Preview: Tarandowah Golf Club (Martin Hawtree)
Hidden on a remote sideroad about a half hour from Woodstock, sits the start of Tarandowah Golf Club, the first course created by famed English architect Martin Hawtree. [photopress:Tarandowah1.jpg,full,alignright]
Apparently lots of Canadian architects took a look at this property before Hawtree was awarded the project. That’s not because the land was great; to the contrary, the property is simply a farmer’s field. To add to this, the project appeared to have stumbled financially, given that it was to open a couple of years ago. Instead, it sat half shaped for a couple of summers.
Well, the project seems to be on again, judging from the photos I’ve included here and a phone call to the owners who said Hawtree has visited numerous times.
So what is Tarandowah? It appears Hawtree is creating a faux links in a farmers field, a strategy that worked well for Doug Carrick at Osprey Valley. It is still hard to distinguish all the features from the few holes I walked, but the bunkers are pretty amazing looking now and far from the typical look we see so often in Southern Ontario. Fairways seem to be tight, and the property is largely flat.
The owners said they expected to have nine holes open this summer, but from my walk around, that seems less than likely. There were some areas that were well along, but many that seemed at least two or three months away from growing in.
Right now there’s a practice facility open on site. Time will tell whether this course will amount to anything. Right now, it is just intriguing….