|Riddell’s Bay Golf & Country Club is a private Club that has a beautiful 18 hole golf course. Opened in 1922 it is Bermuda’s oldest golf course. Described by Bermudian golfers as "a real gem" and "the course you must play". Winding along a peninsula, which at its widest measures only some 600 yards, the 5800 yards of this par 70, 18-hole course offers scenic delights and plenty of challenges, including two ponds and three ocean holes. These scenic links provide the golfer with a magnificent challenge for his or her game and camera.
The Riddell’s Bay Golf Course was originally designed by architect Devereux Emmet who shortly afterwards built the Congressional near Washington, D.C., site of the 1997 U.S Open. Just as Congressional was remodeled by Robert Trent Jones and again more recently, by his son Rees Trent Jones, so is Riddell’s Bay gradually acquiring a new look, intended to make the best of contemporary course design, brought about by constantly higher standards of play as well as greatly improved golf equipment, clubs and balls. The compactness of the existing course would provide a challenge to any golf course architect – one that was taken up by Ed Beidel. Emmet designed his first course, the Island Golf Links (a forerunner to Garden City GC), upon his return from an extended trip to the great links of Scotland. His other early design work, including one for his own family’s estate at Sherewogue and Cherry Valley (built on property belonging to his father-in-law), was done at no charge. Later he became a professional golf course architect and accepted fees for his work.
The 1st hole on this course is unquestionably the most difficult opener on any of the island’s nine courses with a dog leg right to an elevated green.
The 2nd hole starts the many views of the sound and if you are going to score well on the front this is where you begin.
The 8th hole, a dogleg right, is the one to watch for and where scoring may take a break for accuracy. If you’re accurate, you shoot in to a green that’s surrounded by water. If you’re not, never mind: You’ve just added to the Great Sound’s Grand Golf Ball Collection. From this hole you can see the benevolent gaze of Gibbs Hill Lighthouse – maybe it can cast light on the subject.
The 9th hole through the 11th are where you learn the finer art of playing a shot-makers course as length is second to position. The 12th hole is the most recent renovation where fairway bunkering, water off the tee and again behind the green, are the hazards to stay away from. The 13th and 14th holes offer some links style challenges with the 15th always being a good par.
The 16th hole sets up well for a birdie with a good drive off the tee. A birdie that can be given back very quickly on the 17th…which is most definitely the most challenging par 3.
The 18th hole brings together many of the lessons you have learned…keep the ball in play off the tee, stay out of the green side bunkers and enjoy the finishing hole with the attractive and definitely bermudian clubhouse in the back ground.