On this episode of On The Green Podcast, I am joined by special guest Taylor Fuller, Marketing Director for Troon Golf at the World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Florida. World Golf Village spans over 5,000 acres with over 6,000 homes and homesites and 15,000+ residents and features two championship golf courses designed by some of the most legendary names in golf. Taylor and I discussed the many wonderful amenities available at the World Golf Village as well as the unique characteristics of its two fantastic golf courses, Slammer & Squire and King & Bear.
Meet Taylor Fuller
While earning his journalism degree in his home state of Vermont, Taylor began working for a nearby golf course, the Equinox Golf Resort and Spa. It was during his time at Equinox that he realized he wanted to pursue a career in golf while still using his degree. After graduation, he was able to do just that as he moved to St. Augustine to accept a position with Troon Golf, the largest golf management company in the world. Troon currently manages around 640 courses worldwide, including the Slammer & Squire and King & Bear at World Golf Village.
When it comes to the day-to-day responsibilities at World Golf Village, Taylor says no two days are the same. Some days, he is busy crafting and distributing press releases, managing website updates, and handling the course’s email marketing to both members and the public. However, his favorite days are the days he gets to put his journalism skills to work to tell stories through photography and film. One of his favorite projects to date is a video he produced about the Blind Golf Association, which hosted an event at World Golf Village in October of last year. Speaking of his experience observing, filming, and interviewing members of the association, Taylor says, “Obviously, I have heard of the association, but I’ve never really watched them play. It’s absolutely incredible what these golfers are doing that are 100% blind.”
Slammer & Squire
The World Golf Village features two championship golf courses. The first one we discussed was Slammer & Squire, which opened in 1998 and is considered the centerpiece of World Golf Village. Golf course designer and architect Bobby Weed designed this course with the help of two Golf Hall of Famers, Sam Snead (“The Slammer”) and Gene Sarazen (“The Squire”). This resort-style course is playable for everyone and emphasizes the short games, which Snead and Sarazen were known for.
As Taylor describes, this course is “a tale of two nines,” with the front nine being narrow and the back nine being more open with water. Overall, the Slammer & Squire is enjoyable for all skill levels and a great course for those looking to have some fun out on the greens.
King & Bear
The sister course to Slammer & Squire is the King & Bear Golf Course. This course opened in 2000 and is the only course in the world designed by the legendary Arnold Palmer (“The King”) and Jack Nicklaus (“The Bear”). Nicklaus put his imprint on the course with the open fairways while Palmer designed the bunkers bleeding into the water and the fast greens. The course is described as a true collaboration between the two golfers. While designing the course, the golfers’ differences did at times come into play, as Taylor recalled, “While they were out there walking the course, Jack would write something down, and Arnie would look at it and erase it.”
According to Taylor, the King & Bear is a bit more difficult than the Slammer & Squire, but still very playable for all skill levels. Its unique and tucked-away setting features beautiful rock formations along the water and on the greens, and is “personally one of my favorite courses on the First Coast!”
World Golf Village
While the two courses are only five miles apart, each course offers golfers a totally unique experience. Both courses are semi-private, so the public is welcome to book a tee time to play, though the 500 club members are given tee time priority during the week. To book your tee time at the Slammer & Squire or King & Bear at the World Golf Village, visit www.golfwgv.com.
You can also head to worldgolfvillage.com to learn more about these unique golf courses along with the World Golf Village’s vacation packages and membership opportunities. To hear more of my conversation with Taylor, tune into Episode 35 of On The Green Podcast on Stitcher, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you like to listen, and stay tuned for my other monthly episodes!