Top 10 Most Expensive Golf Courses in the World

Have you ever thought of where the most expensive golf courses in the world are located? The Magnificent Augusta National Golf Club and the Pine Valley Golf Club are two of the most expensive golf courses in the world. However, golfers are drawn to their sacred fields because they are so beautiful.

Well, when it comes to terrain, scenery, and challenges, each of this golf course is unique. These distinguishing characteristics might result in a distinct playing experience as well as a higher cost just to tee off on the green.

Some of the Most Expensive Golf Courses in the World

#1. The Magnificent Augusta National Golf Course

The Augusta National Golf Course, located in Augusta, Georgia, is a name that resonates with golf aficionados worldwide. Established in 1933, this iconic course has hosted the prestigious Masters Tournament since 1934. The exclusivity and privacy offered by Augusta National make it a coveted destination for golf enthusiasts.

One of the most famous sections of the Augusta National Golf Club is the “Amen Corner.” Comprising holes 11, 12, and 13, this stretch demands skill, precision, and nerves of steel. Amen Corner is a golfer’s dream. Its lush green fairways and tricky water hazards make it a highlight of any round of golf at Augusta National.

Membership

At any given time, Augusta National Golf Club has approximately 300 members. There is no application process; membership is solely by invitation. USA Today provided a list of all current members in 2004. Membership is anticipated to cost between $100,000 and $300,000, with yearly dues of less than $30,000 in 2020.

Augusta National Golf Course Notable members

Some Notable current members include:

  • Warren Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway
  • Pete Coors, former chairman and CEO of Coors Brewing Company and Molson Coors Brewing Company
  • David Farr, chairman and CEO of Emerson Electric Company
  • Bill Gates, co-founder and chairman of Microsoft
  • Lou Gerstner, former IBM executive
  • Roger Goodell, commissioner of the National Football League
  • Pat Haden, former NFL player and former athletic director at the University of Southern California
  • Lou Holtz, former college football coach
  • Rob Manfred, Commissioner of Major League Baseball
  • Peyton Manning, former NFL player
  • Hugh L. McColl Jr., former CEO of Bank of America
  • Darla Moore, South Carolina businesswoman
  • Jack Nicklaus, Hall of Fame golfer, six-time Masters champion, and the only Masters champion who is currently a regular member of the club
See Also: 7 Best Atlanta Golf Courses in 2023 – Recommended Courses

#2. Pine Valley Golf Course: A Haven of Natural Beauty

The Pine Valley Golf Course is in Clementon, New Jersey. It is often thought to be one of the best golf courses in the world. Known for its natural beauty and challenging layout, Pine Valley provides a serene and picturesque setting for golfers. With its sandy waste areas and intricate green complexes, this course offers a unique and memorable golfing experience.

One of the standout features of Pine Valley Golf Club is its signature par-3 10th hole. This challenging hole requires precision and accuracy, as the green is surrounded by bunkers and guarded by trees. Golfers are often in awe of the beauty and difficulty of this hole, making it a memorable part of their Pine Valley experience.

Membership

About 930 people live all over the world, and the list of members is a closely guarded secret. Pine Valley Golf Club is a club for very few people. The board of directors is the only group that can invite people to join. A guest can only get into the club if a member invites them and stays with them. To play the course, guests must have low handicaps.

The club decided on April 30, 2021, to get rid of all language in their bylaws that was based on gender. Before this change, women could only play on the course on Sunday afternoons.

Pine Valley Golf Course Notable members

  • George H. W. Bush
  • Sean Connery
    Ben Crenshaw
  • Tom Fazio
  • Robert Trent Jones Jr.
  • Connie Mack, Bob McNair
  • Arnold Palmer
  • Gary Player
  • Dan Quayle
  • Brian L. Roberts
  • Jay Sigel
  • George C. Thomas Jr.
  • A. W. Tillinghast
  • These are all famous people who have been members of the club.

#3. Shinnecock Hills Golf Club: A Timeless Classic

Located in Southampton, New York, Shinnecock Hills Golf Course is steeped in history and tradition. Established in 1891, it is one of the oldest golf clubs in the United States. Shinnecock Hills is a favorite among golf purists because of its difficult greens and rolling fairways that have stood the test of time.

Shinnecock Hills has a strong association with the US Open, having hosted the prestigious tournament multiple times. The course’s strategic design and demanding layout provide a true test of skill for the world’s top golfers. Its inclusion in the US Open rotation further solidifies Shinnecock Hills’ reputation as one of the finest golf courses globally.

Membership

There are rumours that the initiation fee for new members is $500,000 and that the yearly dues are $13,500. This means that for the average person, it would cost about $700,000 to join the club for just one year. Shinnecock Hills Golf Club membership definitely has its benefits.

