European Ryder Cup Captain Sam Torrance took time out from the Open Championship in St Andrews to inspect the progress of his first ever golf course, currently being built at St Andrews Bay in Fife.
Torrance has based the eighteen hole, par 72 championship course on initial drawings by the late Gene Sarazen. Seeding of the front nine holes has now taken place and the course will be ready for play by the summer of next year.
The £50 million St Andrews Bay resort will also feature a second golf course designed by Sarazen and Bruce Devlin, who has designed over 150 courses worldwide and played in the PGA and Senior PGA tours. This course will open in 2002. Both courses have been designed to maximize on the stunning views of St Andrews and the sea. On Torrance’s course, each par three either plays towards the sea or has the sea as a backdrop.
Environmental factors have also been given high priority in the design process. Forty per cent of the golf course area will be re-established or established land to help stabilise the ground and protect the deer, grouse and partridge on the site.
St Andrews Bay is owned by US entrepreneurs Dr Don and Mrs Nancy Panoz and will include a 209 bedroom hotel and conference centre as well as the two golf courses. The development will join the Panoz’s Ch®teau à‰lan branded group of international golf resorts which includes Diablo Grande Golf Resort & Spa, California; Ch®teau à‰lan Winery & Resort, Georgia and Ch®teau à‰lan Sebring International Raceway Hotel in Florida. Plans are currently underway to build other similar resorts in Europe.