Concert Golf Partners is one of the fastest-growing private club ownership companies in the US. Their specialty is taking private clubs that are underperforming and under-utilized, giving them an infusion of much-needed capital, and turning them around so that members can thoroughly enjoy their private club membership. Concert currently has over 30 properties in its portfolio, spanning 16 states from Massachusetts to Texas.
While this is true for the majority of properties, it is not the case with the Club at Renaissance in Fort Myers, Florida. In fact, The Club at Renaissance is one of the most impressive private clubs in their portfolio. Since its inception, The Club at Renaissance has been a thriving and debt-free community for most of its existence and the community is nearly sold out. Over the past several years the club has experienced growth while at the same time maintaining its exclusivity. Worthington Group Partnership built and developed the community in 2003. In 2020, Worthington unveiled “a club-wide overhaul, playfully dubbed “Renaissance 2.0. It included a new pool bar and outdoor dining patio, a golf performance academy, a fire pit, bocce ball courts, pickleball courts, and more. Renovations to the golf course were completed in the fall of 2020 and Concert purchased the property in September 2022.
It’s no wonder that Florida is the fastest-growing state in the country. With warm temperatures that promote outside activities year-round, people are flocking in droves to the Sunshine State. On a recent return trip to the area – I lived in Fort Myers for five years – I could not believe how much more traffic there was and how busy the major hubs had become. Renaissance – located just off Daniels Road, one of the main arteries in Fort Myers – breaks that mold. It’s one of the lowest-density communities in Southwest Florida with only 386 homesites on 500 acres. Renaissance offers an intimate experience for both club members and residents.
The centerpiece of the community is the Arthur Hills-designed championship golf course which is regarded as one of the best courses in southwest Florida. The Club at Renaissance earned Golfweek Magazine’s America’s Top 40 New Golf Courses 2005.
Members can choose from five sets of tees with yardages ranging from 7,248 yards for low-handicappers to 4,660 yards for juniors, seniors, and ladies. The scorecard takes things a bit further and lists an additional three yardages from hybrid/combo tees, so finding a suitable yardage is a snap. There’s water present on every hole and, unfortunately for most golfers, it’s on the right!
The Club at Renaissance has several memorable holes. Number 2 is a par 5 that plays 461 yards from the Tee #2. The hole starts with a tee shot that requires about a 200-yard carry over water depending upon the line you take. Whatever you do, be sure to avoid the fairway bunkers. Water forms the right side of the fairway the rest of the way and there’s a menacing fairway bunker in the middle of the landing area of your layup shot. The elevated green is protected in front with large bunkers. It’s a challenging golf hole and a three-shot hole for many golfers.
Number 3 is a challenging driving hole. This 351-yard par 4 features trees all down the left with a couple of bunkers in the landing area just for good measure. Water on the right comes into play about 200 yards off the tee. Since the fairway is extremely narrow at about the 300-yard mark, I found that hitting something other than drive off the tee left a short to mid-iron approach into this long, narrow green that is protected on the left by two bunkers and the water on the right.
Straight-way, short par 5s are usually a great place to post a low score, right? If you believe that, then the 9th hole may prove you wrong! Number 9 is a challenging par 5 that plays 454 yards from Tee #2, and with a good drive, it will present another risk/reward opportunity. Now for the obstacles. Trees line the left side and there’s water on the right from tee to green. If you can drive over the two fairway bunkers in front of you, you’ll be left with a second shot of about 220 yards. Should you choose to layup, you’ll need to play the shot toward the water to avoid the large fairway bunker in the landing area. A single bunker guards the left front of the green and water guards the right side.
All four of the par 3 holes are challenging with water, mounding, and a lot of bunkering coming into play. This is evident on the 12th hole, which plays 140 yards. The green is well-protected with four pot bunkers on the left as well as a large mound, and water to the right. With all of the hazards that surround this long and narrow green, there isn’t much room for error. It’s yet another picturesque hole at the Club!
Number 15 is a very challenging par 4 and The Club’s #1 handicap. From Tee #2, the hole plays 398 yards with water down the right side. If a fade is in your shot repertoire, aim your tee shot directly at the fairway bunker on the left. Find the fairway bunker and par just became a lot more difficult. A good drive will leave a mid to short-iron into the green, which is protected by a lone bunker in front.
In the event you favor the courts over the course, Renaissance’s six championship red clay courts will make you feel like you’re playing at the French Open. Their tennis program offers a variety of competitive and social activities, including Round Robin socials, men’s and ladies’ clinics, individual and group lessons, themed tennis activities, and the annual Member-Guest Tennis Invitational. There’s a ball machine available if you want to tune up your game, and the Tennis deck is the perfect place to enjoy a cocktail with friends after your match.
Although pickleball has been around since the 1960s, it only recently gained popularity. To keep up with the demand, The Club at Renaissance added two new state-of-the-art pickleball courts. You’ll find organized clinics and socials; private and semi-private lessons are also available. These new courts are lit for evening play!
The Florida sun can be relentless at times and the sparkling, resort-style pool is reason enough to head to the Club on a hot summer day. The pool is open seasonally and the Rendezvous Pool Pavilion offers poolside service so you can enjoy lunch and a cold beverage while soaking in the rays!
Whether you’re a golfer, racquet sports player, or just enjoy a good meal, The Club at Renaissance is the place to be. Renaissance is such a robust and active Club that there is always something going on. Weekly dining events include Tuesday and Thursday Pub Nights with Happy Hour, Tenderloin and Pasta Night, Saturday Grill Out at the Pool, and the best Sunday Brunch in Fort Myers. À la carte dining is available two days a week with great weekly specials and a menu that changes to reflect the season.
Are you interested in becoming a member? Several membership plans are available; from an Executive Golf Membership for those 44 and younger to a Heritage Golf Membership for those who are 75 and up. Social and non-resident golf memberships are also available on a limited basis. If you’re interested in becoming a member and experiencing this serene beauty of a low-density club for yourself, give them a call at (239) 561-6355 or visit them online at www.theclubatrenaissance.com.