See Also: Top 7 Best Golf Courses in Nashville

Notable members

  • William K. Vanderbilt II – Millionaire yachtsman and founder of the Vanderbilt Cup
  • Howard Hughes – Business magnate, aviator, and film director
  • Robert Rubin – Former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury
  • Dick Grasso – Former Chairman and CEO of the New York Stock Exchange
  • Henry Kravis – Co-founder of private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.
  • Samuel L. Clemens (Mark Twain) – American writer and humorist
  • Jack Nicklaus – Golf legend and winner of 18 major championships
  • Phil Mickelson – Professional golfer and multiple major championship winner
  • Charles Schwab – Founder of Charles Schwab Corporation
  • Jimmy Dunne – Senior managing principal of Sandler O’Neill + Partners

The fourth on our list of Most Expensive Golf Courses in the World is the Pebble beach golf links. It’s perched along the stunning coastline of Pebble Beach, California, Pebble Beach Golf Links offers breathtaking ocean views and world-class golfing. This course has been the stage for numerous professional tournaments, including the annual AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am. Its combination of scenic beauty and challenging holes makes it a golfer’s paradise.

The 7th hole at Pebble Beach is widely regarded as one of the most spectacular holes in golf. To get to the green, golfers have to take a scary shot over a rough shoreline, with the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean in the background. Golfers who get to play at Pebble Beach Golf Links will never forget it. The beautiful scenery and difficult terrain along the coast make for a memorable experience.

Membership

The state-of-the-art Pebble Beach Golf Academy & Practice Facility includes an expanded driving range, new practice areas and cutting-edge learning technology. Pebble Beach Resorts invites you to join the Pebble Beach Practice Facility Membership, with the following membership benefits:

  • Full access to the Pebble Beach Golf Links driving range, Spyglass Hill Golf Course driving range and all short game practice areas for one full year
  • Complimentary play at The Hay when booked 24 hours in advance or less
  • 10% discount on retail purchases at the Pebble Beach Golf Academy
    Including Golf Clubs
  • 5 Guest Passes

Membership Pricing

  • $2,500 One-Year Membership
  • $1,500 per person for spouse and/or children under 21

Notable Members

  1. Al Bernardin, inventor of the Quarter Pounder
  2. Jane Bryan, film actress
  3. James Doolittle, combat pilot, Medal of Honor recipient
  4. Clint Eastwood, actor-director
  5. Pete Incaviglia, baseball player
  6. Hank Ketcham, cartoonist Dennis the Menace
  7. Gary Kildall, computer scientist and microcomputer entrepreneur
  8. Greg London, singer-actor-impressionist
  9. George Lopez, comedian
  10. Ingemar Henry Lundquist, inventor and mechanical engineer lived and worked at 17-Mile Drive and The Dunes, overlooking the fourth hole of the Spyglass Hill golf course
  11. Jim Nantz, sports broadcaster
  12. Condoleezza Rice, 66th US Secretary of State
  13. Tibor Rudas, musical impresario and originator of The Three Tenors
  14. Charles R. Schwab, stock broker
  15. Alan Shepard, astronaut
  16. Raymond Spruance, Commander, 5th Fleet, U.S. Navy in World War II, Commander of Pacific Fleet, 1945
See Also: Is Golf a Sport? Debunking the Myths and Misconceptions

#5. Cypress Point Course – Most Expensive Golf Courses in the World

Tucked away on the Monterey Peninsula in California, the Cypress Point Course offers a golfing oasis like no other. This private club boasts a stunning coastal location, with picturesque views of the Pacific Ocean. Cypress Point has a feeling of exclusivity because it has few members and tight rules about who can get in. This adds to its appeal and makes it one of the most popular places to play golf in the world.

The 16th hole at Cypress Point is legendary among golf enthusiasts. Along the rough coast, this par-3 hole requires a careful choice of club and a well-executed shot to get through the ocean breeze and reach the green. People say that serious players have to play the 16th hole at Cypress Point because it is both beautiful and hard.

Members

About 250 people are members of Cypress Point Golf Course. The PGA Championship, the U.S. Open, and the U.S. Amateur have all been played at this club. The track is also where the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am tournament has been held every year since 1947.

Notable Members

Some of the exclusive club’s notable members, past and present, include:

  • Bing Crosby – Legendary singer and actor
  • Clint Eastwood – Acclaimed actor and director
  • Jack Nicklaus – Golf icon and winner of 18 major championships
  • Tiger Woods – Professional golfer and one of the most successful players in golf history
  • Tom Watson – Professional golfer and winner of multiple major championships
  • Bill Gates – Co-founder of Microsoft Corporation
  • Warren Buffett – Business magnate, investor, and philanthropist
  • Phil Mickelson – Professional golfer and multiple major championship winner
  • Charles Schwab – Founder of Charles Schwab Corporation
  • Peter Ueberroth – Former Major League Baseball commissioner and Olympic organizer

No list of top golf courses would be complete without mentioning St. Andrews Links. St. Andrews Links made it to out list of top most expensive golf courses in the world. It is situated in St. Andrews, Scotland and holds the widely regarded title as the birthplace of golf. This historic course has been around since the 15th century and is very important to players all over the world.

