The sixteen Windsor area businessmen who gathered in the spring of 1921 to form a new golf club along the shores of Lake St. Clair would smile proudly at what has become Beach Grove Golf & Country Club in the 100 years since. Indeed, from the great golf offered across its Stanley Thompson–designed course, exquisite dining, spectacular scenery, and a decades-long focus on creating memorable experiences for its members and their families, Beach Grove endures as a landmark of Southwest Ontario golf and leisure.
At its core, Beach Grove has always promoted the principles of family membership, great golf, and good social times. This year Beach Grove celebrates a century of delivering on that promise, and while the ever-changing restrictions due to COVID-19 and the impacts on service and operations present unique challenges, the club will continue to adjust and deliver opportunities for its members to be engaged and celebrate the Centennial.
“Beach Grove has been part of our community for 100 years, has survived a devastating fire in 1927 that destroyed the original clubhouse, endured the economic hardships of the Great Depression and World War II, and even the Flood of 1973,” says Karl Straky, Beach Grove vice-president and Centennial Committee chair. “It has seen its share of challenges but has always persevered thanks to the dedication and commitment of our amazing members.”
As a year-round private member-owned club, Beach Grove’s primary focus is to provide its members with great value via an exceptional golf, culinary, and social experience, and 100 years after its founding the club continues to maintain its strong concept of family membership while fostering an atmosphere that welcomes members and guests in a relaxed, friendly manner.
“Many of our members are third-generation Beach Grove families,” says Straky. “Their parents, grandparents, and family history are linked directly to the club’s 100 years of heritage and those founders. Our history and deep roots in the Windsor-Essex community are truly amazing! The club is thriving, with over 2,000 members who are proud to call Beach Grove their second home.”
Beach Grove’s activities go well beyond its stunning golf course—one of the finest parkland layouts in Southern Ontario, the Beach Grove course features some of the best greens in all Southwestern Ontario golf. Playing as long as 6,700-plus yards from the championship tees, Beach Grove is a stern test for the best of golfers, but still provides an enjoyable and challenging game for higher handicaps as well. The course has been the site of numerous provincial championships over the years and, true to its family heritage, continues to boast one of the best ongoing junior golf programs in the region.
But golf is not the only reason Beach Grove is the club for you and your family. Indeed, with its wide variety of social activities and club functions throughout the year, it is easy to see why Beach Grove has one of the highest active memberships among Ontario private golf and country clubs. This is a vibrant and busy place, one that knows how to maximize membership value. Curling, a fixture at the club since 1965, continues to be a vibrant component, and during summer months the large pool with its certified kids swim programs and active marina are busy complements to Beach Grove’s outdoor offerings.
A near $5 million renovation project in 2014 resulted in new locker rooms, lounges—including an updated Stanley Thompson lounge—redesigned Marine Room, expanded St. Clair Room, enhanced dining terrace, new upper and lower decks, and a new kitchen. In 2017, another $2 million was invested to renovate the Rose and Crown dining lounges, construct a new pool house with multi-purpose rooms, as well as course improvements to bunkers, cart paths, and irrigation.
Beach Grove’s fun and vibrant club atmosphere is evidenced by the numerous social events that dot the club’s calendar—pre–COVID-19, of course—on a monthly basis. Indeed, there is always something happening at Beach Grove, both on and off the golf course: from summer concerts and mixology/wine nights, to its many leagues and games competitions, and curling bonspiels during the winter.
With so many things to do at Beach Grove, you are sure to work up an appetite, and as any experienced purveyor of fine dining in this area can attest, you are at the right place when it comes to food and dining services. Beach Grove’s award-winning culinary staff, led by Executive Chef Jillian Gauthier, prepare some of the most exquisite dishes in all of Essex County, and the club’s wine list is second to none.
“Membership at Beach Grove provides a lifestyle and level of service that drives engagement with a focus on family,” says General Manager Aidan Blunt. “The history of our club and the 100 years of community connection are another wonderful element of the operation that makes the establishment so unique. Many people are not aware that two of our founding members and our first president were the grandchildren of Hiram Walker. When you are a member here, you know you belong to something very special and are part of a tremendous history.”
If scenic settings are what you are looking for while you enjoy a formal or casual dinner, then there is no better place than Beach Grove. Backing on to Lake St. Clair, the sunset vistas in the summer are enough to take one’s breath away, and certainly another reason why Beach Grove is the family country club of choice in Windsor-Essex County. A Stanley Thompson–designed golf course, together with some of the best dining in Southwestern Ontario and a welcoming group of people to share good times and good experiences—that is resort-like life at Beach Grove Golf & Country Club. To learn more about the fantastic and affordable family membership opportunities at Beach Grove, call 519-979-8090 or visit www.beachgrove.net.