Mackenzie & Ebert get underway with redevelopment project at historic English links course
By Martin Inglis
Prince's golf club, host venue of the 1932 Open Championship, is in the middle of extensive and ambitious redevelopment of the Himalayas nine.
The club hired renowned international golf course architects Mackenzie & Ebert to handle the reconstruction, which started recently, with the Himalayas open to minimal disruption throughout the process.
Aside from its 1932 Open, Prince’s also co-hosted The Amateur Championship in 2013 and did so again earlier this year.
Rob McGuirk, general manager of Prince’s Golf Club, said: “The entire club is very excited by this project. We believe Mackenzie & Ebert’s plans will transform the Himalayas Nine into one of the finest stretches of links golf in the country.
“We’re committed to continuous improvement at Prince’s and this is certainly the most ambitious phase of development the club has seen for decades.”
The works will re-route the nine significantly, with the current second and third holes combining to make a long par-5. The new second tee will be located to the right of the existing first fairway and will play to a maximum of 615 yds.
A short, signature par-3 fifth hole will then be inserted playing towards the sea after the existing fifth (new fourth) hole. These changes will increase the par of the nine to 36. The new fifth hole will measure between 120 and 160 yards with a variety of tees to be designed.
Another notable change is to the current eighth, which will become a short, drivable par-4 with permanent wetlands either side that will be strategically and ecologically valuable. Strategy will also be dictated by the existing bunkers.
A new set of tees for the hole, to be placed atop dune ridges present to the right of the existing hole, will also allow the practice ground in front of the clubhouse to be developed further.
Work will begin with the construction of the new fifth hole, below. This will be followed by the new second fairway development and the construction of new teeing areas on the second, third, fourth, sixth, eighth and ninth holes. Once this work is done, the focus will turn to the fairway bunkers.
The planned completion date for construction is before the end of the year with the new holes opening in the late spring/early summer of 2018.
With views over Sandwich Bay and Royal St. George’s Golf Club, Prince’s boasts 27 holes of modern championship links golf, as well as excellent overnight accommodation and dining in its 2AA Rosette brasserie.