Below, you’ll find a list of courses near Novi, MI.
There are 96 courses within a 15-mile radius of Novi,
67 of which are public courses and 29 are private courses.
There are 67 18-hole courses and 24 nine-hole layouts.
The above has been curated through Golf Digest’s Places to Play course database,
where we have collected star ratings and reviews from our 1,900 course-ranking panelists.
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Donald Ross felt his 1918 design was out-of-date for the 1951 U.S. Open and was prepared to remodel it. Sadly, he died in 1948, so Robert Trent Jones got the job. His rebunkering was overshadowed by ankle-deep rough, and after Ben Hogan closed with a 67, one of only two rounds under par 70 all week, to win his second consecutive Open, he complained that Jones had created a Frankenstein. Sixty-plus years later, Oakland Hills is even longer, but its bite wasn’t severe when it hosted the 2016 U.S. Amateur. In 2019, the South course closed as Gil Hanse and his team significantly renovated the course with the intention of removing the Jones influences and restoring its Ross feel. They did that by expanding greens to recapture what are some of Ross's best contours, removed trees to show off the rolling landscape and shifted bunkers back to where Ross, not RTJ, placed them. The course re-opened in Spring 2021, and though a crippling fire destroyed the club's iconic clubhouse, the USGA delivered some kind news to the club, bringing the 2034 and 2051 U.S. Opens to Oakland Hills—as well as a number of upcoming USGA championships.
Franklin Hills’ eminent neighbors Oakland Hills, Bloomfield Hills, and Birmingham Country Club loom large, yet the course rises to their level. Opened in 1927, this is a very private club, and the Albert Kahn clubhouse adds a touch of elegance. Donald Ross’s greens rank with some of his best with plenty of slope and undulation, and the design is refreshingly pure for not having been tampered with through the decades. The par threes are striking in their variety of length, green setting and shot requirements, and the memorable 301-yard “Volcano” hole at 13 requires just a short iron or wedge to a 3000 square foot green sitting 30 above the fairway, but it is the scariest 75 yards in Detroit.
Overshadowed by the South course, which has hosted over a dozen major championships, the Donald Ross designed North course shares many features with The Monster, albeit more subtle. The greens have plenty of movement and are often guarded by deep bunkers, as they are on the South. The back nine has a nice variety of holes, including the reachable par-5 12th with a green surrounded by a railroad tie-lined water hazard, the drivable par-4 15th, and the long par-4 17th, with a dramatically tumbling fairway. The course was used alongside the South during stroke play at the 2016 U.S. Amateur.
From Golf Digest Architecture Editor emeritus Ron Whitten:As it exists today, I consider Orchard Lake Country Club to be a classic 1926 Hugh Alison design. But in the beginning, it was anything but that.For one thing, back in the 1920s, landscape architect Lynn Lavis, a Syracuse graduate associated with the British design firm of H.S. Colt and C.H. Alison, and golf course contractor William Connellan (who also had a hand in designing several courses in Michigan), had a devil of a time building the course. When they staked out the layout according to Alison's plan, the 10th and 18th fairways were under 18 inches of water that had seeped over from an adjacent tamarack swamp.They pumped and pumped and installed thousands of feet of tile drains to reclaim some dry land. Then another issue was encountered with the swamp in which the 17th green was to be built. Alison had planned the hole to be a par-5 with an island green, but after dumping tons upon tons of soil into the swamp to form a green pad, the proposed green sank into the morass. So the 17th hole became a par 4, and I'm not certain Alison knew about that in advance.On paper, the routing looks rigid, with mostly parallel holes running east or west on both nines and only one cluster of holes on the back nine playing north or south. But on the ground, the layout works wonderfully well because of the rumpled topography of the property, with holes sliding up and over slopes in a diagonal fashion.In the 1950s, Indiana architect Bill Diddel rebuilt a third of the greens, and in the 1980s Arthur Hills redesigned some holes. It wasn't until the early 2000s that an architect showed much interest in what Alison had originally intended for Orchard Lake. Keith Foster (a former Hills associate) consulted for a decade, recommending removal of lots and lots of trees that had been planted over half a century. That process exposed some gorgeous landforms, both natural glacial hills and most likely a few that were created by Lavis and Connellan. Vast patches of tall native grasses now replace the old forests, and add to the timeless look of the course.Foster also expanded the parameters of many greens, using old aerial photographs to determine what corner pin placements had been lost over the decades. And since Foster felt Alison had a rather mundane bunker style—big kidney-bean shapes of sand—he rebuilt them all in a different style and added new ones, recessing them into hillsides below the levels of fairways and greens to create a distinctive look to the course.He also prescribed extensive drainage that has helped dry out the course, which is adjacent to the namesake Orchard Lake but doesn't intersect it on any hole. The result is that its bentgrass fairways and greens play tight and firm, the ideal surface for golf.Foster's work started in 2002 and was completed in 2012. It wasn't exactly a restoration; it was more a renovation that has re-energized Orchard Lake while paying tribute to Alison's original concepts.
Meadowbrook's first six holes were designed by Willie Park, Jr. in 1916. Harry Collis and Jack Daray expanded the course to 18 holes in the 1920s, and Donald Ross later remodeled it. In 2017, architect Andy Staples re-envisioned the holes as pure Willie Park expressions, using Park's Huntercomb Golf Club in the U.K. as inspiration. The result is a brash interprettion of early 19th century architecture with square greens, geometric green contour and steep-faced bunkers on a rolling meadow property spotted here and there with stands of trees.
The Alister MacKenzie-designed course at the University of Michigan is ranked in the top five of Golf Digest’s top collegiate courses in America, and the university also owns Radrick Farms, a Pete and Alice Dye design, also a member of our Greatest College Courses list. Radrick Farms is Dye in his gentlest form. The course is one of Dye’s earliest designs and lacks many of the penal features that he used in his most famous layouts. Some bunkers have the steep faces Dye would use more in his later designs but many are quite forgiving. The course is built on a former gravel mine, giving the terrain significant elevation change of up to 100 feet across the property. Like the university’s MacKenzie design, Radrick Farms is semi-private and open to those with an affiliation to the university.
Birmingham Country Club in the suburbs of northeast Detroit sits at the center of one of the country's great collections of historic courses. It's neighbors, all within blocks of the club, include the Donald Ross-designed Okland Hills, ranked 20th on America's 100 Greatest Courses, Bloomfield Hills, a 1913 Harry S. Colt design, Ross's Franklin Hills, and Charles Alison's (Colt's design partner) Tam O' Shanter. Detroit Golf Club, another Ross club with 36 holes, is just down the road. Birmingham's pedigree is impressive too: designed in 1916 by Tom Bendelow, the club hosted the 1953 PGA Championship, and in 2022 completed a multiyear renovation by Bruce Hepner that cleared trees, expanded greens and accentuated Bendelow's early 20th century architecture.
Architect Drew Rogers wasn’t familiar with Plum Hollow’s history in 2018 when interviewing to develop a masterplan for the club, and was surprised to learn the 1921 course was designed by C. H. Alison, designer of American classics like Milwaukee Country Club, the first nine holes at Sea Island, Knollwood and Burning Tree. After completing several years of work, Rogers has modified the locations and large scale of the bunkers to reflect Alison's prevailing style (his bunkers were often compared to giant clamshells), removed non-native trees and reoriented fairways and grass lines around the greens.