36. San Francisco Golf Club
A.W. Tillinghast (1924)
San Francisco Golf Club’s original routing was done mostly by a trio of club members, who first staked out the course in 1918. A.W. Tillinghast remodeled the course in 1923, establishing its signature greens and bunkering. He also added the par-3 seventh, called the “Duel Hole” because its location marks the spot of the last legal duel in America. Three holes were replaced in 1950 in anticipation of a street widening project that never happened. In 2006, the original holes were re-established by Tom Doak and his then-associate, Jim Urbina.
100 Greatest History: Ranked since 1971. Highest ranking: No. 18, 1999-02. Previous ranking: 35
Watch Golf Digest’s latest “Every Hole At” course videos below:
Panelist comments, San Francisco Golf Club:
“Traditional Tillinghast course with very generous landing areas. Fairway bunkering well placed along with the mounding and contoured fairways to collect mishit drives, yet bunkers were not punishing."
“A total gem. From the hidden entrance, to the way the course just unfolds from the first tee next to the clubhouse, this is such a pleasure to play and a tremendous experience.”
“The conditioning is my new ideal as the fairways were perfectly rolling and the greens were very fast, firm, and rolled true. It would've given it a 9 (or more) except there were a couple of greens where in very small areas they were killing off poa-annua infestation (#12 and #17).”
“Tremendous variety in one 18-hole routing: doglegs each direction, uphill and downhill holes of varying length. Extremely memorable with uniqueness to the design of each hole.”
“Tom Doak has finished his job of bringing back the three original Tillinghast holes (Nos. 13 through 15). Many trees have been removed and old, lost bunkers have been added.”