Players taking part in this week's GolfSixes will get a taste of the spectacular Oitavos Dunes. We round up the month's top course news
GolfSixes poised for Euro star
The European Tour players who opt to play in the GolfSixes Cascais this month will get to play one of the elite courses in Continental Europe.
Oitavos Dunes near Lisbon hosts the two-day event on June 7 and 8, with Ryder Cup players Jamie Donaldson, Stephen Gallacher and Edoardo Molinari among those playing in the innovative six-hole event.
They will play on a course widely regarded as in the continent’s top 20 and, as our images prove, thanks to its Atlantic Ocean views it has one of the best settings on the mainland.
Laid out by American architect Arthur Hills, several holes play towards the Atlantic but are far from the only stand-outs, with several inland-facing holes arguably the highlights.
It will be a strong contender in our Continental Top 100 in autumn 2019.
Revamp for The Belfry
The Belfry is home to three courses including the Brabazon, the four-time host of the Ryder Cup.
As a result, it was a certainty for a top-10 slot in our inaugural Top 100 GB&I Resorts that we released late last year.
However as we noted at the time, the golf side of the Warwickshire resort overshadowed the off-course facilities – and that despite a much-needed recent upgrade of the hotel.
Well the resort itself appears to agree with our assessment, because they are poised to add a further 144 guest rooms in a new building on the site overlooking the Brabazon.
A leisure club, next to the 18th hole of the PGA National Course, is also in their ambitious plans and will feature a family orientated leisure pool as well as a gym and studio rooms, cafe and changing facilities.
It should all be complete by the time we do our next GB&I Resorts ranking and it feels as if there is every chance one of the iconic names in British golf will improve on its ninth place in 2018.
EIGCA sets record in Paris
The European Institute of Golf Course Architects’ annual meeting was attended by the largest number of delegates in the event’s 19-year history.
The 122 members and partners of 22 nationalities golfed, shared knowledge, and networked over the course of five days in Paris.
The Presidential mantle was passed on as Christoph Stadler succeeded Ross McMurray of European Golf Design, as the Institute’s 11th president. Tim Lobb took over the role of vice-president.
Faldo honours Laguna Lang
“From the first time I came here when it was still jungle almost 10 years ago, I’ve always considered it a unique place,” says Sir Nick Faldo about Laguna Golf Lang Co.
So it is perhaps no surprise his Central Vietnam design has become the first course he has given signature status to.
“We knew the course was going to be different and special because you play through different environments,” adds Faldo.
“You go through the rice fields to the jungle. Then we’ve got beach and river and rocks.
“It really is a special course, with a memorability factor that is sure to keep golfers interested.”
The course has been updated of late, with new tees and trees cleared on the coastal holes to open up views of the beach and the East Sea. Rice paddies have also been introduced, with four hectares right in the middle of the course tended to by a family of water buffalo.
One of the most iconic landmarks in British golf is poised to receive a makeover.
The Marine Hotel, which was built in 1894 and overlooks Royal Troon, is to be refurbished in order to take it to a new level of luxury.
Its historic status meant listed building consents were required before the renovation could start on external areas such as windows, roofs and stonework, while work inside on all 89 bedrooms and the restaurant and bar will follow later in the year.
The refurbished hotel, which will remain open throughout the work, will be ready for the AIG Women’s British Open at Royal Troon in August 2020.