"From its humble origins in Louisiana and Oklahoma to its newest communities in Europe and the Caribbean, Landmark's focus has been on creating well-planned communities in beautiful places, with the highest quality amenities, to create a better lifestyle for its residents."
WHILE LANDMARK LAND COMPANY, INC. has a history dating back to 1865 as the Godchaux Sugar Company, the modern golf community development company began in 1971 when Gerald Barton took control of Godchaux and changed its name to Landmark Land. Barton's concept was to create a residential development company that would turn large parcels of land into well-planned, amenity-rich communities that would replicate the small-town American experiencean improvement over the typical suburban development of the 1970s.
The key component to this concept was the development of golf as an amenity that increased residential values, created open space for the community and provided distinction and activity as well as community gathering space. A team was assembled to design, develop and operate the highest quality golf clubs and resorts in America.
Over the span over nearly 30 years, Landmark has constructed 17 Pete Dye-designed golf courses, more than any company in history. These courses formed the foundation of a development company that has created more prestigious golf course communities than any other firm in the world. Landmark has also attracted the most celebrated golf tournaments and competitions in America, notably the 1991 Ryder Cup at Kiawah Island, South Carolina.
Timeline: A 40-Year Overview
1971Belle Terre Country Club, La Place, Louisiana
Located in the heart of Landmark's extensive inherited holdings of sugar-cane producing acreage outside New Orleans, Belle Terre was the centerpiece of an entire master-planned town. The community, with schools, commercial centers and industrial parks, was begun to serve the needs of the industrial growth along the Mississippi River between New Orleans and Baton Rouge. The Belle Terre Country Club and its Pete Dye-designed golf course provide a quality golf experience to the town's residents.
1974Oak Tree Golf & Country Club, Edmond, Oklahoma
Landmark's first golf course community was focused around a Pete Dye masterpiece that has since hosted the U.S. Amateur and the PGA Championship. The 1,400-acre community, located 30 miles north of Oklahoma City, is planned for 2,000 homes and features 54 holes of golf as well as extensive swimming tennis and fitness facilities. Oak Tree is the home of Landmark's corporate logo, a magnificent specimen with a huge spreading crown.
1977La Quinta Resort & Club, La Quinta, California
Landmark's first community in California was centered around the 66-room La Quinta Hotel, a legendary hideaway for Hollywood stars originally built in 1926. Gracefully expanded in the 1970s and ‘80s, La Quinta grew to encompass more than 1,200 acres with three Pete Dye-designed layouts, including the top-rated Mountain Course. Rounding out this greater Palm Springs fixture are 4,000 home sites, a 605-room hotel and arguably the most beautiful tennis club in the world.
1981Mission Hills Country Club, Rancho Mirage, California
Home of the LPGA Kraft Nabisco Championship, Mission Hills has long been one of the premier private communities in the Palm Springs area. Spread across 1,600 acres, the community includes 3,700 homes, the Dinah Shore tournament course designed by Desmond Muirhead, and other quality courses laid out by Pete Dye and Arnold Palmer.
1985Carmel Valley Ranch, Carmel, California
On a beautiful 1,800-acre site bordered by the Santa Lucia Mountains and the Carmel River, Landmark was able to satisfy stringent environmental conditions to entitle a golf community with 500 homes, a 100-unit lodge and a Pete Dye-designed golf course. Covered in oak trees, with panoramic views of the Monterey Peninsula, Carmel Valley Ranch defines the northern California lifestyle.
1988PGA West, La Quinta, California
The first collaborative effort between the PGA of America and the PGA Tour, PGA West quickly became one of the most talked-about golf destinations in the West. An ambitious development of over 2,500 acres with 6,000 planned homes, PGA West, longtime host of the Skins Game and the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic, has six championship golf courses designed by five of the game's top designers: Pete Dye, Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Tom Weiskopf and Greg Norman.
1989Palm Beach Polo & Country Club, West Palm Beach, Florida
The home of high-goal polo in America, Landmark immediately set out to broaden the quality of the community after purchasing the Palm Beach Polo Club in the mid-1980s. The club's Pete and P.B. Dye-designed golf course has hosted several PGA Tour events, while the 120-acre Palm Beach Polo Equestrian Club hosts the Winter Equestrian Festival, currently the nation's largest and richest grand prix jumping event.
1991Kiawah Island Golf Resort, Kiawah Island, South Carolina
After purchasing the resort properties on Kiawah Island, including three golf courses, Landmark immediately established Kiawah's identity as the East Coast's premier golf destination thorough the development of the Pete Dye-designed Ocean Course, which hosted the 1991 Ryder Cup matches. The fiercely contested competition, known as the "War by the Shore," was moved from PGA West to Kiawah for better European television coverage and established the Ryder Cup as one of golf's top events.
1994South Padre Island Golf Club, Laguna Vista, Texas
An 1,800-acre community on the Laguna Madre Bay, South Padre Island Golf Club is a 27-hole facility designed by Landmark's golf division, with a fourth nine in the planning stages. The community has a variety of residential products, from fairway villas to waterfront marina townhomes. The golf course, home of the Texas Senior Open, has quickly become a favorite in south Texas.
2000Lost Canyons Golf Club, Simi Valley, California
Landmark's most recent collaborative project with Pete Dye is a spectacular 36-hole public golf facility in Simi Valley an hour's drive north of Los Angeles. Both the Sky and Shadow courses at Lost Canyons were selected by Golf Magazine as "Top 10 New Courses You Can Play" in America. The layouts, set on 1,800 acres with little adjacent housing, present a beautiful natural environment and outstanding mountain views.
2002Doonbeg Golf Club, County Clare, Ireland
Developed by Kiawah Development Partners in association with Landmark, Doonbeg Golf Club is an outstanding example of a development that benefits the environment as well as the local community. On a stunning oceanfront site in County Clare, Ireland an hour's drive from Shannon, the Landmark team created a plan that preserved the sand dunes, restored the environmental integrity of the site and provided needed jobs to the community. The resort showcases Greg Norman's finest golf course design to date.
2006Arcos Gardens, Andalucia, Spain
Developed by Landmark Spain, Arcos Gardens is a low-density, second-home community located in a beautiful and historic part of Andalucia in southern Spain. The 18-hole golf course, designed by Landmark's golf division, is routed through meandering streams in a grove of 100-year-old olive trees. Arcos Gardens is Landmark's first community in continental Europe.
2007Lake Presidential Golf Club, Upper Marlboro, Maryland
Tucked away on more than 1,200 acres of rolling, wooded land with a sparkling lake as its centerpiece, Lake Presidential, convenient to the Baltimore, Annapolis and Washington, D.C. markets, had a soft opening in fall, 2007. The 7,230-yard course, designed by Landmark and destined to become one of the region's finest upscale daily-fee venues, will formally open in May, 2008.
2008Apes Hill Club, St. James, Barbados, B.W.I.
Set on a former sugarcane plantation on the island's crest, this 470-acre golf and polo community boasts a two-way view of the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea. Deep tropical ravines, broad rolling pastures and coral stone quarries characterize the spectacular Landmark-designed golf course. Slated to debut in late 2008, the low-density Apes Hill community, embraced by a nature preserve, will comprise a Bajan-themed collection of single-family homes and cluster units.