8 Great Tom Jackson Golf Courses

By:Bob Gillespie

Date:2/10/2014

Tom Jackson
Tom Jackson

Tom Jackson has built more than 100 golf courses over a 45-year period – including some 45 in his adopted home state of South Carolina, many of them widely acclaimed – and asking the 73-year-old Greenville resident to pick his favorites is sort of like asking a father to choose his favorite children.

“I’m proud of all of them,” Jackson says. “And I’d hate to offend anyone” who is a member of a Jackson design that doesn’t make his list.

That said, any architect knows when he’s done his best work. And Jackson, whose work has wound down as the golf course industry has done the same, has a wide selection to choose from, ranging from his Ups​tate roots to Myrtle B​each (seven designs along the Grand Strand) and even into the Midlan​ds and Lowco​untry.

Here are Jackson’s choices as his best work.

​The Cliffs at Glassy, Landrum – “I started out with a developer who’d never done a golf course, and we did the construction sort of hand-to-mouth, but the way it followed the contours of the land and how it ended up, it blossomed into something special. (It’s) a unique property on a low budget.” Note – Golf Digest named the course the fourth most scenic in the U.S., sitting at 3,000 feet elevation.

​Carolina Country Club, Spartanburg – “The course has two distinct nines: the front nine is in a valley, but the back nine has rolling hills, so it’s like night and day. We built that the same year (1984) as …” Note – Considered one of the Upstate’s best.

​Links O’ Tryon, Campobello – “This is one of my favorites to play, because we weren’t trying for a lot of length or difficulty. It’s on a small piece of land, so we had to maximize the shot values of the property. It’s a course where you don’t have to hit driver on a lot of holes, but it’s still challenging.” Note – Named one of the U.S.’s top new courses in 1992-93.

​Arrowhead, Myrtle Beach – “It’s a great facility but it’s a manufactured golf course because we had a dead-flat piece of property as well as a lot of restrictions on runoff. So we had to maintain a lake system that generated a lot of water for retention, and we used the dirt (from digging lakes) to construct a course with a 3-dimensional look; I think it turned out well, and all that water is a challenge. Even the above-average golfer has to pay attention.” Note – Has 27 holes made up of The Waterway, The Cypress and The Lakes nines; Jackson shares credit with PGA Tour legend Raymond Floyd on design.

​Plantation Course, Edisto – “Again, it’s a small piece of property and it was pristine, with all these live oaks, so we had to be careful on clearing, keeping the width of the fairways close. Since 1975-77, a lot of the trees have grown in, so it’s tighter. A lot of players tell me they like it, the demands to hit it straight, and you like to hear that.” Note – Built in 1973 and originally named Oristo; renovated in 2006.

​Pebble Creek, Greenville – “It’s my home course, and we started with 18 holes in 1974 and added 18 more in 1984; it’s a great facility and covers about 1,200 acres. They run it as a semi-private course now.” Note – Course has private Linkside and semi-private Creekside 18s.

​The River Club, Litchfield Beach – “I think it’s a great golf course. What’s amazing is nowadays you’ll spend $200,000 to $500,000 on clearance of the property; we built the entire course for that.” Notes – Rated 4.5 (of five) stars by Golf Digest; Nos. 14 and 18 featured in the book “The 100 Greatest Holes Along the Grand Strand.”

​Mount Vintage Plantation, North Augusta – “It was a beautiful piece of land. The budget was tight there, too, but we managed the costs and still provided maximum quality. It has a nice flow to it; you can walk it or ride it, and enjoy both.” Notes – Mount Vintage, which has 27 holes made up of the Chester, Vintage (both opened in 2000) and Independent (2008) nines, is currently closed, according to a Feb. 9, 2014, report by the Aiken Standard newspaper.

Related Content

Golf Vacation in South Carolina
Anyone who has golf-vacationed in South Carolina knows the possibilities range from all-you-can-play smorgasbords to high-end coastal resorts. And that’s the beauty of it, there’s a deal perfect for anyone, in any price range.
Top South Carolina Grand Strand Golf Courses
The people have spoken - those who play golf on South Carolina’s Grand Strand, that is - and the edition of the Myrtle Beach Golf Insider’s “Hot List” includes a couple of old favorites, but also a pair of newcomers, among the area’s top five.
Darius Rucker’s Favorite South Carolina Golf Courses
Darius Rucker plays a lot of golf. A founding member of the band Hootie and the Blowfish, he regularly tours the country, but despite having played golf all over the world, Rucker still says it’s hard to beat South Carolina for golf options.

Featured Products

Country Club Of South Carolina
Midlands

Florence

Midlands

Midlands

The
Midlands Region

Learn More
This 900-acre development in Florence, SC, is a residential community woven around the magnificent Ellis Maples designed championship golf course. CCSC is a challenging, ...
The Plantation Course at Edisto
Coast

Edisto Island

Coast

Coast

The
Coast Region

Learn More
This masterpiece that will challenge golfers of all levels with its breathtaking beauty, exceptional service, superior course conditions and three sets of tees. The arch ...
Mount Vintage Plantation Golf Club
Midlands

North Augusta

Midlands

Midlands

The
Midlands Region

Learn More
Mother Nature gave Mount Vintage Plantation the perfect setting for a golf course. Architect Tom Jackson designed these 27 holes to fit perfectly into the diverse topogra ...

Featured products and attractions in "8 Great Tom Jackson Golf Courses"

Nearby Attractions

  • {{item.name}}

You might also like:

Wild Water & Wheels
Coast

Surfside Beach

Coast

Coast

The
Coast Region

Learn More
This 16-acre state-of-the-art amusement park is filled with over 33 exciting rides, including high speed flumes, a wipeout wave pool, waterfalls, a complete kids water pl ...
Golf Club Of South Carolina At Crickentree
Midlands

Blythewood

Midlands

Midlands

The
Midlands Region

Learn More
The Golf Club of South Carolina designed by Ken Killian is known for its stunning topography, meandering streams, soaring hardwoods, scenic 17-acre lake, and manicured ti ...
Indian Trail Golf Course
Midlands

Batesburg

Midlands

Midlands

The
Midlands Region

Learn More
This course has several sand bunkers incorporated throughout its design, and water hazards come into play on nine holes. The signature hole is #14, a scenic, 336-yard, pa ...
Mid Carolina Club
Midlands

Prosperity

Midlands

Midlands

The
Midlands Region

Learn More
The fairways are relatively tight, and ponds and lakes come into play on seven holes. This course's most difficult hole is #10, a 430-yard, par 4, requiring a tee shot up ...
Cheraw State Park Golf Course
Midlands

Cheraw

Midlands

Midlands

The
Midlands Region

Learn More
Cheraw State Park Golf Course has been called "the best kept secret in South Carolina." The course is one of just 40 in the country to earn Golf Digest's highest honor as ...
Cokesbury Hills Golf Course
Midlands

Hodges

Midlands

Midlands

The
Midlands Region

Learn More
This relatively flat and short nine-hole course is an easy and enjoyable walk. With generous fairways and small fast greens, this course will provide a challenge for golf ...