Carnegie Abbey Club a Private Affair

The exclusive Carnegie Abbey Club at Narragansett Bay in Portsmouth, Rhode Island opened for play last July. The club occupies 350 waterfront acres, property where the Narragansett Indians once dwelled. Higher parts of the course offer lovely views of Narragansett Bay, Bristol, Connecticut and the Newport Bridge.

Abbey Club owner Peter de Savary hired European architect Donald Steel to design a Scottish-links style layout that plays 6,611 yards from the tips. The layout features deep-pitted, revetted bunkers typical of many older European tracks. The 14th may be the venue’s signature hole. A Scottish-style burn (small holding pond) guards the fairway, which is also crossed by a stone wall.

Carnegie Abbey’s 62,000-square-foot clubhouse, a Newport-style "summer-cottage" structure, contains a full restaurant, pro shop, spa and health facilities with massage area, swimming pool, shower facilities and a bar that extends around the corner of the clubhouse, offering views of the 18th fairway and Narragansett Bay. Upstairs are 20 two-bedroom suites for vacationing members.

Other club amenities include a Golf Lodge, a stable with horses, trails for horseback outings, a dock to service its yachting members, and tennis facilities. A program coordinator oversees the equestrian activities and a professional instructor runs the tennis program.

A British oil magnate and fabled yachtsman, de Savary, with Carnegie Abbey, has added to his list of destinations for the rich and famous. Members of the Rhode Island club also have access to de Savary courses at Carnegie Club at Skibo Castle in Scotland, Cherokee Plantation in South Carolina, and a new facility near Florence, Italy in the early stages of construction. For Carnegie Abbey membership information, call 401/682-1121.