THE TRIBUTE GOLF CLUB – The Colony, TX
B+ – Playability & Challenge
B – Quality of Course
B – Memorability
A – Service Levels
B+ – Pro Shop
A – 19th Hole Experience
B+ – OVERALL EXPERIENCE
(Written by Brian Birdwell) … After playing numerous times at Tour 18, a replica course that simulates 18 of the top holes from well known US courses, some friends and I decided to try out the Tribute Golf Club to see what the European links style simulation course in the DFW area had to offer. The location (in the middle of no where) had the look of a links style course, flatter than Calista Flockhart’s chest and not many trees in sight. It just so happened on the morning we were playing it was overcast and some drizzle had decided to move in on us setting the stage for what would end up being a true Scottish links experience in North Texas.
Since we had under-estimated the drive time to the course, we didn’t get a chance to hit any balls on the range but that is where I usually waste all my good shots for the day anyway. So we jumped into the carts and headed to number one with a cup of coffee and newly lit cigarette — ready to dominate this links course. How hard could links
style golf really be? After a double bogey on the first hole, a replica of the opening par-4 at St. Andrews, I decided it was time to put on my game face, and look for the cart girl.
Keep in mind that the elements are not such in North Texas that gorse can grow like it does in Scotland so the rough was not nearly what you would see on TV on most of these courses. Due to abundance of rain and what appeared to be a ‘mow once a month’ greens keeper strategy, it was still very thick and if you got in it, your best bet was to just try to get back out onto the fairway or risk breaking a wrist.
The fairways and the greens were in very good shape. Although it was a great golfing experience, some of the holes lacked some of the necessary elements to gain the true aura of some of the great holes you see at various British Open courses. There was not enough water to simulate some of the holes and at the time I played the course (2002) there were not many burns on the course which make so many of these holes so treacherous. They did a good job on the bunkers. Some of them were so deep you could not even see out of them (or get out of them … without a hand toss for those of us who just can not make a sand wedge hit a ball straight up eight feet off sand).
Since it was some time ago when I played the Tribute, I do not remember many of the holes in detail but I do remember the last, a replica hole of number 18 at St. Andrews. It was so similar you feel like you are there (especially on this dreary day we played the course). The fairway is tight with trouble all along the right side and nasty rough all along the left. For a relatively short hole, I was surprised it took me five shots to even reach the green before sinking a twenty foot putt for double bogey. The 18th at the old course at St. Andrews.
All in all, The Tribute Golf Club provided a great golfing experience that not only was challenging to even a skilled golfer, it also provided an enriching experience to a true golf fanatic. You can learn about each of these famous holes along the way, then try to match your skills to that of the pros you have watched play these holes time and time again. …