This article has been updated.

It had been a long wait, but Massachusetts golf courses will now be allowed to open, according to updated guidance on the state's website.

Private courses may now allow individuals to access to their property as long as there are no gatherings, individuals maintain proper social distancing and specific protocols for golf courses are being followed, according to the state's website. The site also states that golf courses are not considered essential businesses.

Municipal golf courses may also open under the same guidelines.

Among the rules are requirements for face coverings for staff on property, a prohibition on caddies and golf carts, restrictions on the size of player groups to no more than four at one time and a ban on sharing or renting golf clubs, among others. Additionally, any club houses, pro shops, restaurants, bag rooms and locker rooms, along with other club facilities, located at golf courses must remain closed.

At his daily press briefing Thursday, Gov. Charlie Baker said Massachusetts has looked at what surrounding states are doing to make sure decisions about reopening weren't out of line with others.

"In this particular case, with regard to golf, we basically took a model that was being used in several of the states that were around us that we felt was consistent with what our concerns were about it in the first place and applied it," he said.

Responding to a question about golf courses being opened at a small scale, Baker said the current level is what the state believes is the safest and most appropriate at this time.

The updates come the same week that Cara Cullen, who owns two golf courses in central Massachusetts, told Fox News she would be opening up her courses despite restrictions from the state to do so. At the time, Massachusetts did not have a set date in place for golf courses to re-open. It's near the tail end of states in the country that have allowed golf to resume during the coronavirus pandemic.

Over the weekend, the Alliance of Massachusetts Golf Organizations had given a presentation to the Re-Opening Advisory Board on why golf would be safe to play. In a tweet on Tuesday, AMGO said it was looking forward to a "favorable response" to that presentation.

In an interview with WGBH News, Mass Golf Executive Director and CEO Jesse Menachem explained that a mixed bag of courses will open right away, while others will still wait a few days.

"Some have the ability to adopt these guidelines, get their staff prepared and open tee times this afternoon," Menachem said. "There definitely is a camp that's gonna wait maybe until Saturday, until the weekend starts, and allow for some time to make sure they're going about things the right way and in a very safe way."

Boston's two municipal golf courses, the William J. Devine Golf Course and the George Wright Golf Course will reopen on Saturday.

Menachem pointed out this will still be a scaled back version of the normal golf experience. He said spaced out tee time intervals will restrict the number of golfers on a course per day, which will impact revenue generating opportunities. He also said not allowing golf carts limits golfers who are not able to walk 18 or 9 holes.

Still, Menachem said he was pleased to start to get access for golfers.

"With the individual golfers, this provides such a needed relief," he said. "From a safe recreational activity standpoint, we know golf can be played in a very safe way. We believe that golf provides a great health outlet, from a physical and mental health standpoint."

But it's also a big moment for the golf business in the commonwealth.

"This is a month that we are so reliant on in the golf industry for revenue purposes and gaining interest in the golf industry for ... new golfers," Menachem said. "So we need to take advantage of any opportunity we have in this already short golf season here in the northeast."

Jay Miller, the director of golf course operations for Sterling Golf Management, which manages eight Boston area golf courses, said there are holes in the re-opening plan, but is still pleased courses can finally open and bring in some revenue. He said nearly all of the SGM courses reopened Thursday.

"My phone's ringing off the hook. ... People are just showing up to my golf courses. They're just showing up," he said. "I think the database on Mass Golf alone is over 100,000. And they sent a beautiful email saying all golf courses are now open, as of right now, with the policies and procedures that the golf course operator has to follow. But (golfers are) not gonna read those 19 bullet points. They're just gonna get in their car and drive to the golf course without booking a tee time or anything. 'I'm ready to play, I'm here!'"

The strict restrictions in place under the state's guidelines will be a burden for courses, according to Miller.

"We are happy to be open and the golfers are ecstatic, but the economics of the golf industry, we're gonna have a tough year. That's all there is to it," he said. "I mean, when one of my courses does $55,000 in banquet hall rentals before food and refreshments, that's $55,000 gone. So yeah, the trickle down effect of this is absolutely crushing."