In this section learn more about the history of the course and its hometown, see a selection of historic and current images of the course, learn about what the course is like today, and discover nearby historic sites.
The Biltmore Golf Course is located in the City of Coral Gables in Miami-Dade County. George E. Merrick, a visionary developer who by 1921 had amassed 3,000 acres of undeveloped land on the outskirts of Miami, set out to create a planned community he called “The City Beautiful” – Coral Gables. The crown jewel of the fledgling city was the Biltmore Hotel. The Hotel complex originally featured two Donald Ross-designed 18-hole golf courses. Ground was broken in 1925, and on January 2, 1926, Bobby Jones and Tommy Armour played a 36-hole exhibition golf match against Gene Sarazen and Leo Diegel to open the new Miami-Biltmore links. Jones and Armour won by a slender margin of one up.
At the onset of World War II, the federal government purchased the hotel complex for use as a veteran’s hospital and released 18-holes of the golf complex to a private entity that formed the Riviera Country Club. In 1945, the City of Coral Gables leased the remaining 18 holes of the Biltmore golf course from the government at $1 per year.
In 2007, golf course architect Brian Silva completed a comprehensive restoration of the course. Working from original routing plans, aerial photos and Donald Ross’ notes, Silva recreated the authenticity of the 1925 layout. Most impressive are the bunkers. Silva identified long-abandoned or grassed-over bunkers, excavated them to their original depth and created a wavy-edged, filigreed look along the top edges. “The fairway bunkers pull you through this golf course in a way that’s outstanding,” Silva explains. “Ross designed the fairways to subtly twist and turn around the bunkers, even on the straightaway holes.”
The 18-hole, par-71, Biltmore Golf Course features five sets of tees playing from 5,200 to 6,700 yards. The strength of the championship Donald Ross golf course is its superb collection of par 4s. They range from drive-and-pitch gems to dangerous holes like the 450-yard 17th, which calls for a solid drive followed by an unerring approach over water to a bulk-headed green.
The Biltmore Golf Course is the site of the Junior Orange Bowl International Golf Championship which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2013. The championship is a prestigious junior golf tournament for the best 18 and under players in the world. This international golf championship boasts an impressive alumni list including current professional players Tiger Woods, Bubba Watson, and Lexi Thompson.
The historic Biltmore Hotel - Completed in 1926 with exquisite, hand-painted frescos on barrel-vaulted ceilings, brilliant travertine floors, fine marble columns, intricate leaded glass fixtures, carved mahogany furnishings and lavish gardens, the Biltmore was one of the most fashionable resorts in the entire country in its heyday. It is the centerpiece of George Merrick’s vision of Coral Gables as an elegant, stately suburb, which he called “The City Beautiful.” Combining his deep affection for lush South Florida landscape with a high regard for Italian, Moorish and Spanish architectural influences, Merrick realized his dream in the construction of this masterpiece. The hotel was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1972 and became a National Historic Landmark in 1996.
1210 Anastasia Avenue
Coral Gables, Florida 33134
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