The Best New Remodel of 2006 features a couple of familiar faces: The Stanwich Club in Greenwich, Conn., a member of Golf Digest's elite ranking of America's 100 Greatest from 1969-'79 and again from 1987-2003, and architect Tom Fazio, his 12th Best New honor since 1987.
Dropping off the 100 Greatest list in 2005 was no factor in the club's decision to bring in Fazio and his team. Since the late 1990s, club officials knew they had '60s greens with contours too bold for modern green speeds and trees that crowded corridors and stunted turf growth.
In 2002, Fazio assigned his senior design associate Tom Marzolf to analyze each hole and provide a comprehensive improvement plan. (They had the benefit of seeing how Stanwich held up in competition, because the U.S. Mid-Amateur was played there that year.) Marzolf recommended the removal of hundreds of trees, softer contours on seven new greens and the regrading of two fairways to eliminate unfair side slopes. He was also struck by the absence of fairway bunkers—just three on the entire back nine—and with Fazio's blessing, convinced the club to beef up bunkers and back tees. He also suggested a number of new forward tees to make the course more manageable for high-handicappers.
The new-and-improved Stanwich measures 7,455 yards, par 72 from the back tees (more than 500 yards longer than it played in the Mid-Am) and has 23 new, strategic fairway bunkers on 11 holes, done not in the Fazio style, but in the style of Stanwich's original architects, the father-and-son team of William and David Gordon.
BEST NEW REMODEL 1. THE STANWICH C.__
__ Greenwich, Conn. 7,455 yards, par 72 (private). Initiation fee: undisclosed Tom Fazio. stanwich.com __2. THE C.C. OF ROCHESTER
__ Rochester, N.Y. n 6,547 yards, par 70 (private). Fee: $40,000.
Gil Hanse. ccrochester.org 3. KINGSMILL RESORT & SPA (RIVER CSE.)__
__ Williamsburg, Va. 6,831 yards, par 71, $175. Pete Dye.
](http://kingsmill.com)More about this course. 4. PETE DYE RIVER CSE. OF VA. TECH__
__ Radford, Va. n 7,665 yards, par 72, $70. Pete Dye. 540-
More about this course. 5. HERMITAGE C.C. (MANAKIN G. CSE.)__
__ Manakin-Sabot, Va. 6,955 yards, par 72 (private). Fee: $40,000. Keith Foster. hermitagecountryclub.com