Sea Island: Southern charm with oceanside views

The Lodge at Sea Island

During a recent visit to Sea Island, I was sitting at the bar at the Sea Strike and Pub located at the Beach Club.

I had just arrived onsite, and I found myself bellied up to the bar at 4 p.m., in that no-man’s-land zone between lunch and dinner and craving a happy hour concoction and a small bite. 

The bartender was setting up his station for the day, and I noticed he was stuffing some blue cheese olives and it really caught my attention.  First, it struck a chord with me as all of a sudden a dirty martini sounded like the perfect way to get my body into vacation mode after traveling all day.  Second, the method in which he was stuffing this olive with a surgical-like attention to detail by utilizing a bag like you’d see a master pastry chef use to design the border of a decadent cake had me captivated. 

I had to ask for him to fill me in on this process, and he told me that his team had figured out a process to melt the blue cheese to the optimal temperature so it could perfectly fill the hole in the olive with blue cheese at the optimal consistency for guests to enjoy. 

Ladies and gentlemen, that is next level attention to detail.  As you can imagine, my martini was delicious, and I love this story as it is a perfect example of how the service level provided at Sea Island is as impeccable as it comes. You’ll find that level of detail in everything you encounter during your trip to Sea Island as a satisfying cocktail made to perfection is just the tip of the iceberg. 

Speedway Putting Course

Tour level facilities for all 

There are a few select locations around the United States that are a haven to the elite members of the PGA Tour.  Some that come to mind are Seminole Golf Club, The Bear’s Club, Whisper Rock, Isleworth, and Lake Nona.  But there’s also another thing these courses have in common: they are all private courses with extremely limited access that you likely can’t step foot on. 

That’s not the case at Sea Island.  You can play the same courses and utilize the same facilities as PGA Tour professionals who call Sea Island their home including Davis Love III, Matt Kuchar, Zach Johnson, Keith Mitchell, Harris English, Brian Harman, Patton Kizzire, J.T. Poston, Hudson Swafford and Michael Thompson just to name a few.  These pros chose to make Sea Island their home as it provides them with the top-level comforts of a Forbes Five-Star facility, world-class setup to hone their game and a level of comfortable luxury that is arguably unmatched. 

Sea Island never rests on its laurels, and they have continued to make significant investments in the resort experience especially as it pertains to golf stay and play packages. 

One of these improvements was the development of the 17,000-square-foot Golf Performance Center.  You’ve never seen a more sophisticated facility than this, and there isn’t a facet of your game that they haven’t come up with a way to improve.  This includes: 

  • Golf instruction with state-of-the-art hitting bays to analyze every aspect of your swing led by the iconic Jack Lumpkin alongside a large team of swing gurus 
  • Golf fitness studio and programs led by golf fitness expert Randy Meyers 
  • A deep dive into the mental aspects of your game with Dr. Morris Pickens 
  • The coolest putting studio we’ve ever seen led by putting expert Phil Kenyon 
  • A top-level club fitting to make sure your gear is as on-point as your game will be after some time spent with their experts 

Tacking on some time during your trip to dial in your game will not only pay dividends on your getaway, but it will also help you take a few extra dollars off your friends back home on a weekly basis. 

Golf Performance Center

Golf goes to the next level 

The Seaside Course at Sea Island is exceptional.  This masterpiece was redesigned by Tom Fazio to give this oceanside links golf course a few nips and tucks in a way that only Fazio could provide to maintain its natural look and feel while also being breathtakingly beautiful. 

The team at Sea Island wanted to update the Plantation Course to be on-par with the experience that golfers receive on Seaside, and we have to say: mission accomplished. 

In 2019, Sea Island brought in local legends Davis Love III and his brother Mark Love to undertake this task.  Davis and Mark grew up playing at Sea Island because their father Davis Love, Jr. became a teaching professional here in 1977.  This wasn’t just a job to them; it was a way to honor their father and the legacy he created at Sea Island.  That personal touch can be felt throughout your round as the brothers did a phenomenal job giving the course the traditional vibe of the original Walter Travis nine-hole design while adding in some modern design features and incredible ocean views to bring the course into the modern era in a scenic way. 

Designed to be enjoyed by both resort guests and members alike, the Plantation Course tips out at only 6,671 yards, but you’ll quickly find that that course plays longer than that as you’ll be faced with many risk/reward scenarios that can quickly add a birdie or a double bogey to your scorecard. 

When you combine Seaside and Plantation with the player-friendly design of the Retreat Course, you get the perfect 1-2-3 combination for a golf getaway that will make you the envy of all your friends. 

The Seaside Course

A focus on buddy golf trips

If you haven’t had the pleasure of visiting Sea Island yet, then you might not be aware of how expansive and massive this resort is.  There are multiple lodging options available including The Cloister, a world-famous resort that exudes luxury and Southern charm throughout with a touch of coastal flavor, especially in The Cloister Beach Club and The Cloister Ocean Residences.  We absolutely love this portion of the resort and could not recommend it more highly, but when it comes to buddies golf trips The Lodge is our recommended option for you and your crew. 

The Lodge serves as the hub of almost all the golf assets at Sea Island as both the Plantation Course and the Seaside Course are located adjacent to The Lodge as well as the Golf Performance Center.  The Lodge provides a boutique hotel experience with only 43 rooms available, and each room is extremely well appointed and features 24-hour butler service to continue the theme of providing exceptional service at every turn as is customary at Sea Island. 

In addition to the rooms available in the main lodge, the resort has also added seven new golf-in, golf-out Cottages at The Lodge including the 4-bedroom King Cottage.  The King Cottage was a reconfiguration of the original performance center, and this ultimate group getaway set up comes complete with its own hitting bay in it! 

Another highlight of The Lodge is the new Speedway Putting Course, an 18-hole putting course located on the backside of The Lodge where you can down a Transfusion (or any other beverage of your choice) as you and your friends make your way around this perfect amenity to end your day.  Try to time this around sunset and you’ll be able to enjoy the bagpiper playing a tune at sundown as the perfect way to cap off your day at Sea Island. 

As if these service levels weren’t enough, Sea Island also has designated team members to handle golf groups of 11 or less, as well as groups of 12 or more.  These representatives can help guide your way to help you maximize your group’s experience during your getaway at Sea Island. 

The Lodge is our preferred recommendation for golf groups heading to Sea Island, but if your budget is a little tighter and you need to save a few dollars, be sure to check out The Inn at Sea Island.  Located a short drive away from the golf courses, The Inn features a TopGolf hitting bay in the lobby as well as extremely comfortable rooms.  The Inn more closely resembles what you’d expect from a standard hotel experience but done the Sea Island way, so you know that everything is kicked up a notch as even these value-priced rooms still exude luxury.

The Cloister


If top-level, PGA Tour-quality golf, exceptional service, and southern luxury are of interest to you, then this is your place.  Sea Island is conveniently located in coastal Georgia just north of the Florida/Georgia border, and in addition to being an easy drive from pretty much anywhere in the Southeast, Sea Island also has plenty of direct flight access from most major markets into either the Jacksonville International Airport (JAX) or into the Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport (SAV).  Additional fly-in options include several flights per day from the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) to the Brunswick Golden Isles Airport (BQK) located only 20 minutes away from the resort, or for those looking to fly private the McKinnon St. Simons Island Airport (SSI) is located across the street from the Lodge for the ultimate level of expediency.

This convenient location is not only easy to get in and out of, but it also provides the perfect climate for golf all year-round for you and your group to enjoy. 

The Lodge Cottages