THE EARLY YEARS .
The course and hotel catered to wealthy residents of the midwest, especially Chicago. The guest list included Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Burns & Allen, Grover Cleveland and FDR. It is even rumored that Al Capone frequented the resort to work on his tan and his golf game. He probably appreciated the fact it was a "hidden gem."
THE PROS DISCOVER PINECREST.
Pinecrest and nearby Harder Hall hosted the Haig & Haig Mixed Scotch Tournament from 1959 to 1963. Virtually all the major professionals, both male and female, played Pinecrest. The list included Arnold Palmer, Tommy Bolt, Julius Boros, Kathy Whitworth, Mickey Wright, Joanne Carner and many others
THE LATER YEARS.With the proliferation of modern hotels in Florida, the Pinecrest Hotel was unable to survive. It had a succession of owners and occupants, including a private school and a transcendental meditation center. Finally time and termites got the best of the grand old hotel and it was razed in 2007.
Fortunately the course itself survived. In the early 70s it was taken over by the city of Avon Park, and was later bought by the members. As a semi-private club, it is open to guest play all year round.