MONTROSE – The unparalleled beauty of Cornerstone’s setting atop the Uncompahgre Plateau is enough to set it apart from other mountain developments. But add to that a Greg Norman-designed golf course and be prepared for national recognition.
The January 2009 issue of Golf Magazine, currently on newsstands, has named Cornerstone the #1 Best New Private Golf Course in the country.
The 7,945-yard, par 72 course was touted by the editors at Golf Magazine as “easily the best high-altitude course in the nation, and quite possibly the world.” They called it Norman’s “finest North American project to date.” This prestigious recognition, which bested Donald Trump’s National Bedminster in New Jersey (#2), comes six months after all 18 holes were opened in July.
“This is something we are certainly proud of,” Head Golf Pro and Golf Manager Sean Tannehill said in an interview last week. “This is a golf course that is designed for everybody. My favorite thing about the course is the possibility of playing a multitude of different approaches, which enables a lot of bump and runs and a lot of great shots.”
The editors at Golf Magazine also made note of the way the course uses the natural landscape: “Purists will appreciate the tough forced carries and greens that often demand run-up approach shots, and the fast greens and shaved surrounds even things up for players of all abilities.”
The course was designed according to Norman’s well-known “least disturbance” philosophy, which curtails massive earth movement, reduces large-scale clearing and takes full advantage of the natural features on the landscape. The course covers more than 300 acres and is designed to provide golfers at all skill levels an enjoyable game.
“When Greg Norman first toured the land on snowmobile, he immediately saw the potential for the golf course and we partnered with him knowing that we had selected the best designer in the business,” said Larry Corsen, senior vice president of Hunt Realty Inc., a privately held real estate investment company, and owner and operator of Cornerstone. “We are thrilled to see our dream of Greg’s talent come to fruition and be recognized as the number one private golf course by Golf Magazine. We are truly honored to be at the top of this revered category of golf course in the United States.”
As if the #1 ranking wasn’t enough, Tannehill said that Cornerstone will be hosting the Colorado Senior Amateur Championship the first week in September.
“For us, it is a great way to get senior competitive players to play our course and to this part of Colorado,” said Tannehill. “All of these championships have always been held out on the Front Range [of Colorado] and it is a great opporunity for us.”
Members of Cornerstone have access to a 20-plus acre practice facility and some of the finest golf professionals and staff in the nation. Mark Wood has consistently been ranked one of the top 50 instructors in the country for the past 10 years, and Kathy Hart-Wood, former LPGA touring pro and also a celebrated top 50 instructor as named by Golf for Women, is director of women’s golf. Cornerstone also recently celebrated the opening of its clubhouse, which includes a casual bar and grill, outdoor dining and the Village Mercantile, featuring a golf pro shop and outfitters’ headquarters.