California Golf Club of San Francisco

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Originally incorporated in 1918, the California Golf Club moved from its Ingleside location to its present site in 1924.Referred to as the Baden property after Baden Farms, the new site was well removed from what then constituted the city of San Francisco. The California Golf Club hired the Scot Willie Locke to do the original routing and the opportunity presented to him was excellent as the Baden property measured over 550 acres. The final site that Locke chose was full of interesting land forms and possessed views of Mount Diablo (the tee shots and/or approaches at the sixth, eleventh, fourteenth, and seventeenth line up on it), Mount Tamalpais, San Bruno Mountain, and the San Francisco Bay to the east.

In 1928, Alistair MacKenzie and Robert Hunter of the American Golf Company were retained by the club. Unfortunately, there is no historical record as to why the club would hire a different architect just two years after opening.

In the 1960’s the club appeared on the list of 200 “toughest” golf courses in Golf Digest. Around 1965 however, the State of California came calling with an eminent domain action that would impact the club dramatically. The plan was to create a new street, Westborough Blvd., off of the new 280 Freeway being built immediately west of the course. Westborough Blvd. today forms the northern boundary of the property.

Years of deferred maintenance, cost cutting and amateur tinkering began to erode the grandeur of the original design. In April 2007, the California Golf Club and it’s membership would decide to undergo a major renovation of the club. The renovation project began in April 2007 and was completed 18 months later in July 2008. The renovation project was lead by designer Kyle Phillips.

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