44. Camargo Club
Seth Raynor (1927)
One of Seth Raynor’s last designs, it wasn’t completed until nearly a year after his death. William Jackson, who later became the club’s pro and superintendent, handled the construction and was faithful to Raynor’s diagrams with two exceptions: he turned the 16th into a par 4 and the 17th into a par 5. Robert von Hagge added flashy but incongruous bunkering in the early 1980s. They lasted over 20 years, until Tom Doak undertook a restoration in the Raynor style of geometric-shaped bunkers and greens. Curiously, the Biarritz green at the par-3 eighth has never been mowed as the 60-yard-long putting surface found on other Biarritz holes built by Raynor or his mentor C.B. Macdonald. Club officials insisted early aerial photos confirm the front half of the green was always mown at fairway height, so they continue that tradition today.
100 Greatest History: Ranked 1966, 1991-2008 & since 2017. Highest ranking: Current ranking. Previous ranking: 44.
Watch Golf Digest’s latest “Every Hole At” course videos below:
“The genius of Raynor is being able to fit all the MacDonald templates on a piece of property and make them look like they totally belong even though many of the holes are created. Camargo is a typically grand effort from Raynor, a huge ballpark and golf in a grand scale.”
“Simple and straightforward looking, yet endlessly complex in options. A legitimate architectural masterpiece.”
“Some of the best par 3s I've ever seen. Fantastic renditions of classic complexes (Eden, Biarritz, Short, and Redan) are superb. They're the ideal -- all playing in different directions and with different yardages.”
“Camargo reminds me of a cross between Shoreacres and Yale. The layout is not nearly as hard as Yale, but the huge routing and severe hills are reminiscent of Yale. The ravines dotting the property are bigger than Shoreacres, but they have a similar feel in the way that Raynor routes the holes not only across the ravines, but along beside and into them.”
“Holes that play across valleys, around valleys, and holes that run along the perimeter of huge drop-offs create different looks on every single hole. Greens average 11,000+ square feet in size, so there are many angles of attack that are offered at Camargo with an multitude of hole locations.”