Centennial Golf Course is a bit of a hike from central Manhattan, a little over an hour, but it is a trip well worth it. Take a myriad of roads up to Carmel, New York and you will quickly discover the landscape of the Hudson Valley seems perfect for a golf course. In fact, three-time major championship winner and Centennial course designer Larry Nelson said exactly that:
“This land is the most naturally suited to golf I have ever seen.”
Pulling up to Centennial you see a large white barn and intricate club house that is both welcoming and well designed with an open layout. Larry Nelson sure did his homework on this one. The club house area sits nestled in the base of a valley with gorgeous lush holes sprawling out towards the hills and in from the meadows.
Driving range and multiple short game practice areas surround the facility and definitely set the mood for a serious golf course. A serious golf course it is. Centennial has three nines; Lakes, Fairways and Meadows. All nines are par 36 and the length can be challenging yet competitive for all golfers. Any combination of nines from the white tees will be approximately 6,000 yards, from the blues 6,600 and from the black or tips 7,000.
Conditions once out on the course are faultless. In the summer time the greens are glassy fast. A foursome that has not played Centennial before is definitely due for a few three putts. The greens are full of undulations and tiers. You may land an approach near the pin but seconds later it could be 40 feet from the cup.
The Lakes course bends and twists through a hillside with some dramatic elevation change and being true to its name has several water hazards to negotiate. Meadows and Fairways level out a little but are still challenging yet scoreable. Every hole can be your best friend or worst enemy. Centennial calls for tee shot management, command over your irons and a creative short game due to the tricky greens.
One blemish on the near perfect day was sadly the pace of play. There were many unexpected waits in between holes and at a course of this price and caliber it was a bit unsettling for an early morning round. The ranger was out there but outside of revving his gas cart in backswings and relieving himself awkwardly close to a tee box not sure much was being done to manage the pace of play.
Back at the clubhouse; indulge yourself at the Grille room, with its charming classic golf club look (light wood bar and tables accompanied by a questionable carpet selection) with a robust menu filled with post round staples. Staff is friendly and eager to accommodate your food and beverage needs. Enjoy a club sandwich or burger on the veranda and watch the golfers come in with their heads held high or contemplating a switch to bowling.
You will also find locker rooms and a well stocked pro shop. Although, outside of the emergency sleeve of balls or glove head online for your equipment needs. TGW.com has an industry wide selection of equipment at very competitive prices.
Albeit on the pricier side at $135 for a weekend morning round, Centennial offers the total experience that moderate to serious golfers desire.