Thomson Perrett’s remodel of Manly Golf Club already a success

The full remodel of the Manly Golf Club is nearing completion and has already proven to be a huge success having received the tick of approval by the Golf Club and its members.  Feedback from members has been extremely positive and the remodel has led to 122 new members signing up since the works began in September 2009.  

A club rich of history but needing a refresh, the club gave leading golf course architects Thomson Perrett a clean canvass and commissioned a full rebuild of its course.  Thomson Perrett set about building a course which would give members a greater challenge in a more aesthetically enjoyable landscape.  The rebuild has led to new estuary’s and waterways,  new green complexes, strategic bunkering and a completely new course routing. 

The first new 9 holes has been open for play since mid 2011 and the feedback has been sensational.  Manly Golf Club General Manager Ed Hynes said “The members have embraced the new layout after much anticipation. The general feedback is that it is a lot more challenging than the old course due to the newly introduced waterways and native planting. In addition, the turf has been changed from Kikuyu to Windsor Green Couch which is a much different surface to hit off, initially a lot firmer under the ball. The members are delighted with the new green complexes that provide far more movement and undulation than the original greens. However, the Club has maintained the tradition of small greens that are ‘well protected’.

Renowned for their respect for landscape and respect for the environment, Thomson Perrett have delivered on both of these fronts at Manly.  Ed Hynes said “I think the new estuary’s and waterways that have been introduced throughout the new North Links have made an enormous difference to both visually and playability. In addition, this has improved the drainage on the course immensely and the bird and marine life seen throughout the waterways is now plentiful.”

In relation to the playability of the course, Club Head Professional Phillip Baird said “While Manly Golf Club may be viewed by some as a shorter layout measuring 5913 metres  from the Championship Tees, what is lost in length is certainly gained in the strategic bunkering, water hazards and new green complexes. The new North Links course calls for well placed driving and accurate iron shots. A major emphasis is now placed on members short game with the demands of the firm and fast running greens. We are very proud of the new layout and design and look forward to the completion of the South Links later this year.”

Asked about his favourite holes, Phillip said “The Par 3’s are proving to be strong with both Holes number 4 & 7 providing tricky targets.  The 4th has an elevated green surrounded with bunkers front and back and the 7th Hole  is a 143 metres in length without any bunkers but probably the toughest of targets throughout the new layout. Holes 5 & 8, both Par 4’s are my personal favourites as they demand accuracy off the tee which set the golfer up for an attacking approach shot to undulating greens.”

Subject to weather, the Club hope to open the entirety of the course in June 2012 once the South Links has grown in.