Dun Laoghaire Golf Club, rebuilt in a new location and opened for business in July this year, has employed a unique signage design solution.
By Charles de Haan
New world class courses seem to be something of a speciality in the Republic of Ireland. Aside of having some of the world’s best links courses such as Portmarnock, Royal Portrush and Royal County Down, thanks to the amount of televised golf we’ve all enjoyed watching some newer names such as Mt. Juliet, The K Club, Druids Glen, The European and Fota Island are becoming just as familiar.
Now another course is about to be added to that list. With an almost magical sense of timing, local resident Padraig Harrington became a fully paid up member just before going on to win the Open at Carnoustie. The new 18 hole course has been designed by world famous golf architects Hawtree, and a further nine holes have also been created to provide a 27 hole offering.
A unique signage design solution that looks world class
The standards set by the new course and clubhouse are impressive. In setting the brief for the signage, Mark Westernborg, leading the golf course’s development on behalf of Hawtree, wanted to ensure that the signage system from the entrance around the clubhouse and to the first and last tee was:
• in keeping with the local environment,
• matching the stone used for the clubhouse exterior,
• looking the part for Ireland’s latest world class club and course,
• doing a first class job of directing vehicles and people around the complex, • promoting the Dun Laoghaire brand,
• going to have a considerable lifetime and be easy to maintain.
Quite a tall order, in fact. So following a pitch and presentation by several companies to all concerned, Eagle was chosen to design, project manage and deliver the signage system. The framework of the design solution was based on exploiting two sign materials in which Eagle specializes: deep etched zinc and cast bronze, and on Dun Laoghaire GC’s logo, which is based on an elegant and unique shield, the top of which is gable-angled. This provided the key to portraying the club’s powerful branding, and is reflected in the shape of each and every sign following the same unique gable angle.
Donegal quartz stone was being widely used for the exterior of the clubhouse and for many of the walls around the course. After a trip to the local quarry in Donegal, Eagle hand picked some impressive monolithic boulders for both the measured mark and hole information tee signage. In turn, this led to using cast bronze for any sign needing to be affixed to the stone of the clubhouse or the academy buildings.
The clubhouse also has superb stone terraces with hardwood balustrades. Eagle were able to carry this theme on to directional and information signage for the whole complex by mounting the deep etched zinc signage with appropriate graphics for information onto hardwood frames.
Going the extra mile to achieve spectacular results
Pat Smith is the chief executive of golf at Dun Laoghaire, and was heavily involved in the new course’s development. “We set Eagle a very tough design and technical brief, but they came back and gave us a solution that’s every bit as impressive as the course and the clubhouse,” he said.
“Having agreed Eagle’s initial design recommendations, their team did a great job in turning concepts into reality. The project management on a job like this is not to be under-estimated. It was Eagle that negotiated with the local quarries, chose the boulders and monoliths, arranged the logistics, ensured everything fitted into its correct place, and got it all installed correctly. Eagle delivered on all their promises.
“Like anything complex, there were always new problems that seemed to pop up at the wrong time, but Eagle’s team stayed very calm at all times and just sorted all the issues out to our complete satisfaction. Eagle really did go the extra mile, and the results are just spectacular