Golf Design India prioritises accuracy over length at Rambagh

  • Rambagh Golf
    Golf Design India

    Golf Design India has completed a renovation of the golf course at Rambagh Golf Club in Jaipur, India

  • Rambagh Golf
    Golf Design India

    Architect Vijit Nandrajog has sought to enhance the fundamental qualities that define the course’s identity

Richard Humphreys
By Richard Humphreys

Vijit Nandrajog of Golf Design India has completed a renovation of the golf course at Rambagh Golf Club in Jaipur, India.

The course hosts the annual Jaipur Open on the Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI).

“Rambagh faced a pressing need for a comprehensive upgrade, given the lack of any renovations or improvements since its establishment decades ago,” said club captain Shriesh Sacheti. “Recognising this urgency, the decision was made to collaborate with Golf Design India to undertake an extensive renovation of the course.

“The project timeline was particularly challenging, with a narrow window of opportunity to complete all the necessary work and have the golf course ready for the winter season, ensuring minimal disruption to member play.”

Golf Design India began work in early summer 2023. “In the initial phase, our focus centred on revitalising 11 holes,” said Nandrajog. “The enhancements comprised a complete redesign of green complexes, new bunkering and new tees. Our team also implemented modifications and extended the irrigation system for those 11 holes as well.

“Given the course’s historical significance and its relatively shorter length by contemporary standards, our renovation prioritised accuracy over sheer length. Our commitment to offering golfers compact targets for their approach shots remains unwavering, even with the increased size of the greens.”

GDI has elevated some greens to accentuate the demand for accuracy and skill, reinforcing the character of the golf course. “All greens underwent a transformation, featuring captivating undulations and additional swales, adding a layer of complexity without penalising average golfers,” said Nandrajog. “We deliberately eschew indiscriminate modernisation, opting instead to safeguard and enhance the fundamental qualities that define the course’s identity.

“The site benefits from the presence of high-quality sandy soil, and we have capitalised on this natural attribute by integrating swales and runoffs around the greens, creating a distinctive and unique feature. The incorporation of these features is a hallmark of our design, offering a nuanced challenge for seasoned golfers while ensuring an enjoyable experience for the members. Our approach seamlessly leverages the inherent characteristics of the natural sandy soil to introduce these elements, enhancing both the aesthetic appeal and strategic complexity of the golf course.”

Maintenance and variety have both been improved via eliminating unnecessary bunkers and adding water to the par-three sixteenth. “The sixteenth is now more of a challenge,” said Nandrajog. “And this approach not only minimised maintenance concerns, but it also created varied pin positions, ensuring accessibility for members while challenging championship-level players.”