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Sawgrass Country Club completes phase two of renovation

Topsider Lounge lores

Sawgrass Country Club recently finished renovating its Beach Club — the second part of a three-part renovation that also includes updates to the fitness club and eventually a new golf clubhouse.

The renovated club is brighter and more open, with a focus on its ocean view.

“It was originally designed as a Tommy Bahama-like, heavy Mediterranean look, which was popular at the time. We now have a coastal look that’s lighter and brighter,” said Janet Collins, director of member services.

The exterior front of the building is unchanged, but once inside visitors will notice changes that include a remodeled staircase leading up towards a bank of windows.

“A lot of our members were convinced we changed windows. We just lightened them up and made them look brighter,” said Collins.

At the top of the staircase and to the left is a new lounge with a theater-like view of the Atlantic Ocean. Seating in the bar area is raised as it gets farther from the ocean, which gives every diner a view of the ocean.

Large-scale interior renovations required the walls be taken down to the studs and the drywall removed and replaced. Ceilings were updated with new acoustics, fixtures and lighting. All new furniture and color schemes were added.

Outside renovations include a new family pool, which replaces a previous pool in the front opposite the beach. New seating and a fireplace grace the outside pavilion. Outside seating now includes beach-facing benches, which give an unobstructed view of the ocean.

Originally created in 1975 by developer John Stockton Jr., the Beach Club was originally a small hut, and the country club focus was primarily on the golf course and real estate. The first renovation was in 1980 when the building was expanded to hold more dining and lounge seating. More upgrades were added in 2004 after Sawgrass Country Club members were given control to create their own vision for the club.

The newest look is designed, in part, to attract younger families. For many years Sawgrass was viewed as a retiree club, but Collins said that is no longer true.

“There is a phenomenon happening through Ponte Vedra. Families want to live near the beach and St. Johns County has the best schools. We are much more family orientated than five years ago. We have child care and year long children’s programs. On top of that, the average age of our members is under 50,” said Collins.

Photo courtesy Janet Collins

The Topsider Lounge at Sawgrass Country Club

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