The charms of Azalea Sands are readily apparent and easy to appreciate. Golf battles the perception that it's to difficult and takes to long, problems the Gene Hamm design openly combats.
With generous fairways, widened by a tree removal project in recent years, playability is a primary selling point at Azalea Sands. The layout allows golfers the latitude to swing away off the tee without the fear of facing an overly penal design.
The course's open nature helps ensure pace of play is among the best in the area, in addition to giving players a chance to score. Don't mistake playability for being a pushover. Azalea Sands, which can stretch to nearly 7,000 yards, challenges players of all skill levels.
Just past its 40th birthday, management at Azalea has been dedicated to ensuring the facility's continued improvement. Currently the course is building two new holes that will make the layout a par 71 (it's currently a par 72) and installing a new driving range that will open in the summer of 2016.
Neither project impacts play on a course that is devoid of housing, allowing golfers to enjoy a crisp pace while knowing things are only getting better at this “Golden Oldie.”