Steeped in history, the richness and elegance of Long Island’s Gold Coast era still echo on the greens and in the clubhouse at Old Westbury Golf & Country Club. Ranked 22nd by Golf Digest in its 2013-2014 Best in New York State rankings, Old Westbury is among the metropolitan area’s most challenging courses. We have a robust tennis program, wide variety of social & sports activities and lively calendar of entertainment.
“Our facilities are opulent, but our people delightfully unpretentious.
We are a club for all the family to enjoy year round.”
Senator Kenneth B. Keating at the club’s 1964 opening
Our Gold Coast History
One Family’s Estate, One Developer’s Dream
The 530-acre tract of woods, meadows, hills and valleys, situated atop one of the highest points on Long Island, was purchased in 1887 by William C. Whitney, political leader and financier. It served as his family’s estate for three generations, was home to the famed Whitney racing stables and provided pasture for a herd of prize Angus cattle. In 1960, a Long Island developer with extraordinary vision purchased the Whitney property and sold a 190-acre section of land, along with the main house and playhouse, to a group looking to form Old Westbury’s first country club. The remaining land and buildings became part of the New York State Institute of Technology Old Westbury campus and the de Seversky Conference Center.
The Creation of a Country Club
When famous course designer William Mitchell was engaged to engineer the transformation from estate to country club, he visualized three nine-hole golf courses. Each would take full advantage of the natural changes in elevation, abundance of mature trees and splendid panoramic views of Long Island.
The 30-room, white Georgian Colonial mansion, erected by Cornelius Vanderbilt Whitney, became the member’s clubhouse with lounges and dining rooms that afforded breathtaking views of the golf course and its surroundings.
If you are wondering about the 187-foot-high iconic tower that can be seen from every corner of the country club, it was once a functioning windmill with 30 foot blades that drew water from a 587-foot well for the Whitney estate. During WWII, this eight-story structure, with its panoramic sightlines, aided in the war effort; it was commissioned to serve as an enemy aircraft lookout tower and housed eight Air Force families. Today, the tower proudly stands as the symbol of Old Westbury Golf and Country Club and watches over our fairways, tennis courts and pools.