New Owners of Timacuan Planning Improvements

Timacuan Golf ClubLAKE MARY, FL - While bad economic news continues to dominate the news both locally and nationally, some good news was delivered recently to Orlando-area golfers.

Timacuan Golf Club, one of Central Florida's most popular and highly ranked courses, has been purchased by Timacuan Partners Ltd. Terms of the sale between Timacuan Partners and Kitson & Partners were not disclosed.

"Timacuan is a premier facility in every respect," said a spokesperson for new owners. "Our plan is to improve upon what is already an outstanding experience for all those who utilize the facility."

Timacuan, a semi-private club, was designed in 1987 by Ron Garl and refurbished by Bobby Weed in 1996. The par-72 track features two distinctly different nines, and is traditionally ranked among the top 20 courses in Florida. It has proven to be a popular choice for corporate outings and charity events, thanks in part to the outstanding clubhouse.

Timacuan has hosted many top tier events. The Champions Tour held its Monday Qualifiers at Timacuan in 2008 and 2009, the Hooters Tour makes annual stops at Timacuan, and this great course has hosted numerous U.S. Open Local Qualifiers.

Traditionally ranked among the top 20 courses in Florida, Timacuan offers a world-class blend of unique golf holes, challenging golf shots, and scenic beauty all near Orlando.

The front nine holes, one of the strongest opening nines you will find anywhere in the state, sweeps across rolling terrain seldom found on Florida courses. The back nine holes are equally challenging but offer a different look that showcases everything that makes Florida golf great - from scenic wetlands to moss-draped oaks.

Timacuan's front nine features sprawling bunkers, generous landing areas, oversized, undulating greens, and framing mounds which combine to create a challenging and memorable nine holes.

The most notable of those is the 421-yard par 4 second. Golf Life Orlando Magazine included Timacuan's second hole among "The Best 18 Holes In Orlando." And an Orlando Business Journal article once named No. 2 the second most difficult hole in Central Florida.

Players must drive over one lake to what is in essence an island fairway, and then carry a second body of water to reach a putting surface that slopes from back to front. The shot can be anywhere 220 and 115 yards, depending upon how bold the player is off the tee. There is a bailout area to the right, but Garl suggests that players should take an extra club and aim for the green, as there is plenty of room to miss it long.

"Number two has it all - beauty, challenge and options," he said. "And there is no letup in the hole until the ball hits the bottom of the cup."

The back nine has more of a Carolina Lowcountry feel, with beautiful moss-draped oak trees and tall pines providing the framing. And it features the Timacuan "Oh Wow Corner." One large body of water comes into play on 15, 16 and 17, demanding accuracy off each tee.

The 15th is a reachable par 5, at under 500 yards. But stray left or right and you're reaching into your bag for a new ball. No. 16, playing 165 yards from the regular tees, requires an all-carry tee shot to a bunkerless green that is guarded by mounds. No. 17 is a great risk-reward hole, where longer hitters can bite off a big chunk of the lake, leaving a pitch shot to a sloping green.

Nearly every green complex at Timacuan has closely-mown fringe areas, allowing for a variety of shot selections when players miss the green. And speaking of the greens, they are consistently among the best conditioned putting surfaces in Central Florida.

"Timacuan is a semi-private golf club, but we will attempt to provide a private-club type experience," said the new owners. "Our plans are to increase the value of the membership, and also to make sure our visiting golfers feel as though Timacuan is their home away from home. We plan to provide a golf experience that is as unique as the course design."

Timacuan is home to the Mike Bender Golf Academy. Bender is ranked among the 10 top instructors in the world, and was named 2009 PGA teacher of the year. His list of students includes Masters Champion Zach Johnson, two-time U.S. Open Lee Janzen, recent PGA Tour winner Jonathan Byrd, Nationwide Tour winner Skip Kendall, and LPGA Tour Rookie of the Year Seon Hwa Lee.

Timacuan offers value-filled membership packages as well as being open to non-members. For more information, or to make a tee time, call (407) 321-0010. The club's website is


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