Medinah Country Club

Medinah clubhouse
The Masonic-inspired clubhouse at Medinah Country Club. Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images

About Medinah Country Club:

Located in a Chicago suburb, west of O'Hare Airport, Medinah Country Club is one of the most prominent clubs in America. The club has three golf courses, simply named No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3, and has hosted many major events on its No. 3 course.

  • Photo tour of Medinah's No. 3 course

Address: 6N001 Medinah Road, Medinah, Ill., 60157
Phone: (630) 773-1700

When the Courses Opened:

The opening dates and designer for each of Medinah Country Club's courses:

• No. 1: Opened in 1925; original architect, Tom Bendelow
• No. 2: Opened in 1926; original architect, Tom Bendelow
• No. 3: Opened in 1928; original architect, Tom Bendelow (numerous other architects have worked on redesigns of No. 3 over the years)

Yardages and Ratings:

The golf course yardages, plus USGA slope and course ratings, are listed below for the back tees:

• No. 1: 6,713 yards; 135 slope; 72.9 course rating
• No. 2: 6,210 yards; 122 slope; 69.7 course rating
• No. 3: 7,657 yards; 152 slope; 78.3 rating

Major Tournaments Hosted:

These tournaments were all played on the No. 3 course (tournament winners also listed):

2012 Ryder Cup: Europe
2006 PGA Championship: Tiger Woods
1999 PGA Championship: Tiger Woods
1990 U.S. Open: Hale Irwin
1988 U.S. Senior Open: Gary Player
1975 U.S. Open: Lou Graham
1949 U.S. Open: Cary Middlecoff

PGA Tour events: The Western Open was played at Medinah No. 3 three times; Chicago Victory and Chicago Open are other tour events here. Byron Nelson, Billy Casper and Gene Sarazen are among the Tour event winners.

Profile and History of Medinah Country Club:

Medinah Country Club was founded by Shriners whose Chicago meeting place was called the Medinah Temple. When they decided to establish their own private club in what was, in the 1920s, countryside but is now the suburbs of Chicago, they decided the Medinah name was one they'd stick with.

The club's distinctive clubhouse and three golf courses sit on more than 600 acres. Medinah was originally open only to Shriners, and the club's Web site says the clubhouse architect, Richard G. Schmid, "had a flair for blending the classic lines of Byzantine, Oriental, Louis XIV, and Italian architecture characteristic of many Masonic structures."

The clubhouse and golf courses all opened in the 1920s, and the Shriners-only limitation was soon removed.

Scottish architect Tom Bendelow was hired to design all three courses. Bendelow is believed to have designed at least 480 courses in his career, and among his other notable courses are Olympia Fields, also in Chicago; East Lake in Atlanta; and Dubsdread in Florida.

The club's courses are known simply as No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3, named for the order in which they opened. While No. 3 is today by far the most famous - hosting U.S. Opens and PGA Championships, among other big tournaments - it was originally intended as the "ladies course" at Medinah.

In the early 1930s, Bendelow's original design was reworked and the No. 3 course began its journey to prominence. Architect Roger Packard did a major renovation in the 1980s, and Rees Jones did more work in 2002; Roger Rulewich also did some work in-between. Some new, deeper tee boxes were added prior to the '06 PGA Championship.

No. 3 today is known for its length - when it hosted the PGA Championship in 2006 it was the longest-ever major championship venue (since surpassed) - and rough made more difficult by a plethora of trees. Lake Kadijah comes into play on several holes, with four holes that require crossing a finger of the lake.

Two back-nine par-3s can change a good round into a bad one in a hurry. The 13th, playing across the water, can play as long as 244 yards. The 17th, also across Lake Kadijah, isn't as long as 13 but plays to a challenging green that sits hard against the water. The 17th has played a large role in the outcome of some of the course's big events in the past.

No. 3 now boasts a very high USGA course rating of 78.3 and a daunting slope of 153.

Course Photos: Front Nine | Back Nine

(Sources: Medinah Country Club; PGA of America; Golf Digest)