Castiglion del Bosco reduces water consumption by 20 per cent

  • Castiglion Phil Smith
    Steve Carr

    The Club at Castiglion del Bosco in Tuscany, Italy, has introduced a series of measures to enhance climate resilience

Richard Humphreys
By Richard Humphreys

The Club at Castiglion del Bosco in Tuscany, Italy, has completed a renovation of its golf course to enhance climate resilience and improve playing conditions.

The club has installed a targeted irrigation system that reduces water consumption by 20 per cent, added 135 kilometres of drainage that captures surface runoff within a closed system, expanded reservoir capacity, introduced new drought-tolerant grasses, and increased areas of native grass for biodiversity and to reduce the maintained turf area.

The project began in early 2023 and was overseen by architect Phil Smith, who collaborated with the late Tom Weiskopf on the original design in 2012. Smith has worked alongside Atlantic Golf Construction, Turfgrass Consulting, Bunker Solution and advisor Patrick Fogarty of Golf IQ.

“Castiglion del Bosco sets the benchmark for environmental sustainability,” said Smith. “When Tom and I designed the course, which overlooks a Unesco-protected landscape, we knew it was essential to tread lightly in a precious environment, which is why relatively little earth was moved and why the closed drainage system was an important innovation from the outset.

“Now, with new drought-tolerant turf variations, increased slit and curtain drainage lines and a new precision irrigation system, it will help maximise the efficient use of the closed drainage system and ensure the traditional style and sustainable roots remain an integral part of the course design.”

Smith and team have also added back tees, which lengthen the course to 7,500 yards, renovated 58 bunkers, and upgraded the practice area.

“We have invested significantly in sustainability innovation and water conservation, enhancing our long-term climate resilience,” said David Waters, general manager at the club. “Our members and resort guests expect world class playing conditions all year round: they also expect us to be responsible custodians of the environment. This important course renovation and upgrade achieves both objectives.”