The 27-hole Silkeborg Golf Club in Denmark has appointed Philip Spogárd to prepare a 10-year development plan.
“We have some very specific wishes to improve, among other things, the training area,” said golf manager Mads Faber. “In addition, the goal is a long-term development plan for the 27 holes, which also deals with care, maintenance and development of the course in collaboration with our greenkeepers. With Philip Spogárd’s ideas and thoughts, we will be able to further highlight the course’s qualities and ensure that things follow a common thread when we continuously invest in improvements.”
Faber says that Spogárd is respectful of the existing courses as well as having an eye for how to improve them. “Often it is just small adjustments that are needed that we do not even think about,” he said. “But we have a very similar view that golf should be a gaming and aesthetic experience for everyone, where the player is given the opportunity to experience success regardless of level.”
The agreement includes the construction of a new short course with three or four holes for beginners and juniors. The short layout will also allow the club’s coaches to conduct training and lessons more effectively.
The architect has been keen to involve members and get input from representatives of the club’s seniors, women, juniors, and elite players.
“I am very much looking forward to collaborate on a development plan for Silkeborg,” said Spogárd. “I have an enormously positive impression of the club, the employees and the courses, which are among Denmark’s best. However, the game of golf and technology changes over time, so all golf courses must be continuously adjusted to be up-to-date and challenge the players in a fair way that caters to golfers of all levels. A development plan is the ideal tool for planning ongoing work, so you ensure a common thread, raise the quality within the framework that the club has, and ensure that the money is used correctly in the first attempt.
“A club like Silkeborg is an example of where many things have been done really well over the years. My role as an architect will be – in such projects – to park my ego in the parking lot, and instead try to refine and improve what can be improved through minor adjustments. I am sure that with the right adjustments, the experience can be raised to an even higher level.”
The course has hosted the Made in Denmark tournament on the European Tour and is also the home course of Europe’s Ryder Cup captain, Thomas Bjorn.
In the latest issue of Dansk Golf, 59 per cent of Danish tour pros said that Silkeborg is Denmark's best golf course. “Although it is of course a completely unique and impressive result for the club, one must not sit back in self-praise and self-sufficiency,” said the club’s director Mads Rugholm. “We must not stop, but must continue to keep up with the times – and always want to be a few steps ahead of the development.”
The clubhouse, fitness centre, driving range and greenkeeper facility will also be renovated.