Golf Course Architecture - Issue 71, January 2023

24 TEE BOX THE B I G P I CTURE A distinctive thumbprint features on the green of the ‘Short’ fourteenth hole at the new Ballyshear Golf Links course at Ban Rakat Club near Bangkok, Thailand. In the background of the image is the green of the ‘Lagoon’ eleventh hole, a dogleg par four with a plateaued putting surface. Gil Hanse and his partner Jim Wagner designed the course as a tribute to Long Island’s famous lost Lido course. “The Lido is the holy grail for the ‘created’ golf course, the ultimate manifestation of what can be done with enough creativity, money and sand,” said Hanse. “The fact that it no longer exists makes it more romantic in nature and inspires all of us to elevate it in the pantheon of golf course architecture.” Covid restrictions prevented the duo from visiting the site since 2019, so their Caveman Construction team completed the project. “It’s incredible to think back – through two and a half years of Covid – to when this project began,” said Wagner. “Just ref lecting on what this property was when we showed up: a dilapidated, perfectly f lat golf course. What has it become today: a total and truly remarkable transformation from a golf course, landscape, earthwork and vegetation standpoint.” Photo: Chris Wise