Golf Course Architecture

Golf Course Design & Consultation

Golf Course Construction Supervision

Environmental Impact Studies


Golf Course Architecture




The aim of the Golf Course Architect is to create a truly great golf course by utilizing to the fullest extent possible the potential of a promising piece of land. This potential is expressed in the site's location, slope, vegetation, water features, soil types, climate and orientation.

The Golf Course Architect's role is the realization of this potential under the constraints of design criteria that separate the truly great golf course from the ordinary.

For instance, each nine holes should open and close at the clubhouse. The course should be challenging and interesting, but not necessarily penalizing. There should be a welcoming and interesting blend of par 3's, 4's, and 5's, as well as a variety of lengths, orientations, and situations inherent in the fairway arrangement. The ability to capitalize on unique views or significant terrain features, without monumental and costly alterations to the site, is another big plus. A really good architect can tell, during his first walk-through, whether a particular site is intended for a spectacular golf course or not.

The image above is a Digital Terrain Model (DTM) of a course I designed. It allows me to design in 3-D, and can be taken to any degree of completion I or the client wishes. It allows views from any perspective or angle, and allows panning, walkthroughs, or fly-overs on any of the fairways. It can be a very effective tool to show how a course may look long before any physical work is done, as it shows true existing elevations and true proposed elevation changes, and how design features will relate to those changes.


You may visit one of the courses Golf Course Architect, John Francis Yuhas, has worked on, at www.Links-at-sunset-ridge.com, if you wish. Or, if you want to see it in person, and play it, it's located exactly 1 mile east of Marcellus, NY, about 15 minutes west of Syracuse, on the south side of West Seneca Turnpike (I-175 ). With its unique plan of six par 3's, six par 4's, and six par 5's, and its 4-tee per fairway setup, be prepared to use every club in your bag, no matter what your level of golfing skill. (You may view layout of this course and some photos of it by clicking on "Golf Course Design" tab on selection bar to left.)

After 18 holes, you may want to sit on the elevated deck of the spacious 8000 square foot clubhouse, where you will be treated to a view of half of the course's 162 acres, and watch the sun set in the mountains across scenic Nine Mile Creek Valley. It was called "The Links @ Sunset Ridge", but the name has been changed to the "Marcellus Golf Club". The ph. # is 315-673-2255.


John Francis Yuhas has completed a course in Elbridge, NY, 30 minutes west of Syracuse on NY State Rt. 5. It is located exactly 1 mile west of the Village of Elbridge, on the South side of Rt. 5. It is a championship grade 18-hole golf course weaving its way through 160-plus acres of former farmland, wooded area, and a unique wetland environment adjacent to Skaneateles Creek. You may want to bring your golf clubs and your fly rod when you come to this course. A par-5 530-yard Fairway 12 and a par-4 320-yard Fairway 14 cross a pristine Skaneateles Creek filled with Brown and Rainbow trout. A par-3 Fairway 18 island green, in the middle of a 7-acre, 9-million-gallon pond (lake?) with peninsula tees at ranges of 95, 135, and 185 yards awaits the daring. A 120-yard par-3 Fairway 6 with a 90' vertical drop feels like you're hitting from the top tier of Giants Stadium and trying to stick it on a 30-yard-diameter circle on the field. This course is  called "Millstone". If you'd like to see some sequential, hi-res, photos taken during construction of this course, and as it looks now, click on the "Golf Course Construction Supervision" tab in the selection bar to left, or below.

John Francis Yuhas has signed on to do a thorough redesign and expansion to 18 holes, of a current 9 hole course in Rome, NY. Three existing ponds will be enlarged and improved. Two new large ponds will be constructed. The clubhouse has already been renovated and expanded. Parking area will be redesigned and doubled in size. Forty-nine housing lots, all with magnificent views of the course, have been designed, and construction has begun. This new facility, when completed, will be called the "Beaver Creek Golf Club & Estates".


John Francis Yuhas recently began work on a new championship-grade 18-hole golf course on "Reserve Isle at South Riders Caye", in Belize. It is called "Black Orchid", the black orchid being the National Flower of Belize. Black Orchid is on an island (shown above left) 1.5 miles NNE of Belize City, and 13 miles SW of Caye Chapel. The first nine holes will be created on man-made islets SW of the main island, and will be linked with non-obtrusive causeways, creating a lily-pad effect. The second nine holes will be located inland, and give many of the residential properties exceptional views of the course, while also offering "water" play, including a unique "island-within-an-island" green on the par-3 17th fairway. The course will utilize the Architect's famous 3-3-3 format with 3 par 3s, 3 par 4s, and 3 par 5s for each nine holes. The entire design is a little shorter than usual, but is approached with the idea of creating as environmentally friendly a course as possible in its setting, with no impact on the eco-systems of the area. The reefs and mangroves will remain untouched. Paspalum grasses, which are salt tolerant, and can even be irrigated with salt water, will be used, in different hybrid varieties, for tees, greens, and fairways. The course, in addition to being a beautiful seaside championship-grade course appealing to traditionalists, will also be designed for use as a setting for Extreme Golf and Disc (Frisbee) Golf, both of which are growing in popularity. This unique approach will lend itself to one of the most unique Caribbean-style golf courses anyone has ever seen, or played. Reserve Isle will also have a luxurious clubhouse/hotel, condominiums, a market plaza, villas, an interior lake and marina, a 5000' airstrip, a ferry landing, and 128 beautifully configured residential lots.

Click on the thumbnail above right to see a full-scale plan for Reserve Isle.


See Photos of Golf Course Construction Progress




Copyright 1998-2015 JOHN F. YUHAS - GOLF COURSE ARCHITECT, last updated April 13, 2017

For comments, questions, requests for proposals (RFPs) Contact:

John F. Yuhas, Golf Course Architect, P. O. Box 90, 1612 Yuhas Drive, Sterling, NY 13156,  or 315-947-9948, or johnfyuhas@yahoo.com


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