Adena Golf & Country Club
A Pinnancle Golf Experience
By Mike May
Scenic, stunning, sensational, special, and, at all times, attention-getting. Those are just a few of the slew of superlatives that best describe the Adena Golf & Country Club (adenaclub.com) in Ocala, Florida. The only thing that Adena has in common with other golf courses is that it features a mixture of par threes, par fours, and par fives. All comparisons to all other golf courses end there.
Since Adena opened in July 2015, it has quickly established itself as one of Florida's most sought-after golf experiences, right alongside the Blue Monster Course at Doral in Miami, the Stadium Course at TPC in Ponte Vedra Beach, and the Champion Course at PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens.
As a private club, access to golf at Adena is not an everyday golf experience. Instead, it's truly a golf experience that you think and dream about every day. When you do first step foot on Adena, it's the beginning of a dreamlike experience which you never want to end. The attention to detail at Adena is second to none, with the possible exception of Augusta National, Seminole, Pine Valley, and Pebble Beach - maybe! Adena is to golf as Pele is to soccer, Cher is to showbiz, Churchill is to politics, Gandhi is to human rights, and Yanni is to music -- all one-word sensations with global appeal.
"I believe what makes Adena so special is the quality and manicuring of the golf course and the friendly, service orientated staff," said Michael Moss, general manager, Adena Golf & Country Club. "Our superintendent, Asa High, learned world-class agronomy practices at Augusta National and applies that knowledge at Adena."
The Adena golf experience begins with first-class and courteous hospitality at the front gate and continues throughout the day. As soon as you pass through the front gate, the quality of the Adena experience is immediately reinforced by the stunning views of the multiple waterfalls on the course which you'll see as you drive toward the clubhouse. The Adena experience is then reinforced by the friendly entourage of attendants who will welcome you at the bag drop, park your car, check you in at the pro shop, and answer any questions you might have at the driving range, which only features Pro V1s from Titleist.
The atmosphere at the driving range is welcoming, nurturing, and, frankly, fun. It's a PGA Tour-like setting. There's no need to rush from the range to the first tee. It's important to experience the range before you arrive at the first tee. The range is a utopia-like experience filled with an unlimited supply of mulligans. When you step foot on the first tee, it is the beginning of a four-hour reality journey where every shot will count, but there will be times when you, admittedly, won't want to count every shot. But, that's golf at Adena.
The first two holes - a pair of left-to-right par fours -- are a mild introduction to the overall Adena experience. After that, golf course designer/founder Frank Stronach upped the degree of difficulty as he didn't let his architectural foot off the gas. At Adena, you will hit some shots and strike some putts that you didn't think ever existed on the planet. To say that the four par threes are the highlights of any round is a disservice to the creative ingenuity that Stronach used in designing the entire course, but those four par threes - holes 5, 8, 15, and 17 -- are vivid memory makers, especially the first two which are played over the wide and ominous quarry.
Temptation is another alluring attribute of the Adena experience, beginning with the tee shot on 10th hole, a short par four, which only measures 324 yards from the back tees. The prudent move is to leave the driver in the bag, but not all players are pragmatic.
The one par four which stands apart from the other 17 holes is the dogleg, left-to-right, par four 3rd. It's the only hole which is tree-lined. While it only measures 381 yards from the tips, inaccurate tee shots that wander into the trees will cause you some discomfort.
One of Adena's many unique attributes is that the front nine features a pair of back-to-back par fives - holes 6 and 7. Both holes represent a chance to bring stability to your round. Back-to-back birdies are possible, but accurate tee shots are a necessity on both holes. The tee shots on the two back nine par fives are strongly influenced by a group of trees on both sides of the fairway. Split the fairway with your tee shots and then pursue a low score with a vengeance.
While Adena features 18 spectacular holes, the best stretch of the course starts early in the back nine.
According to Moss, the 11th appears cut into a valley, the 12th and 13th have beautiful mature oaks, and the 14th has stunning views back up to the clubhouse. The 13th also gives you a stadium-like feel.
As for the quality of the greens at Adena, they are pure, smooth, fair, fast and filled with creative humps and undulations. Aggressive putters often have long comebackers for par at Adena.
So, when you are prepared for a scenic, stunning, sensational, special, and, at all times, attention-getting golf experience, then you are ready Adena......and Adena will be ready for you. She won't disappoint.
Revised: 02/22/2019 - Article Viewed 1,734 Times - View Golf Course Profile
About: Mike May
Mike May is a Wellington, Florida-based freelance golf and sportswriter, who is also a 25+ year public relations and communications executive in the sporting goods industry. He is also a veteran high school soccer official, an experienced high school basketball coach, an avid athlete, a part-time personal trainer, and a passionate golfer who is forever in pursuit of Old Man Par. He is a member of the Golf Writers Association of America.
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