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Tuesday
Sep042012

"Thistle Dhu" Opens At Pinehurst

Bill Fields files a Golf World Monday item (with great photo) on the Himalayas-style putting green that opened at Pinehurst resort, paying homage to a 1919 miniature built in the area.

The resort has also posted this YouTube video of the green's opening. It is free to play for resort guests.

Now if we could just build about 1000 of these around the country...

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Reader Comments (27)

Nothing is free to resort guests at Pinehurst. Check your bill on the way out and you will see that they get it one way or another...
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmen Coroner
Very cool, will be in area soon and check it out. Free to public or free to Resort guests?
09.4.2012 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
Harv,
Free to guests, though I'm sure based on where it's located you can take a look at it.
09.4.2012 | Registered CommenterGeoff
To Amen's point, "included in the room rate for resort guests" might be the most accurate way to write the brochure ;-) The "public" need not apply!
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Thistle Dhu is open to anyone playing golf at Pinehurst.
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterPinehurst Resort
Dear Phurst Resort,

Way to lead the charge of making golf more inclusive in the US! Do you know if the putting course at St. Andrews restricts play to only those playing one of their courses? Good guess they actually don't restrict acess in fact I believe its open to anyone and everyone all the time for a few pence. Why does golf in our great country defy the very reason it was founded?

Thank you Phurst Resort!
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmen Coroner
Hey Pinehurst Resort,

Thanks for posting and thanks for filling me up on the Thistle Dues course!
Pinehurst Resort How bout opening it to the public, free to kids, $5 or $10 to anyone else including seniors, and donate all the money to a local cause like First Tee and be a PIONEER to growing the game and being inclusive. I love your Resort and I know for it to stay so nice you have to make money, I get it, but a nice warm fuzzy goes a long way in the golf community. Besides, there are a lot of people that visit Pinehurst even though they are not staying there. It is an ICONIC part of American golf. I walk thru your halls at least a half dozen times a year just because I am obsessed with the photos and memorabilia. How cool would it be for me to pull into the driveway with my kids, pay my fee, and play the putting course. We would probably have a special lunch on the veranda overlooking the 18th green and maybe they would be hooked and want to come back again. You have the chance to do something really cool here Pinehurst, be a leader.
09.4.2012 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
Ol Harv you getit. The people that make certain decisions do not. They are paid not to get it. Unfortunately whomever is posting under Pinehurst Resort gets it if they follow this site and felt compelled to post but if they spoke up at the next meeting it might spell doom for them. So please visit the place but don't spend any money until they see your creative ways of amazingly good thinking and common sense.
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmen Coroner
What up with old guys, bulging stomachs and shorts?

This would never work as a way to grow game as designed here. Too many contours, players trying to read putts like a pro! Talk about slow play. A better way and I have seen it at grey oaks in Naples fl. Each "hole" has its own fairway so to speak. About 7 feet wide, varying in length and contour. Keeps everyone separated balls not going all over the place, greAt for kids keeps them focused only on one hole at a time, it's like putt putt with real grass and no clowns
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterA3
@Coroner Look, I probably know the person that responded, and I respect why they are doing what they are doing. They have a beautiful pool and playground also and I certainly wouldn't expect them to open that up to everyone. But Pinehurst is such a special place and often compared to St. Andrews where people roam around. Every time I visit Pinehurst there are tons of people roaming the halls, or buying stuff in the pro shop or checking out the statues. It would just be COOL if they could somehow make the new putting course INCLUSIVE.But again, they should come up with that on their own and not have to apologize for why they are doing what they are doing. STILL AN AWESOME PLACE!
09.4.2012 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
Harv, it's the "summer season" at Pinehurst "Resort" (prepare to bend over whenever they insert "resort" into the name), summer season offers the lowest rates. For $289/night you get a breakfast, a sleeve of balls (TopRocks?), and 1 round of golf. However, if you want to play #2 that will be another $175, for a total of $464...likely $500+ after taxes, "resort" fee, etc...

In the spring and the fall (when the weather is fit non-Bedouin's) add another $100 to that rate...so $600++ for a one night stay, a plate of eggs, 3 TopRocks, and one round on #2. NOTE: those rates are double occupancy per person and are from the 2011 rate card, could not locate 2012 rate card.

So, with people paying $600++ to access #2 the "resort" couldn't possibly allow the riff raff to come in and play the Thistle Dues for free (and thereby infringing on the exclusive experience of the $600++ folks).

I just wonder how long it's going to be until they "privatize" and put up a gate like Sea Island did.

Heck, come play the Red with me, it's better than the old #2 (I haven't seen it since the reno) and even if you are out of state it's less than $100. Who knows, maybe we'd luck into a time on the Black ;-) And if you are really feeling fired up you can overnight at the Bethpage "resort" for FREE!
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
DTF We used to play #2 during the winter special they would run until end of February and actually got a couple of great weather weekends. I think the special was $199 PLUS PLUS but at least you got breakfast and could get on 2 for less than a mortgage payment. Then we caught it on a raw weekend one time and said AMF to that. I guess they are getting it because the rates have hung tough. The thing that got me at Pinehurst was how every time they re-did the greens on a different course that course then became a premium course and you got nailed with an extra charge. I think the only one left that doesn't charge you a surcharge is maybe #1 and possibly #3. These resorts are living and dieing on the corporate dollars and when and if that ever dries up look out. Ex. Sea Island.
09.4.2012 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
Perhaps I misspoke. Thistle Dhu is free of charge and open to anyone on the grounds. There is no starting gate or fee. Drop a ball and play.
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterPinehurst Resort
That sounds suspiciously like "open to the public"...!! Could it be?!?
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
So, here's one for you boys. Got rained out at Seaside on a Tuesday early last month by one of those thunderstorms that will make an atheist caught out in a small boat rethink his position. I had a McGladrey voucher for Ghost Jr. and me ($250 for two rounds w/cart, two surplus McGladrey golf shirts, and two surplus caps) and a visiting friend was to play as the guest of another friend who is a member. Rescheduled for Friday, so my friend used the other half of my voucher after Ghost Jr. returned to school. The August special "play as guest of a member" fee would have been $60 (w/cart) on Tuesday. And yes, the gate is still there, but on Thursday afternoon we showed up and asked to use the range and short game area for a little practice in advance of our big day, which was my first time there since long before they went to 36 holes. The very pleasant gentleman said go right ahead. Anyway, that guest fee is less than it was in the previous, profitable Bill II administration, adjusted for inflation. August in low low season on St. Simons, but someone is paying attention.