The Old Course at St. Andrews is the most famous and revered of all the courses at the Links. Its unique layout, featuring shared fairways and double greens, presents a true test of skill and strategy. Golfers from all walks of life dream of walking in the footsteps of golfing legends and experiencing the magic of the Old Course firsthand.

Members

It has 2,400 people from all over the world who are members. Even though the building is right behind the first tee of the Old Course, none of the St. Andrews courses belong to the club.

St. Andrew Membership Fees

Membership Fees 2023Entry Fee  Sub     Total    
Town£457.50£305£762.50
Country£457.50£305£762.50
Overseas£457.50£305£762.50
Youth (age 18 – 25)£0£152.50    £152.50
Youth (age 18 – 25) Family membership – 50% saving on annual fee  £0£76.25£76.25
Junior (aged 5 – 17)£0£31£31
Junior (aged 5 – 17) Family membership – Free£0£0£0
House£0£150£150
House (Family members) – 50% saving on annual fee£0£75£75

Here are some notable individuals associated with St. Andrews Links:

  • Prince Andrew, Duke of York – Member of the British royal family
  • Sir Sean Connery – Acclaimed Scottish actor, known for portraying James Bond
  • Tom Watson – Professional golfer and multiple major championship winner
  • Arnold Palmer – Golf legend and winner of numerous championships
  • Sir Nick Faldo – Professional golfer and winner of multiple major championships
  • Jack Nicklaus – Golf icon and winner of 18 major championships
  • Padraig Harrington – Professional golfer and multiple major championship winner
  • Tom Morris – Historic Scottish golfer and four-time Open Championship winner
  • Old Tom Morris – Pioneering Scottish golfer and four-time Open Championship winner
  • Young Tom Morris – Legendary Scottish golfer and four-time consecutive Open Championship winner
See Also: How Many Golf Courses are in California?

#7. The Muirfield Golf Course

Seventh on our list of Most Expensive Golf Courses in the World is the Muirfield golf course. Located in Gullane, East Lothian, Scotland, Muirfield Golf Course exudes elegance and sophistication. This private members’ club has a reputation for its impeccable course conditioning and meticulous attention to detail. Muirfield’s challenging design and pristine fairways make it a favorite among professional golfers and avid enthusiasts alike.

Muirfield Golf Course, hosting The Open Championship multiple times, solidifies its status as a top golfing destination. The strategic bunkering and undulating greens offer a formidable challenge, thrilling competitors and creating lasting memories for spectators.

Members

Any candidate must first be put forward by an existing member, seconded by another, and get letters of approval from five more people. None of these seven people can be connected by blood or marriage to the candidate.

Women couldn’t be members of the Company until 2017. However, they could play on the course as guests or tourists. It was unusual that women were not allowed to join. The R&A took Muirfield off the list of Open events after a vote on the policy in May 2016 got a majority but not the two-thirds supermajority needed to change it. Secretary Stuart McEwen said the decision was “a blow to the club, the local community, and Scotland” soon after it was made public.

Muirfield Golf Course Notable Members

  • Sir Nick Faldo – Professional golfer and winner of multiple major championships
  • Jack Nicklaus – Golf legend and winner of 18 major championships
  • Phil Mickelson – Professional golfer and multiple major championship winner
  • Sir Ian Botham – Former England cricketer and commentator
  • Sir Chris Hoy – Retired British track cyclist and Olympic champion
  • Sir Michael Bonallack – Former golfer and Secretary of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews
  • Tony Jacklin – Former professional golfer and winner of major championships
  • Sir Michael Parkinson – British television presenter and journalist
  • Sir Bruce Forsyth – Late British entertainer and television personality
  • Sir Tim Rice – English songwriter and lyricist

Membership Information for 2022-2023

Fees By
Category
Membership
Subscription
Affiliation, Insurance & Jnr/Course LeviesAnnual TotalJoining Fee
Full Playing – Men & Women
7 Day
1,550.00550.002,100.00NIL
Weekday – Men & Women
Monday – Friday
1,330.00550.001,880.00NIL
Intermediate I  (24-29 years)
7 Day
870.00550.001,420.00NIL
Intermediate II (30-35 years)
within 7 Days
1,330.00550.001,880.00NIL
Intermediate (18-23 years)
in 7 Days
390.00360.00750.00NIL
Junior (13-17 years)
7 Day 
200.00170.00370.00NIL
Tyro/Cadet (8-12 years)
a 7 Day  (conditions apply)
50.00100.00150.00NIL
House
No Golf Course Access
5.005.00
See Also: 7 Best Golf Courses In The Bay Area

#8. Valderrama Golf Course: European Excellence

Valderrama Golf Course in Sotogrande, Spain, is thought to be one of the best golf grounds in all of Europe. The course’s lush fairways, pristine greens, and beautiful landscape offer a golfing experience that is both challenging and visually stunning. Valderrama’s reputation for excellence has led to its selection as the venue for numerous prestigious tournaments.

