Grand Opening Of The Cardinal

Grand Opening of The Cardinal

I was thrilled to have the opportunity on Saturday to play in the Grand Opening of Michigan’s newest course: The Cardinal.

The Cardinal is the eighteen-hole course built on the bones of the old Matthew, Mark and Luke nines at the Inn at St. John’s in Plymouth (now called St. John’s Resort). Other parts of those nines were converted to a seven-hole short course (the Little Cardinal) and a putting course.

Golf is just part of an investment of tens of millions in the St. John’s property by Pulte Family Management. In addition to the courses, the property will feature upgraded hotel rooms, new ballrooms, pavilions, pub and wine bar.

There was a wedding underway while we were playing; I could see a bridal party waving and shouting from an upper floor balcony.

All profits from the resort will go to support the Pulte Family Charitable Foundation.

Architect Ray Hearn gave a short talk on his design philosophy for The Cardinal during the grand opening ceremonies.

The Cardinal, Little Cardinal and putting course all are the design work of Holland, Michigan-based golf architect Ray Hearn.

I’ll have more to say about The Cardinal in a full review later; for now I’ll say that Hearn has skillfully used the land forms to create a memorable collection of holes. Kudos also to The Cardinal’s superintendent Kevin Peck for the impeccable conditions. The crispness of every line and edge from tee to green was notable.

At The Cardinal.

Afterwards, I had the chance to play the seven hole short course. Every green at the Little Cardinal is inspired by a classic hole from the British Isles, such as a biarritz, postage stamp and sahara.

It was fun.

The Cardinal opens to the public June 24.

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