Designers' Choice: Everyone Plays Favorites — Including the Game's Best Architects

Designers’ Choice: Everyone Plays Favorites — Including the Game’s Best Architects

[IMAGE “1924248” LEFT] Favorite course by a dead architect: It’s silly to pick just one of them.
On different days it might be
National Golf Links, the Old Course
at St. Andrews, Cypress Point,
Royal Melbourne or Crystal Downs.

Favorite course by a living
architect (other than yourself):
Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw’s Sand Hills.
I walked the routing just before they started
construction, and I counted 12 or 13 holes
where they could just mow out the green
without any artificial contouring. Amazing.

[IMAGE “1924249” LEFT] Favorite course by a dead architect: Old Tom Morris’s Machrihanish,
minus the final two holes. The course
reminds modern designers to respect
the landscape and not move heaven
and earth where it’s unnecessary.

Favorite course by a living
architect (other than yourself):
Kyle Phillips’ Kingsbarns.
He created a dunescape that
appears completely natural,
even to the trained eye.

[IMAGE “1927395” LEFT] Favorite course by a dead architect: From a design perspective, Pinehurst No. 2.
It’s a totally tree-lined course where a tree
doesn’t come into play, and water hazards
are nonexistent. There is water on the
16th hole, but it’s not really in play.

Favorite course by a living
architect (other than yourself):
Pete Dye’s Harbour Town. I’ve always had a
great deal of respect for Pete Dye — he had
a strong influence on my design career. Of
course, I did have a little to do with Harbour
Town, since I consulted on the project!

[IMAGE “1924250” LEFT] Favorite course by a dead architect: Alister MacKenzie’s Augusta National
is green and white — pristine, dark
green with the brilliant white bunkers.
Pine Valley has natural brown tones
with shaggy grass. Hard to choose.

Favorite course by a living
architect (other than yourself):
Jack Nicklaus’s Muirfield Village and
Pete Dye’s Stadium Course at PGA West.
Muirfield’s rolling countryside tests the
world’s best players every year, while PGA
West revolutionized golf with its contouring.

[IMAGE “1924246” LEFT] Favorite course by a dead architect: Pine Valley — it’s a
great mix of holes
with a lot of strategy.

Favorite course by a living
architect (other than yourself):
Sand Hills. Like Pine Valley, it’s
got great variety and strategy,
and the setting is one of golf’s
all-time best theaters! I could
say the same for Pacific Dunes.

[IMAGE “1924251” LEFT] Favorite course by a dead architect: The National Golf Links and
Cypress Point. The National is the
most amazingly intriguing course in America.
Cypress Point is the most beautiful pairing of
golf architecture and landscape architecture.

Favorite course by a living
architect (other than yourself):
Tom Doak’s Pacific Dunes.
When I walked off Pacific
Dunes, I asked myself, “On our best day, at
the absolute top of our game, could our team
have done this well?” I have serious doubts.

[IMAGE “1924252” LEFT] Favorite course by a dead architect: Cypress Point. Arguably the
most beautiful setting for
golf, with strategically diverse
and memorable holes.

Favorite course by a living
architect (other than yourself):
Pacific Dunes. Doak took a brilliant piece
of linksland and delivered a great golf
experience, refusing to allow traditional
notions of par sequence or length to
compromise what the land called for.

[IMAGE “1924245” LEFT] Favorite course by a dead architect: Donald Ross’s Pinehurst No. 2.
The great classic courses demand
imagination and experience, not
simply the application of power.
No. 2 is unexcelled in this way.

Favorite course by a living
architect (other than yourself):
TPC Sawgrass. By forcing
doubt into the players’
minds, Pete Dye created
a new level of challenge.


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