Greatest-ever golfer says Cornwall destination ‘holds a special place in my heart’
JACK NICKLAUS has lavished praise upon the award-winning St Mellion International Resort as the Cornish destination celebrates its 25th anniversary.
St Mellion was the site of the Golden Bear’s first-ever golf course design in the UK and it has planned a series of events and promotions this summer to celebrate its landmark anniversary.
And whilst he has designed some fabulous courses all over the world, 18-time major winner Nicklaus insists that St Mellion ‘holds a special place in my heart’.
“I think it is a very good golf course,” said Nicklaus, who revealed he initially turned down two approaches to build the course before agreeing at the third time of asking. “It plays really well. It was a strong golf course when it first opened. I have always been very proud of taking the site given to us and turning into something that has now hosted at least a dozen professional or significant events. I think the golf course, hole for hole, turned out to be a very good golf course.
“I haven’t been there for a while, but it was always a good strong golf course, a strong test of golf.
“Although I am unable to get back there often, I know that the team at St Mellion has nurtured the course and taken great care of it and, because of that, they have been able to maintain its position as one of the most recognised and popular courses in the UK.”
Nicklaus added: “I learned recently that the St Mellion International Resort was nominated for England’s Leading Golf Resort, and I am hopeful that the experience we created there is chief among the reasons for that.
“From where we began to the fact we are here today celebrating the 25th anniversary of an English success story gives me a great deal of pride.”
He was unable to say where the course ranks compared to all of his other designs around the globe.
“Asking me to rate this course compared to others is like asking me to rate my children. I would never do that.
“I will only say that I believe St. Mellion - as a test of golf, as a design, and looking at each individual hole and its beauty - would rank very high.”