The 17th hole at Valderrama, which is lovingly called “The Snake,” is a gem of how a golf course should be made. This par-5 hole demands accuracy and strategy, with a meandering creek posing a constant threat throughout the fairway. The challenge and aesthetics of “The Snake” make it a memorable and thrilling experience for golfers fortunate enough to play at Valderrama Golf Club.

Membership

Real Club de Valderrama is a private course. But it only has a small amount of public play. Visitors can play up to two times per month and no more than seven times per year. Green fees are €450.

List of Valderrama Notable Members

Here are some notable members associated with Valderrama:

  • King Juan Carlos I – Former King of Spain
  • Severiano Ballesteros – Legendary Spanish professional golfer and multiple major championship winner
  • Sergio Garcia – Spanish professional golfer and winner of the Masters Tournament
  • Miguel Ángel Jiménez – Spanish professional golfer and multiple European Tour winner
  • José María Olazábal – Spanish professional golfer and multiple major championship winner
  • Graeme McDowell – Northern Irish professional golfer and U.S. Open champion
  • Luke Donald – English professional golfer and former world number one
  • Lee Westwood – English professional golfer and multiple European Tour winner
  • Ian Poulter – English professional golfer and Ryder Cup stalwart
  • Justin Rose – English professional golfer and U.S. Open champion

#9. Royal County Down Golf Course: Irish Charm

The Royal County Down Golf Course made it to the list of our Most Expensive Golf Courses in the World. This golf course is well-known for its picturesque setting at the base of the Mourne Mountains. It is in Newcastle, Northern Ireland. This course seamlessly blends natural beauty with a challenging layout, providing golfers with a truly remarkable golfing experience. The rugged dunes, heather-covered hills, and panoramic views create an enchanting atmosphere for players.

The 4th hole at Royal County Down holds a famous reputation as one of the toughest holes in the world. This par-3 hole requires precision and skill to navigate the deep bunkers and avoid the treacherous slopes surrounding the green. Golfers who conquer this challenging hole feel a great sense of accomplishment and appreciation for the remarkable design of Royal County Down.

Booking and Fees

Championship Links: Price
Green Fees to Nov. to February:£150
Green Fees March:£170
Green Fees April:£195
Green Fees May to September: 
Weekday Mornings & Sunday Afternoon:£325
Weekday Afternoons:£325
Green Fees Two Rounds same day:£425
Green Fees Sunday Afternoon:£325
Green Fees with a Member:N/A
Green Fees for Opens:£50
Annesley Links: 
Green Fees to March:£35
Green Fees April to October:£60
Practice Area:Yes
Club Hire:Yes
Buggy Hire:No
Soft spikes:No
See Also: 5 Oldest Golf Courses in America

#10. Oakmont Country Course: A Test of Champions

Oakmont Country Course, situated in Oakmont, Pennsylvania, holds a rich history and stands as one of the most challenging golf courses in the United States. The club has earned its reputation for lightning-fast greens, punishing rough, and strategically positioned bunkers. It has hosted numerous major championships, including the U.S. Open, further solidifying its status. Open. It has earned a reputation as a true test of skill and mental fortitude.

One of the most recognizable features of Oakmont Country Course is the Church Pews bunkers. Spanning the fairway between the 3rd and 4th holes, these long, grassy bunkers present a unique challenge for golfers. With their intimidating length and narrow openings, the Church Pews have become a distinctive and memorable part of Oakmont’s golfing experience.

Membership

The fee to join is $70,000, and the dues are around $500 a month. There is also a minimum of $80 per month for food and drinks. If you want to use the private equity membership at the Oakmont Golf Club, you have to pay a one-time fee of $125,000.

Conclusion

In the world of golf, the top 10 most expensive golf courses offer more than just a game. They provide a glimpse into a world of luxury, beauty, and unmatched golfing experiences. From the storied fairways of Augusta National to the coastal gems like Pebble Beach and Cypress Point, these courses have become iconic destinations for golfers around the globe.

Whether it’s the challenge of Pebble Beach’s rocky shore or Cypress Point’s hidden oasis, these courses are the best of the best when it comes to golfing.Each one has its own unique features, signature holes, and rich histories that add to their allure.

References

Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St_Andrews_Links

Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pebble_Beach,_California

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