Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa and Marina-
Eastern Shore Exodus
The River Marsh Golf Club at the Hyatt Chesapeake Bay Resort in Cambridge Maryland had always been admired from afar by this writer. I would glance to my left while driving over the Choptank River-Route 50 Bridge and see the attractive complex while taking the family on our annual pilgrimage to Ocean City. This summer, I finally received the chance to take in the golf course and all the wonders that complete this beautiful distraction from the daily grind on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.
As resorts golf courses go, River Marsh Golf Club holds a candle to any in the Mid-Atlantic. An immediate observation I was able to obtain on my first route over the track was that in general, every hole was fairly straight. Any slight dogleg is one that is directed by huge fairway bunkering displays that award-winning architect Keith Foster incorporates into his design. Players can choose from five sets of tees on the par 71 layout starting at 4748 from the forwards to 6800 yards from the tips. The first two holes on the front side and have inviting greens that enable you to get your round off to a good start. Behind the second green, you get a decent view of the Choptank as well as the marina at the Hyatt Regency. The par 5 third has water and marsh down the entire right side as well as crossing the fairway. The fourth hole is a long par 4 that features a two-tiered green. All the trouble on the par 5
fifth is down the left side. The next three holes at River Marsh all showcase deep greens and even though they are situated on the side of the property adjacent to a busy highway (Rt. 50) mounds and foliage are in place to buffer any diversion. Holes nine and ten are both challenging par 4’s that play parallel to one another, just in the opposite direction and into the prevailing wind. Eleven, a par 4 measuring 330 yards is best played up the left side to get the best angle to the putting surface. A series of large traps protect both the fairway and green on the par 4 twelfth. Thirteen is a lengthy par 4 where par is a keeper. Fourteen is a hole that plays radically different depending on your tee box. It’s under 300 from the whites but 412 yards from the blues. The back nine at River Marsh has the rare Par 3, 5, 3, 5 ending. The par 3 fifteenth can be seen from the entrance road on your way to the resort. Beware of back right pin placements on this green surrounded by hazards. Sixteen is the easiest par 5 on the course and big hitters have a realistic shot in getting home in two.
I was just twenty paces from accomplishing that myself. River Marsh closes with two exciting, signature holes that represent what may be the best one-two punch finisher in the entire Free State. The par 3 seventeenth will contest all comers with a dramatic tee shot over Shoal Creek. Trust your game, find dry land and make par. The par 5 eighteenth is a postcard worthy beauty that plays along the banks of the Choptank River. Oak trees left in place add luster and strategy to one great golf hole. From your first tee shot to your final putt, River Marsh epitomizes what terrific resort golf is all about golf.
Golf packages with all the goodies including club storage and cleaning, unlimited golf and a commemorative bag tag are available.
In my years of travel, most golf resorts are golf destinations with some family activities. I would describe the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay as a family resort with a golf course. I was pleasantly surprised that this was a breakaway that the whole gang could enjoy. Our 7-year old granddaughter was with us and there is no doubt that she had as much fun as her caretakers. Kids will love Camp Hyatt which offers fun youth programs to keep them occupied while you’re on the links. A wide array of swimming options is prevalent at the 342-acre recluse and my crew enjoyed each one. The all-season Winter Garden pool, the activities pool featuring a waterslide and the infinity pool provide different options for the swimmers. Other outdoor pastimes include tennis courts, beach volleyball, a 9-hole miniature golf course and frisbee golf. The Captain’s Parlor Game Room has the latest arcade escapes.
Six restaurants and lounges are positioned throughout the complex with a couple of dining stand-outs. The Blue Point Provision offers seafood specialties and spectacular water views while the Water’s Edge Grill offers outstanding regional specialties. Hey, we even raved over the food offerings at Docks Grill located in the indoor pool area. A tradition at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Resort is s’mores at the outdoor deck’s fireplace each evening. It’s a perfect ending to an active day.
As you’d might come to expect at a water-front resort, the 150-slip full service River Marsh Marina is one of the focal points here. Dock your boat and enjoy all the privileges that hotel guests enjoy. Blackwater Adventures has a wide choice of on or off the water excitement including jet skis, kayaks and bikes. If you are seeking a quieter comfort zone, the Sago Spa, named after the underwater grass found in the bay that provides life and nourishment to its inhabitants. The spa is inspired by its surroundings with the nautical theme throughout. An array of treatments, steam room, sauna and complete salon are just what the doctor ordered for total relaxation.
There are 400 guest rooms at the Hyatt Regency, making it an ideal for destination weddings and business pow wows. Everything you need, and more are the perfect ingredients for you to host an event to remember. There’s plenty of room with over 37,000 sq. ft of flexible space, including a 11,250-square-foot ballroom and outdoor terraces.
What a pleasant surprise the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf, Resort, Spa and Marina was! I was anticipating a golf resort, but instead I found so much more. The River Marsh Golf Club is special. A real piece on Eastern Shore golf eye candy. This is the ideal setting to work or play by the bay! It’s so convenient to the Baltimore-Washington metro as well as other points to the north like Philadelphia and New York. Do yourself a favor like the Ciattei Clan did and pull up stakes and set sail for this exodus on the eastern shore of Maryland.