Review & Rating of The Oaks Golf Club at Margaritaville Lake Resort
World-renowned Bruce Devlin and Robert Von Hagge carved a beautiful championship golf course on property that used to be a ski slope with man-made snow in the Ozark hills. The Oaks Golf Club at Margaritaville Lake Resort plays through rolling tree-lined fairways with dramatic elevation changes, beautiful views of Lake of the Ozarks, and challenging greens. The par 71 course is short by today’s standards (6432) but it plays longer than the stated yardages and it’s a shot makers course that puts a premium on accuracy rather than distance. On several holes, you should consider leaving the driver in the bag and focus on strategic course management and keeping the ball in the fairway if you want to turn in a good score. Tight sloping fairways, dramatic elevation changes, several water hazards, and 53 bunkers most of which guard the greens make for a challenging round. However, there are five tee boxes with yardages ranging from 3481 to 6432 yards – pick the right tee box and don’t bite off more than you can chew and you’ll have a fun and enjoyable round. The course is scenic, offers some unique and interesting holes, and is challenging but fair for all levels of play.
Some of the holes that we really liked at The Oaks Golf Club included:
- #4 is a fun and challenging 365-yard par 4 with an elevated tee box, a dogleg left, and a big pond in front of the green that will most likely force you to lay up or try a very risky shot over the trees to the green
- #7 is a unique and fun roller coaster ride – a downhill shot to a fairway that takes a sharp dogleg left and heads uphill to a green guarded by a left and right front bunker
- #8 is a beautiful 163-yard par 4 with a big downhill shot over a pond to a green 3 bunkers in the front and one lone bunker across the back
- #13 has an elevated tee box, a very tight fairway, and Lake of the Ozarks as a backdrop
- #18 is an excellent finishing hole – a 423-yard par 4 with a carry over a lake off the elevated back tee box, a dogleg left, 3 fairway bunkers, and a small green guarded by 3 bunkers
The Bermuda and zoysia fairways vary from very tight to ample and most have some significant elevation changes that will require you to club up or club down. You’ll also need to plan for and manage the sloping fairways which can be significant. If you spray the ball, you’ll most likely be lost in trees or in the back yard of some beautiful homes that line three holes. When we played the fairways were cut thick which means we didn’t get a lot of extra roll. The rough was also a little thick but playable. The Oaks fairways were in very good condition and the course is well maintained and manicured.
The bent grass greens at The Oaks Golf Club were also in near perfect condition, ran true and smooth, and at a good speed. Most are push up which hinders an effective bump and run and can create some roll off the edge of the green. They have some slope but not a lot of undulation. Most are well guarded with one to four bunkers.
The sand in the 53 bunkers at The Oaks Golf Club is good and playable, but a little gritty and heavy. The majority of the bunkers guard the greens and we didn’t have any trouble avoiding the fairway bunkers. The lips are manageable – around 3 to 6 inches tall, but don’t expect to hit in and roll out.
Margaritaville Lake Resort is also home to a fun par 35 nine-hole course that's a blast to play. Here is a link to our review of The 9 Hole Course.
Bottom line – The Oaks Golf Club is a must-play if you’re in the area – it’s scenic, fair but challenging, and home to some unique and interesting holes.
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Service is excellent and very friendly. The pro shop is well stocked and won Merchandiser of the Year. Practice facilities are adequate. The grill has limited food and drink - cold sandwiches, some burgers, and dogs.