Following a complete restoration of their historic golf course by golf architects Forrest Richardson and Mark Fine, Mira Vista Golf & Country Club has announced the addition of 54 new members since the grand re-opening this past November.The membership of the club undertook the bold initiative to restore the golf course to its original splendor while also working on a long term arbor plan to preserve the health of the great stands of trees that define the course’s setting in the hills above Berkeley, California.
Mira Vista Golf & Country Club, founded and designed in 1920 by Robert Hunter, began is trek to restoration in 2007 under the direction of Richardson and Fine. The full program called for the rebuilding of greens, bunkering and tees.
Hunter is best known for his work with Alister MacKenzie, designer of such notable courses as Cypress Point Club, Augusta National, Royal Sydney Golf Club and The Valley Club of Montecito. While Hunter, one of Mira Vista’s founders, enlisted the help of Willie K. Watson, research shows that it was Hunter who pioneered the site and oversaw each detail of the original layout.
“We landed upon some great articles from the San Francisco Chronicle,” said Richardson. “Not only do they show that Hunter designed the course, but he took ownership of the way it was being received by golfers from throughout California and even back East.”
The Links, one of the most celebrated books in golf, was Hunter’s literary gift to the sport. It followed just a few years after he completed work at Mira Vista, which remains as Hunter’s only solo course design. Mira Vista enjoys a prestige among Bay Area courses that will never be equaled – it remains as the only course in the world that can be attributed to Robert Hunter and his great legacy in golf.
Extensive photo archive research and drawing study of the original plans for Mira Vista had been ongoing for the past several years in preparation for the 2011 work. In addition to restoration of greens and bunkers, panoramic views from Mira Vista’s four prominent ridge tops have been opened through the selective thinning of overgrown tree groves that came along during development of the surrounding neighborhoods. Today, grand views of Downtown San Francisco and the North Bay greet the golfer at more than two dozen points across the 18 hole layout.
Hallmarks of the work included reclaiming 17 lost fairway bunkers, restoration of the famous risk-reward 7th Hole, and rebuilding a series of bunkers the 18th Hole that had been removed during WWII. Upon its reopening in November 2011 the course now plays to 6,700 yards and a par of 72.
Mira Vista Golf & Country Club is located in the North Berkeley Hills, just 20 minutes from downtown San Francisco and 15 minutes from Marin County. The fully appointed 30,000 square foot clubhouse and newly constructed Vista Deck boasts one of the best panoramic views in the entire Bay Area, with 180 degree views of downtown San Francisco, both the Golden Gate and Bay Bridges, and Mount Tamalpais.