Städler & Reinmuth Golfdesign has completed a new layout for Bades Huk Golf Club, near Wismar on Germany’s Baltic Sea coast, on the site of the abandoned Golf Club Hohen Wieschendorf course.
“Golf has no history in Eastern Germany,” said architect Christoph Städler. “Before World War II, there were only a handful of golf courses in that area. When the German Democratic Republic was founded after the war, these courses were abandoned and used for other purposes, because golf was not compatible with the ideology of the workers’ and farmers’ state. Golf had ceased to exist there – until the surprising reunification of the two German states in 1990.”
The Hohen Wiescehndorf course was established in 1991 by a local merchant who recognised the potential of the peninsular location jutting out into the Baltic Sea. “The budget for the original course was obviously very limited because the construction quality was very simple, with tiny push-up greens and tees, small flat bunkers and fairways without shaping,” said Städler. “Maintenance was also limited to the bare essentials, which had a negative impact on the quality of play.”
Ultimately this led to the club’s collapse. “By the end of 2018, operations and maintenance ceased and the golf course became overgrown and lay abandoned for some time,” said Staedler. “Some holes were only recognisable by the trees and hedgerows on their sides and almost had the character of ‘lost holes’.”
Austrian investor Oliver Soini acquired the land in 2019 and began plans to renovate the course to complement the resort development he had built in the corner of the site. Soini invited proposals and selected Städler & Reinmuth for the project. “We decided to disregard the original layout and create completely new, more challenging holes,” said Städler. “In doing so, we made optimal use of the gently rolling topography, characterised by moraines and ideally suited for golf, and of the beautiful tree stands which had grown up over the last three decades.”
Construction was overseen by Städler’s partner and co-designer Achim Reinmuth and carried out by German firm Josef Poetter Golf. “We followed the minimalistic approach, taking great care to carry out only minimal earthmoving and to keep the construction costs for the investor very low by using sand and gravel from the site for greens construction,” said Städler. “The selection of the grasses was based on the aspects of low-cost maintenance and the lowest possible water consumption.”
This approach was taken to achieve both constructional and economic sustainability. Städler added: “Due to the ideally rolling topography, we were still able to create an aesthetically stunning and player-friendly golf course with many visual highlights.”
The new course has a total length of 6,320 yards. “It has no championship calibre but is specifically designed for vacation and recreational golf,” said Städler. “Due to the undulating terrain with many slopes and because of the small greens which are well defended by bunkers and ponds, even ambitious golfers will find appropriate challenges and a lot of fun to play.
“What makes the Bades Huk golf course special is the panoramic views over the Baltic Sea, the scenic beauty and the exceptional tranquillity – three trump cards that are rarely found together and give hope for a high popularity.”
A new golf hotel and clubhouse is expected to be built by the end of 2025. “The new golf resort will form another important link in the chain of courses on the coast of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – a new point of attraction for golf tourists,” said Städler.