The renovated North course at the Quinta do Lago resort in Portugal will reopen on 7 October. European Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley will be on hand for the ceremony, only a week after the Gleneagles event.
McGinley has collaborated with American architect Beau Welling for the North course rebuild. The course redevelopment is part of a €29m investment programme that has been undertaken by Quinta do Lago since 2009, with a further €21m planned to be spent on its facilities in the next three years.
Among the changes introduced on the par-72, 6,776-yard course, which has been closed since last December, all greens, tees, bunkers, irrigation, drainage systems and cart paths have been rebuilt, with four sets of tees introduced on each hole to accommodate players of all levels. A total of 379,800 tonnes of earth has been moved, and an additional 93.5km of new piping being fitted on the new layout.
A low-cut bermuda grass approach has been introduced around greens to create more recovery shot options. Cool season rough has been planted to give the holes more texture.
The renovation has also allowed Quinta do Lago to reduce its impact on the environment by using recycled water and solar energy to maintain the course. The reduction of grassed areas will lessen the impact on the environment and the new design will include the creation of some new animal and plant habitats.
Welling said: “We have kept the routing of the North course intact, but we have totally reworked the golf experience within the existing corridors. Specifically, we have worked very hard to make the experience be more playable for higher handicappers while at the same time created precise target areas for the better player looking to score.”
See the July 2014 edition of GCA for a review of the North course renovation.