Daufuskie Island, SC (July 9, 2013) – Ernie Els is headed Scotland’s Muirfield Country Club this month as the defending British Open champion. He is coming off a recent win at the BMW International and a fourth place finish at the U.S. Open, the most recent major championship in golf.

He also won the British Open the last time it was played at Muirfield, in 2002.

Yet, the four-time major champion isn’t among the betting favorites to reclaim the Claret Jug.

But, when it comes to favorites of his own, Els had nice things to say about the Rees Jones Signature Golf Course at Haig Point, where he visited recently as part of a sponsor Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) outing.

“It is really nice. It has a natural look to it with a lot of doglegs. It is just an enjoyable course,” said Els, who carded a 7-under-par-65 from the layout of 7,100 yards for the day. “You have to drive it well and there are some good par 5s, like the 14th. That’s a beautiful hole! I really enjoyed it here.

“Rees Jones did a hell-of-a job here. He kept the natural beauty of the island. It’s a natural-looking Lowcountry golf course.”

Unlike many seaside courses, Jones’ routing went perpendicular to the Calibogue Sound in order to maximize the breathtaking views. The experts took note as well. The course debuted at No. 28 in the country by Golf Digest when it opened in 1986.

“We found a spectacular green site for the 14th hole; it was naturally set on high land with the marsh on both sides,” said Jones, a renown architect who is given the moniker “Open Doctor” for toughening courses prior to U.S. Open play. “When Golf Digest did its 99 best holes in the world, they included the 14th at Haig Point.

“It is just a great hole and it’s one of my all-time favorites. You start in the woods and all of a sudden you are out on the water and marshland, shooting to a peninsula green that is only 87 feet wide.

“I kiddingly say the only time that third shot is an easy shot is the first time you play it, because you really don’t know that there are wetlands on both sides.”

Located on Daufuskie Island, Haig Point is accessible only by boat from Hilton Head Island, S.C. Haig Point residents drive electric carts throughout the community. In addition to the Rees Jones Signature Golf Course, the private community also offers equestrian facilities set among undisturbed natural settings and the beachfront of Calibogue Sound.

About Haig Point
Haig Point is a charming sea island community just off the coast of South Carolina, between Hilton Head and Savannah, Ga. There is no bridge, so the island is accessible only by a private ferry system originating from Hilton Head Island.

Residents and guests drive electric carts to the eclectic points of interest in and around the community, including the historic Haig Point Lighthouse (built in 1873), Strachan Mansion and the tabby ruins of 19th century slave quarters. The community is also home to a stunning Rees Jones Signature golf course. Amenities at Haig Point Club also include a full-service tennis center, equestrian center, two restaurants and a community park. For more information about the island or real estate opportunities, call (800) 686-3441.

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