Great news from PR on Thistle Dhu. But it would still cost me about right at 3 months dues to spend one night and one round on #2 during April in North Carolina. Would love to do it, but that market won't bear me.
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterKLG
Well, you're not gonna get hurt if someone hits into you.
09.4.2012 | Unregistered Commenterjohn
@KLG Wow, maybe they are. My experience was always Sea Island is way more than just about anywhere with exception of Pebble. Group of us went in early to mid 90's and stayed at a "cottage"(mansion) on Sea Island and it was one of the greatest golf trips ever. At that time every round was less than $100 and replay may have been cart only or maybe 40 bucks. Would love to be able to go back.
09.4.2012 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
I was in Pinehurst last week. Had a peak at No. 2 but didn't play it...but visually it looked like to be one of the biggest improvements I have ever seen from a renovation. No. 2 was never really high on my list of places to play, now I'd put it near the top.
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterRobert Matre
I clearly remember the day I was no longer welcome, as a non-resort guest, to hit balls on Maniac Hill. It was shortly after the '99 Open, I had been going over from the Pinecrest to practice there a few times a year since the early '80s.

So I doubt Thistle Dhu is free for you.
I have never been kicked off any putting green at any CC in Austin, and I believe that PH is owned by the same group that owns a couple around here. Of course, I don't show up in cutoffs and flip flops with a 24 oz. beer can either.

When you look like you are supposed to be somewhere, it's amazing where you can be--- got invited onto a MLB field during BP and media interviews once because I had on an(unrelated) laminate....etc, etc..... if I'm gonna be impotant, I wanna look impotant!

Nice for PH PR to get back on and clear up the policy, which is as I suspected.
09.4.2012 | Unregistered Commenterdigsouth
If it's free and open to the public, then I'll drive my dad there when he's in town. We can't afford, and we're not nearly good enough, to play the courses, but this would be a great anchor for a day trip to Pinehurst.

And this is the kind of thing that I wish Tiger had funded around the country in disadvantaged areas starting around, oh, 2000. There's always hope that we can get these started around the country yet, Geoff!
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterJim S
Now put in the Clowns' Mouth for the 18th hole and you have someting!
09.4.2012 | Unregistered Commenterrb
Hi all...was there this past weekend....the new putting course is really cool.....right by the #1 tee for Pinehurst 4. Was closed in the morning, but by the time the round ended, it was open for access.....if you can get to the practice range, you can putt on the course.
Played 2/4/5/6/8...the renovations on 2 are nice....only had 2 balls in the new waste areas...both good lies....4 and5 in good shape...6 had slow and bumpy greens, and 8 were less bumpy yet very slow (greenskeeper reported stimping at 8.5). Kinda disappointing on those last 2.
Expensive? Sure, a bit....but a pretty special experience overall ( our 5th trip there)

Ps...played Dormie club while in the area....its a must!
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterJjgolfer
one of the big stories with the green complex is the grass that was used. Another convert to bermuda which is making an incredible comeback for putting surfaces in the south. North Carolina is starting to lead the way and most of the reviews are positive. Will be interesting to see if the Mid-Atlantic region, which is really a tough transition zone, will follow. Only a few so far.
09.4.2012 | Unregistered CommenterKelly
Sounds like a fun way to consume a few adult beverages after playing 36 at the second best golf resort in the USA. Pinehurst can't beat Bandon in my opinion, but it is just terrific and a very close second. I like all of the courses, even the Rees Jones course. Who doesn't like #2? It's an institution in American golf, after all, even if the greens are beyond demonic. I also love the #1 course, which is only about 5800 yards, but very pretty to the eye and easy to play. I don't know about you, but after shooting ten over my handicap on #2, I rather enjoy the nine-iron par 3 and the three wood/wedge holes.
09.5.2012 | Unregistered Commentertlavin
Cool idea, but lets wait and see how this putting green holds up over time...will people actually use it?

IMO, the best putting green(s) in the Pinehurst area are located at Pine Needles. The main putting green is shaped like a doughnut with a pretty flower bed, and there's the "back" green near the parking lot that's has lights on at night.

The BEST time putting I ever had was in '94, on my 20th B-day with 4 guys from my golf team, some Catawba college buddies were also there as well as the Pfiefer(sp?) college UK golfers..(cool cats)...PLUS two womens golf teams from the north who were in the Pinehurst area on a spring training trip. We started putting at about 9:15...ended at 12:30 after the 2 cases of miller lite were confirmed killed...then I got the keys to the team van and invited a co-ed to come and "check out our new CD player/stereo system"...hehehe...it was as easy as clubbing seals.

It's too bad youth is wasted on the young
09.6.2012 | Unregistered Commenterjohnnnycz

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