TPC Sawgrass: How one woman found her dream home on one of the world’s most famous golf courses

by Joanne Miller

Living on a Golf Course: A Slice of Paradise or a Nightmare?

Living on a golf course is a dream that many avid golfers might have. The idea of having a world-renowned golf course in your backyard seems idyllic, but is it really as perfect as it sounds? CNN recently profiled a family who chose to make their home on the grounds of the Tournament Players Club (TPC) Sawgrass, home of the PGA Tour and host to The Players Championship.

Rebecca Burchell and her family had spent 10 years living in Beaconsfield, a market town in southeast England, before making the decision to move back to the US. Burchell’s husband, Mark, had found a new job opportunity in Jacksonville, Florida, which led the family to return. While the decision was difficult, the family decided to settle in Ponte Vedra Beach, near Jacksonville, due to its proximity to top schools.

Burchell, a licensed realtor with a background in renovating and flipping properties, quickly fell in love with the Sawgrass Players Club neighborhood. The community is spread across 1,200 acres and features 16 neighborhoods, with a total of 1,900 properties. The neighborhood offers a range of property prices, with homes on Seven Mile Drive ranging from $1.4 to $2.5 million. The proximity to the coastline puts a premium on prices, with even the cheapest properties starting at $700,000.

Living on a golf course does come with its challenges. Burchell notes that around 10 golf balls a week land in their backyard, but it’s a minor inconvenience that is expected when living on a golf course. The occasional golfer wandering into their garden without permission is a more significant issue, mainly due to the family’s rescue dog, who is wary of strangers. However, Burchell notes that she has never heard anyone complain about the occasional ball hitting their property.

Despite these challenges, Burchell and her family enjoy the lifestyle that comes with living in a golf course community. The TPC Sawgrass community offers a range of amenities, including a swimming pool, children’s play park, and an expansive recreation complex. The 77,000-square-foot TPC Sawgrass clubhouse serves as the focal point of the community, featuring restaurants, a gallery, and a golf shop.

Interestingly, golf itself ranks relatively low on the priority list for the Burchell family. While Burchell’s husband does play golf, the costs required to play at the championship courses are high. As a result, he primarily plays at The Yards, a more affordable alternative that includes tennis courts and a pickleball facility.

The only potential downside to living on a golf course for the Burchells is the annual Players Championship, often referred to as the “fifth major.” The tournament brings with it traffic, noise, and commotion for a week in March. However, the locals have developed a survival strategy, stocking up on supplies beforehand and hunkering down for the duration of the tournament. The week is filled with festivities, private seating at the course, and a lively atmosphere that Burchell describes as a huge party.

In conclusion, living on a golf course can be a slice of paradise for those who value the lifestyle and amenities that come with it. Despite the occasional golf ball in the backyard and the temporary inconveniences during major golf events, many residents find the experience to be a dream come true. The Burchell family has found their own version of paradise in the midst of the Tournament Players Club Sawgrass, enjoying the beauty of the surroundings and the tight-knit community that comes with living on a golf course.

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