yards from the tips, 460 from the blues and 423 from the white tees...par is great here.

Mystic Dunes Golf Club
Mystic Dunes Golf Club

The 10th hole doglegs right with a tee shot aimed just left of the tree near the cart path the recommended play. There is a huge waste area along the right, and the green here slopes front to back. Number eleven also bends to the right, and invites a tee shot just left of the tree line on the right side. It is easy to drive thru the fairway middle or left (from the white tees), so a left to right shot shape will come in handy here. At 508 from the tips and 468 from the blues, this is one tough par four! Twelve presents a rolling fairway, with a tee shot placed right of the left fairway bunker providing the best approach. Land on the short grass and this is a very score-able # 3 handicap. Stay out of the wood walled pot bunkers fronting the fairway and the 13th is also a good scoring hole. Most golfers should be able to clear the two left traps off the tee, but a lay up placed just left of the traps will also provide a clear shot at the green.

Mystic Dunes Golf Club
Mystic Dunes Golf Club

Number 14 demands a carry over a marsh to a wide (but not deep) putting surface, fronted by a bunker running the width of the green, with about 10 yards of grass behind. This par three is rated as the # 5 handicap. Lay up to the left center on the dogleg left par five 15th, and try to be right of the tree on the second shot. The approach on this snaking par five must be aimed at the flag, as a 7 foot swale separates the two tiers. The par three 16th is all carry over a marsh to a small green, with bail out room in the surrounding swales.  The par five 17th bananas to the left along an extremely rolling, undulating fairway, as it cuts through the beautiful Wyndham Palms Resort property. The approach is a bit uphill, but not as much as it appears from the fairway, as the slope rises then drops near the green. Golfers have a couple of choices on the score-able par four finishing hole. There is plenty of fairway left of the bunkers for a lay up, which leaves a simple approach, or big hitters can drive over the pot bunker facilitating a wedge approach and great birdie opportunity.

Mystic Dunes Golf Club

Mystic Dunes is upscale all the way - great facilities, interesting layout, friendly service and wonderful conditioning. You will impress clients, relatives and friends by bringing them here. Long hitters will delight in the long par fours, which require accuracy as well as skill. Players should choose their tees wisely. If the 5893 yards from the whites insults your ego, perhaps play the blues on all but the long par fours (# 11, 5 and 9 which play 468, 453 and 460) and the par three 8th, which is 222 from the blues and 199 from the whites. These adjustments will make the day more enjoyable, and give you a more reasonable chance to score your handicap. 

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