Ranked #1 by Golf Digest for Best Value, Coronado is more than just an affordable round… It’s the muni golf course you can never seem to get a tee time at. Located just across the San Diego Coronado Bay Bridge, the Crown Jewel of the Crown City is a favorite destination for local residents and celebrities alike. The fun, yet challenging, par-72 course is located right on the water, and features incredible views of the harbor and Downtown San Diego. Our new collaboration includes a special limited-edition collection of several styles inspired by Coronado Island and the history of the course itself. Shop the collection here.
We recently caught up with Brian Smock, the local legend and Head Pro at Coronado Golf Club, to talk about the new collaboration and what makes the island club so special.
1. How did you get introduced to the game ?
My uncle Ernie Gonzalez played on the PGA tour in the mid 80s to the early 90s. Watching him as a 12 year old inspired me to start.
2. What role has golf played in my personal life and career ?
Well they are one in the same I feel. I played professionally mostly on the Korn Ferry Tour for almost two decades. I made a living playing and was able to travel and make friends all over the world. Now as a Head Pro and a business owner I focus on how to make sure our golfer’s experience is exceptional and I take pride in providing jobs and benefits for my staff at Coronado Golf Course.
3. Tell us about your competitive playing days
I reached a career high of 251 in the world and played on the Korn Ferry Tour for a number of years. I had 4 second place finishes out there and a lot of close calls. I think I made it to the Q school finals 8 times after entering at least 18 times. I tried counting once and it got too depressing (lol). Now as a Club Pro, I’ve been able to relax and enjoy competing. I’ve played in several PGA Tour events, including the 2017 and 2018 PGA Championships. I still try to keep my game sharp as I think it’s important to represent Coronado Golf Course to the fullest.
4. These days it seems golf instruction is keeping you busy, or at least that’s what it appears on social media. Talk about the developing role of social media as a golf pro but also as a retailer ?
Yes, it was fun to do a handful of videos during the San Diego golf course shutdown in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. I think golf and social media go hand in hand . As an instructor or a single pro shop, you only have so many people that you come in contact with. Being able to create content and brand yourself is important. It’s an easy way to show off your shop or the students you have been working with. Engaging with your audience and getting feedback is very valuable. Remember, have fun with it!
3. How special is it to run Coronado golf course as you basically grew up there?
It’s very special, I often pinch myself. I relish the fact I get to keep making Coronado Golf Course a special place and add to the history.
The new Imperial x Coronado Collection reflects that rich history with retro patches featuring the course’s crossed clubs and crown logo. Also, many of the styles in the collection are from Imperial’s DNA Project, which is a collection of styles that honor Imperial’s own storied history. These tried and true designs can be traced in Imperial Headwear catalogs from 1950 onward, which makes them a perfect match for this collaboration.
There are 10 total styles in the collection… A little something for everyone. Besides the retro fits, there are also styles with performance fabrics, mesh backs, and fashion prints. The Coronado Aloha Rope Cap is a 1980’s/1990’s inspired style printed in Hawaiian florals, with a leather back strap and metal buckle. Another standout style in the collection is the neon orange, performance fabric Coronado One Hit Wonder. There are also two “mile high fit” styles featuring a structured high crown profile that is brand new to the Imperial line. There’s even a Coronado Tour Visor™ , a classic Imperial Tour Visor™ featuring a retro “Coronado California” shield patch.
Visit www.golfcoronado.com for more information about the course, tee times, tournaments, instruction and more.