Dr. Martin Hawtree’s father and grandfather before him designed and laid out many courses worldwide but are perhaps best known for the Open Championship course, Royal Birkdale. The Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St.Andrews task Dr. Hawtree each year with the design modifications at all their Open Championship venues before each tournament. Dr. Hawtree’s fierce adherence to working with the natural environment has allowed him to create the most natural links golf courses on this site - Trump International in the North East of Scotland.
“I was made aware of Mr. Trump’s ambitions to produce a world-class, 18-Hole links course, following the great tradition of Scottish links golf, capable of one day hosting a major golf championship. My inspection of the site left me in no doubt of its exceptional qualities of environment as well as potential for golf of a very high order and I very quickly came to share his vision and seize a rare opportunity to create a new links course of quite extraordinary power, beauty, challenge and interest.
The design of the golf course has involved an iterative process of studying the site in great detail, entering into a dialogue between the norms of classic and championship golf course layout on the one hand the physical, ecological, economic constraints of the site on the other; working out ideas and schemes for the layout as hypotheses and then testing them against the site. The dialogue was enriched by the client on the one side and the project’s environmental consultants on the other. Indeed the iterative process has not stopped and will not stop until grass starts to germinate. Working closely with the environmental scientists the vision pivots on sensitive integration into this landscape.
The golf course follows a classic pattern of two out-and-back loops of nine holes. All 18 holes thread their way engagingly through the dunes, rising here to find views of the sea and coastline, plunging there into secluded valleys, offering a sequence of superlative topographies, landscapes, alternating between spaciousness and enclosure, then panoramic view, and the whole time a rich texture of vegetation and wildlife habitats surrounding the golf holes. The golf course will lack for nothing. The landscape framework of the site comes close to an ideal. There is nothing missing and the layout as conceived would contain no weak holes. It will produce simply the most dramatic, stimulating, invigorating stretch of golf anywhere I have seen in my career”. Dr. Martin Hawtree
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