PLYMOUTH – Award-winning Raymond Hearn Golf Course Designs, Inc., plans to create a new and unique destination golf experience at Detroit’s luxury destination resort, The Inn at St. John’s.
“We are thrilled to be working with The Inn at St. John’s,” Raymond Hearn, president of his Holland-based firm, said after recently being awarded the project.
“Our golf course Master Plan offers strategy and fun for all types of golfers from professionals to beginners and every skill type in between. It will fit perfectly with their incredible first-class facilities that host a wide variety of dynamic events and conferences.”
Plans include the creation of an 18-hole championship course with a five-tee system by combining newly designed holes and remodeling some existing holes over what is currently a 27-hole golf facility. The complex will include a beautiful and family-fun nine-hole par 3 course and a state-of-the-art 18-hole natural grass putting course. The golf complex will offer a perfect venue for corporate events and team building along with wedding parties playing 18 holes on the championship course and sipping Champagne on the 18-hole putting course prior to their events.
The championship course will include new risk/reward options on the golf holes, new greens, new strategic sand bunkers with top-of-the line sand and liners, imaginative fairway contours, advance cultivars of bentgrass for the putting greens, collars and fairways, a new state-of-the-art irrigation system, extensive new drainage, a new irrigation reservoir, new and remodeled asphalt cart paths as well as tree removal and a few tree additions. Hearn will break ground in spring 2022 and is aiming with The Inn at St. John’s for the grand opening fall 2023.
“The synergy of this new truly unique golf experience coupled with Michigan’s premiere resort facilities will make this luxury destination even more of a shining star for golfers, travelers, guests, families, conventions and events in Southeast Michigan, the State of Michigan and throughout the Great Lakes Region,” Hearn said. “It will be remarkable.”
The Inn at St. John’s is located in the west suburbs of Detroit and within a 30-minute drive of the Renaissance City of Detroit and Detroit Metropolitan Airport. It was purchased by the Pulte Family Foundation from The Archdiocese last August in honor of William Pulte, who helped finance the property’s transition from a seminary campus in the 1990s. Hearn has been involved in recent years with the Inn on golf projects, and the property includes a popular Carl’s Golfland modern golf practice and retail facility.
“The golf course Ray is creating is part of elevating our entire property to the next level,” explained Paul Wegert, CEO of Boutique Hotel Professionals and Managing Director of The Inn at St. John’s. “The Pulte Family Management SJ purchased the resort with plans to expand and elevate the property in several ways. Projects underway include transforming all the exterior landscaping and parking lots, adding a 15,000 square foot ballroom, upgrading our existing ballrooms, and adding an outdoor four-season pavilion that is perfect for golf outings, non-denominational weddings, and corporate events. Ultimately all profits from The Inn at St. John’s will be donated to the Pulte Family Charitable Foundation to support their mission.
“We’re Detroit’s destination resort. There’s nothing like this in metro Detroit. We are on 200-plus acres of land. Carl’s Golfland is a great partner that gives us a golf identity and having the championship course and facilities Ray is planning in addition to the new pro shop and new seasonal restaurant for golfers creates something collectively that no one else in this part of the state can offer.”
Hearn, whose firm is celebrating 25 years of excelling in golf course architecture, has garnered an international reputation of quality with five American Society of Golf Course Architects (ASGCA) Design Excellence Awards since 2012.
“This combines two parts of our business – renovation and new course design and we’re excited to showcase what we can do as a veteran golf course design firm,” Hearn said. “The commitment to the community and the property from the Pulte family is special and we want to match that with what we create.”