Legendary golf course designer Tom Fazio has signed his name to over 200 golf courses, and many of them are recognized on “best of” lists at state and national levels. Among his most acclaimed designs are several in the state of North Carolina, including BrightsCreek, Quail Hollow, Wade Hampton, and of course Pinehurst #8. But in the hills just outside of Hendersonville, NC and only minutes from his office is perhaps Fazio’s best design that you haven’t heard of.
Voted one of the best residential golf communities in the United States, Champion Hills Club has 730 acres nestled on the eastern edges of the Blue Ridge Mountains just eight minutes from downtown Hendersonville, 30 minutes from Asheville and about an hour from Greenville, SC. This ideal location affords members the ability to play golf year-round, while still experiencing seasonal changes in weather like frosty mornings in the fall while the colors change and warm, humid summer nights by the fire pit. The course was even rated the No. 1 year-round course in North Carolina.
His design company’s offices being less than six miles away, Tom Fazio was a natural choice to design a course on this amazing piece of property. Land that features such dramatic changes in elevation as this site does can make it very challenging to lay out a playable golf course, but making it friendly to play for all abilities, genders and age groups is even harder. After all, this is a member’s course. Fazio’s mastery of course routing resulted in a par 71 layout that doesn’t feel like mountain golf, while being in the mountains.
By using some clever routing and creating what Fazio calls “playing platforms” in the landing areas from tee to green, the course has only six holes that play uphill despite almost 350 feet of elevation change on the property. The majority of the holes play downhill, and a few of the drops are quite dramatic, such as the par three 9th hole that drops almost 125 feet from tee to green. This results in a very fair and playable course without missing out on those amazing mountain views. Fazio calls Champion Hills a “golf course in the mountains, not a mountain golf course.”
While the golf course may be the centerpiece of this community, it is far from the only thing going on at this active club. There are over 17 miles of maintained trails around the property, which helped Champion Hills get voted Best Hiking Community of the Year by Real Estate Scorecard in 2017. Champion Hills is also an active tennis club with lessons, clinics and leagues (Pickleball is coming soon), and they have a well-equipped, modern fitness center with two personal trainers and a professional staff to help you get in the best shape of your life, or just work off that big meal you ate last night.
Speaking of meals… The Mountain View Room is the highlight of the magnificent 25,000 square-foot clubhouse and Champion Hills’ main dining room, with stunning views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and a country club casual atmosphere. The culinary team brings creative ideas to classic recipes and are committed to approachability and service. Next door to the main dining room is the Fazio Pub, for lighter fare or to enjoy the game on TV and and a few beers after playing golf.
Champion Hills Club is managed by Troon Golf, the world’s largest golf management company. As such, full members at Champion Hills have access to Troon Privé Privileges, which gives them access to over 100 Troon private courses and amenities at Troon Privé member rates, as well as opportunities to experience 150+ resort and daily fee locations at preferred rates. Plus, all members of Troon Privé clubs receive special discounts with Avis Rental Cars, Ship Sticks, Entertainment, Marinas and more. tennis players also enjoy preferred access, rates and benefits at Cliff Drysdale Tennis clubs and resorts throughout the United States and Bermuda.
The Blue Ridge Mountains of North and South Carolina are among the most desirable places to raise a family or retire in the eastern United States. Among the many places to see, things to do and experiences to be had, Champion Hills Club stands out as one of the finest places to live and play in the region. Having spent a day there in the fall, I learned quickly how this residential community seems to be doing so many things right. From the immaculately conditioned golf course, to the gorgeous clubhouse and facilities, to the warm, welcoming staff and the active and diverse membership, Champion Hills Club has found a winning formula and deserves your attention.
To plan your visit and get more details about Real Estate, golf, memberships and more, visit www.championhills.com for more information.