Skip to main content

Times of the Islands Magazine

Golfing at Shell Point: Eighteen Holes of Challenges and Rewards

Jan 27, 2022 02:03PM ● By LYNN SCHNEIDER 

In Southwest Florida, golf is a year-round passion—the smell of the grass, the crack of the ball, the lovely sight of a chip shot falling into the cup. Shell Point, Florida’s largest continuing-care retirement community, satisfies that passion for golf with its own 18-hole course. Nestled among 70 acres that serve as home to an abundance of Southwest Florida wildlife, Shell Point Golf Club offers a lush landscape featuring an all-grass driving range, a short-game area and glass-fast putting greens, and pristine, divot-free tee boxes and fairways. 

With challenging fairways, winding water hazards, and six tees on every hole, Shell Point’s par 71 championship course was designed by Gordon Lewis, the Naples-based architect of more than 80 golf courses in Florida. Located just minutes from Sanibel and Captiva islands and Fort Myers Beach, the course is open to the public and provides challenges and rewards for golfers at every skill level.  

Shell Point’s director of golf, Paul Fitzpatrick, who started his career at Blue Hill Country Club in Canton, Massachusetts, brings an accomplished background in all aspects of the profession, including playing, teaching, and managing. Lessons are also available from PGA teaching professional Sean Balliet, who has 17 years of expertise and plenty of local experience.  

“Accuracy is the key word here at Shell Point Golf Club,” says Fitzpatrick. “Our course rewards the players with the ability to keep the ball in play; and for the long hitter, it provides the ultimate risk/reward option.”  

Shell Point Golf Club and its Coastal Commons clubhouse host tournaments and events throughout the year, including the Shell Point Open, an annual fundraiser for the Legacy Foundation at Shell Point. This year the event benefits Shell Point’s new Larsen Health Center, which blends professional healthcare services, a state-of-the-art medical center, and modern skilled nursing and rehabilitation care with private rooms and water and preserve views. 

“Year after year, Shell Point Golf Club continues to impress me with its consistency of upkeep and its courteous, professional staff,” said Paul Weinstein, managing partner of the Weinstein Wilkes Financial Group and a long-time Shell Point Open sponsor. 

Shell Point Golf Club recently replaced all turf grass on the tees, fairways, and roughs. Before deciding on a specific turf grass, the landscape management team analyzed a variety of species and determined seashore paspalum was the hands-down best choice. The vibrant green grass is more salt-resistant than the ubiquitous Bermuda turf and combats the unavoidable salt intrusion. The hardy, self-repairing species is also tolerant of the season’s slightly cooler temperatures. The newly planted seashore paspalum is thriving. 

The Shell Point pro shop features TaylorMade, Ping, and Callaway brand clubs and has demo days to try out new equipment. The shop also carries popular clothing lines, including Vineyard Vines, FootJoy, Antigua, Bermuda Sands, Bette & Court, Tail, and many others.  

When it’s time to grab a quick bite, Breezeway Café is conveniently located adjacent to the golf course, offering breakfast sandwiches, fresh salads, and delicious flatbread and deli board options. To-go selections and menu service are available under shaded patio seating with sprawling golf course views. 

Shell Point members enjoy an array of benefits and full access to all club amenities, including the Seagrape Salon, discounted greens fees for accompanied guests, and reciprocal opportunities with local clubs. Members also enjoy designated range spots, unlimited range balls, and preferential morning tee times, along with complimentary, climate-controlled bag storage service and USGA handicap service. Member discounts are offered for salon services and retail purchases, as well as pro shop apparel and merchandise, including golf balls, clubs, and bags. Members can participate in Shell Point’s full calendar of men’s and ladies’ activities. A new series of clinics are also underway, offering golfers a tool to help improve their game—or just get out and hit some golf balls. 


Lynn Schneider is director of marketing and communications for Shell Point Retirement Community.  


Shell Point Golf Club at a Glance 

  • 18 holes  

  • Par 71 

  • 70 acres 

  • Gordon Lewis design 

  • Seashore paspalum turf 

  • Open to the public 

  • TaylorMade rental clubs available  

  • 18th Annual Shell Point Open, April 8, 2022 



17500 On Par Blvd., Fort Myers, Florida