Unlike the commoners in Camelot who peer up the hill at the castle and "wonder what the king is doing tonight," players at the best new daily fee course near Detroit are granted a place at court without forfeiting a king's ransom. To wit: The Wyndgate in Rochester Hills, Michigan, has been for a decade the area's most gilded private club. Last fall Westwynd at Wyndgate was christened on the same grounds. Designed by Craig Schreiner, this hilly, fescued 6,902-yard links is a shot maker's delight and a smart complement to the lush, parkland Wyndgate.
The hope is that offering Westwynd customers similarly royal treatment as Wyndgate members—golf-club valet, ten-minute starting times, a gourmet grill and fitness center in the Colonial-style clubhouse—will turn some of the former group into the latter. The country club has spots available: All that's required for a membership is to add three zeros to Westwynd's $75 greens fee.
"We want families to feel comfortable and welcome at Westwynd, and get them used to the course as a gathering place," says Kevin Muir, director of golf for both facilities. This could be a new trend: In spring 2004, Newport National in Rhode Island will open a public course—Brad Faxon's first design project—to complement its members-only layout.
—Michael Patrick Shiels
Greens Fee: $75. Tee Times: 248-608-7820 or visit thewyndgate.com.