Doak to return to Scotland?


Sean Dudley

The Tom Doak-designed Renaissance Club at Archerfield, located next to Muirfield in Scotland, opened only last year, may soon be altered.

But the cause is not dissatisfaction with the original layout. Rather, the three additional holes which the developers hope to build, should add coastal drama to the already acclaimed course.

Shortly before construction began on the course in 2006, developer Jerry Sarvadi concluded a land swap deal with his illustrious neighbours at the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers, which saw a chunk of the Renaissance Club’s land traded in exchange for a chunk of duneland right beside the Firth of Forth, adjacent to the course’s current eleventh and twelfth holes, though significantly lower than the land on which these holes sit.

The course’s current first three holes, created originally with this in mind, would be removed from the regular rotation, transformed into six par threes and used as a practice loop.

Quoted in the Scotsman, Sarvadi said: “The overall feel will be something like the eighteenth at Pebble Beach or the holes around the turn at Turnberry. The 'wow' factor is going to be something special. Tom Doak has seen the land and routed the holes. All we're waiting to discover is what's under the brush and the buckthorn.”

The land is a Site of Special Scientific Interest. A preliminary environmental impact study has been completed by consultants STRI, and the planning application was filed with East Lothian Council in May. Initial response is expected in the next month. Should the project be given planning permission, the investment involved is believed to be around £1 million.