Episode 1 – hammock beach

In this first main episode of Let’s Play Thru we travel to Hammock Beach Club & Resort in Palm Coast, Florida, and visit a few of the local attractions to give us an experience beyond the golf course. The Hammock Beach property itself is magnificent; The resort consists of an array of condominiums that are individually owned and rented out to visitors. There is a private beach exclusively for the Club members and guests, a spa and fitness facility, multiple dining options and of course the golf club.

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Interview with membership director

Gabe sits down with Marianne Nicholson who is the membership director of Hammock Beach, and we learn a little more about the club. Hear her thoughts on the Club and learn about the grass on the golf course that can be watered with sea water! She knows every member by name and is a crucial figure in the composition of the club at Hammock Beach. Marianne takes us into one of the resort towers and we check out our accommodation which is INCREDIBLE. We had a three-bedroom condo with huge living areas and kitchen areas and a breathtaking balcony overlooking the 18th hole of The Ocean Course, as well as the Atlantic Ocean.

The Club at Hammock Beach

After dropping our bags in the room we head out to the Ocean Course which is a Jack Nicklaus signature designed course, and features a handful of holes that play along the Atlantic Ocean, it’s absolutely breathtaking. The condition of the course, the layout, the aesthetics are all meticulously managed and maintained and it is a privilege to play here. We play a little nearest the pin action from 100 yards, and Wade has a slight meltdown which is always fun to watch. Marianne even joins us and show us all up when she puts on a putting exhibition!! Every hole is exceptional, in fact so good that Pat and Wade carried on playing into the evening. It’s worth mentioning that The Club at Hammock Beach also has another course, The Conservatory Course which is slightly inland and a much more tree lined, tighter course. We didn’t play it on this occasion but it is an exceptional course. For a resort to be able to boast two world class golf courses, it really makes Hammock Beach a real treat for any golf fan looking to visit.

The Fountain of Youth in St. Augustine

The next day we head to The Fountain of Youth in historic St. Augustine. The town of St. Augustine is very unique and truly unlike anywhere else in the state of Florida. It has a Spanish influence and the buildings are very distinct, possibly none more so than Flagler College and the beautiful buildings that compose their campus. The Fountain of Youth is a short drive from both downtown St. Augustine and Hammock Beach resort. During your visit you will encounter some interesting wildlife such as the peacocks that freely roam around, but also some interesting attractions highlighting the way of life when settlers first landed in this area. An original canon fires on the hour, you can enjoy a blacksmith show, a crossbow firing, and much more. The main attraction however is The Fountain of Youth. The fountain itself is Florida’s oldest attraction dating back to 1868. Legend has it that Ponce De Leon landed here and declared this to be the actual fountain of youth. We grab a cup and try some of this water fresh from the spring and it is certainly an interesting taste….

The St. Augustine Distillery

The final stop on our trip was right up Wade’s wheelhouse! We headed to the St. Augustine Distillery where we met Matt Stevens who gave us an amazing tour and history lesson on the bourbon they produce. We were fortunate to see every step of the process and learn a lot of interesting information on our trip through the distillery. After exploring the production facilities, we head to the main shop for a tasting session. The guys tried a few different samples of bourbon which were absolutely fantastic, along with a few different cocktail mixed bourbon drinks which again were a delight for the palate. It’s worth noting that the St. Augustine Distillery don’t strictly produce bourbon, but also gin, rum, and vodka spirits. It was a fantastic final stop on our Palm Coast adventure and well worth visiting if you’re ever in the vicinity of St. Augustine. For good measure Gabe and Wade made sure to buy a few bottles to take for the ride home!

Closing Verdict

WOW! What a trip that was. The Palm Coast is beautiful in itself, and Hammock Beach Club & Resort is the perfect place to enjoy this part of Florida. From a golf perspective you could not imagine a better facility, and our golf addict Pat is dying to come back and give the Conservatory Course a try now. The accommodation was comfortable and luxurious, you actually have several dining options on site, and the resort has amenities to cater for the entire family. St. Augustine is a gorgeous historic city and visits to The Fountain of Youth and the St. Augustine distillery will compliment your trip here perfectly.

All links to the locations we filmed during this episode are listed right here:

Hammock Beach Resort & Club - https://www.hammockbeach.com/

The Fountain of Youth - https://www.fountainofyouthflorida.com/

St Augustine Distillery - http://staugustinedistillery.com/