Golf > Golf History

Golf History At The Greenbrier

For more than a century, The Greenbrier has been synonymous with world class golf, a tradition that grows with each season.

The Old White Course

Originally designed and constructed by Charles Blair Macdonald and Seth Raynor in 1914, The Old White has stood the test of time and is still considered one of the finest courses in the United States more than 100 years later.

The course recently saw a major restoration project after a catastrophic weather event in 2016. The Old White received new fairways, new bunkers and new green complexes, and changes were made to return the course as close as possible to its original design.

The Meadows Course

The Meadows Course began as a 9-hole course named Lakeside. Designed by Alexander H. Findlay, it opened for play in 1911. In 1923, Seth Raynor redesigned the course while he was on the property updating The Old White TPC and building the original Greenbrier Course.

In 1962, Lakeside was expanded to an 18-hole routing by architect Dick Wilson, who used dirt excavated during the construction of The Bunker to expand the course. Years later, in 1999, Bob Cupp once again redesigned the golf course, at which point it officially became known at The Meadows.

After sustaining substantial damage during the flood of 2016, The Meadows underwent a full restoration and reopened for play during the summer of 2017. The new and exciting routing features dynamic green complexes, breathtaking mountain vistas and signature stacked sod bunkers throughout the course.

Guests have been extremely complimentary of the new layout of the challenging but fun course. 

The Greenbrier Course

The Greenbrier course was built in 1924 by Seth Raynor and renovated in 1977 by Jack Nicklaus. In 1979, it hosted The Ryder Cup and years later in 1994 was the host to The Solheim Cup. It is the only resort course in the world to have hosted both events. Following the redesign of the Meadows Course after the historic floods in 2016, The Greenbrier Course was left with 10 holes. Those holes may be played as a 9-hole loop or an 18-hole course. All Jack Nicklaus design elements remain in place. Future plans are to restore the course to an 18-hole layout.

The Greatest In The Game

From Hogan to Palmer and from Woods to Mickelson, most of golf’s greatest players have walked the lush fairways at The Greenbrier.

The name most connected with golf at America’s Resort is the PGA TOUR’s all-time wins leader, Sam Snead. The Virginia native was first hired as the Assistant Golf Professional at The Greenbrier in 1936. He then served as the Golf Professional from 1946 through 1974. Snead was rehired as the Golf Professional Emeritus in 1993 and remained in that position until his death in 2002. Snead’s pictures and memorabilia are prominently displayed throughout The Golf Club, and two restaurants, Sam Snead’s at The Golf Club and Slammin’ Sammy’s are named in his honor.
Two other golfing legends followed in Snead’s footsteps and held the Golf Professional Emeritus tag at The Greenbrier. Tom Watson held the position from 2005 through 2015, and Lee Trevino was the Golf Professional Emeritus from 2015 through 2017.
Current stars of the game also hold a close connection to The Greenbrier. Two-time Masters champion Bubba Watson is a regular visitor and a fantastic ambassador for the resort. Stuart Appleby — a nine-time PGA TOUR winner, who captured The Greenbrier Classic title in its inaugural year in 2010 — also serves as a spokesperson for golf at The Greenbrier.
In addition to these close ties, The Greenbrier has played host to other greats of the game on multiple occasions. Walter Hagen, Ben Hogan, Gene Sarazen, Byron Nelson, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus, Billy Casper, Nick Faldo, Bill Campbell and many others have played rounds at America’s Resort, and during the course of The Greenbrier Classic/A Military Tribute at The Greenbrier from 2010 through 2019, many of the games current stars, including Tiger Woods, Phil Mickleson, Bubba Watson, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Sergio Garcia and Jordan Spieth have also enjoyed rounds at America's Resort.

It’s not just stars of the game of golf that play The Old White, either. The course has hosted celebrities from all avenues, including Dwight Eisenhower, Bob Hope, Lou Gehrig, Billy Graham, Richard Nixon, Jerry West, Bing Crosby, Shaquille O’Neal, Larry Fitzgerald, Denny Hamlin, Drew Brees and many others.

The Biggest Events


The Greenbrier is no stranger to major events in the world of golf. The Greenbrier Open, which later became The Sam Snead Festival, was the first professional event played at The Greenbrier and hosted many of the game’s biggest legends. Arnold Palmer won his first professional money in that tournament in 1955.

In 1979, The Greenbrier was the host to the first Ryder Cup that matched the United States against Europe. That marked Lee Trevino’s first visit to America’s Resort.

From 1985 through 1987, The Greenbrier hosted The Greenbrier American Express Championship, a 54-hole Senior Tour event.

In 1994, The Greenbrier played host to the Solheim Cup, the women’s version of the Ryder Cup, becoming the first resort course to host both the Ryder Cup and the Solheim Cup.

From 2010 through 2019, The Old White Course has hosted A Military Tribute at The Greenbrier, formerly The Greenbrier Classic
At the heart of the golf offerings is The Greenbrier Golf Club.  Here, The Greenbrier features an award-winning pro shop, full practice facility, experienced caddies and a staff ready to deliver world class service. Dining is offered at Sam Snead's at The Golf Club, as well as refreshments and good times at Slammin' Sammy's. Memorablilia and pictures from Snead and others who have walked The Greenbrier's fairways and putted on the greens are on display throughout the locker room and clubhouse.

Learn more about the rich history of golf at The Greenbrier by booking a tee time and following in the footsteps of legends.

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