OUTER BANKS, N.C. -- The famed Outer Banks of North Carolina has further cemented its status as a bourgeoning golf destination, with a popular trio of area courses cracking the North Carolina Golf Panel's Top 100 Courses rankings for the first time ever.
On the heels of Kilmarlic Golf Club earning a No. 14 spot among Golfweek's 2013 "Best Courses You Can Play" in North Carolina, Kilmarlic now joins Currituck Club and Nags Head Golf Links in the 2013 Golf Panel rankings of the finest courses in one of the country's best golf states.
"Having three ranked golf courses on the Outer Banks definitely puts us on the map as a golf destination," said Ben Bridgers, general manager of Nags Head Golf Links and OBX Golf Association member. "It's a great honor for Nags Head to be in the Top 100, especially after having to recover from Hurricane Irene. We feel like the club is a hidden gem as a great test of golf located in a beautiful place."
The Top 100 courses are determined by a scoring system where panelists are asked to consider among these factors: conditioning, routing, design, strategy, memorability, fairness, variety and aesthetics. The panel's rankings are published annually in the April issue of Business North Carolina magazine, and are detailed on the panel's Web site (www.NCGolfPanel.com).
The No. 71 Currituck Club, routed by world-renowned architect Rees Jones, rolls across diverse coastal terrain with sound-side views distinctly its own on the northern end of the barrier island. The grandest design along the coast is also the area's most demanding, especially when the wind kicks up.
Located on the mainland and five minutes from the Wright Brothers Bridge, No. 84 Kilmarlic is a popular Tom Steele design nestled along the marshland of the Albemarle Sound and host course for both the 2004 and 2009 North Carolina Opens. For the past three years during the autumn months, Kilmarlic also hosted the Old Dominion/Outer Banks collegiate championship.
No. 98 Nags Head, crafted by Bob Moore, plays hard along the inner waterway on the southern end. The front and back nine closing holes along the sound are particularly spectacular. Nags Head's bar and restaurant, not surprisingly, is also home to the most dramatic sunsets in town, with views not only across the immediate Roanoke Sound, but towards three other sounds (Albemarle, Croatan and Pamlico) that flow into it from the north, west and south as well.
The OBX golf experience is enhanced by two other courses on the mainland but certainly worth leaving the island to go play. The Pointe Golf Club and The Carolina Club are a pair of the most immaculately manicured and impeccably conditioned golf courses around. After all, the sister layouts are owned and operated by a man who also runs one of the region's major turf grass companies, and both courses were built on what had previously been fertile farm land.
Learn more about these courses and the OBX golf experience at www.PlayOBXGolf.com or 800-916-6244.
Martin Armes, 919-608-7260, firstname.lastname@example.org
Brad King, 336-306-9219, email@example.com