Golf is played on some of the most stunning landscapes in the world that flow with fresh air and breathtaking scenery. Whether a course is in the highlands, dense woodland, coastal region, desert, or swampy areas, reputable designers are highly-skilled in bringing out the best in every region.
The golf course design business is very lucrative, with top architects earning significant sums to design world-class courses. Every renowned course designer has some unique touch, that separates their work from the rest of the pack.
Top Ten Famous Golf Course Designers
If you enjoy watching The PLAYERS Championship unfold at TCP Sawgrass (Players-Stadium) in Ponte Vedra, you will already familiar with the work of renowned course designer Pete Dye.
Dye is the brains behind over 100 courses worldwide, such as the Dominican Republic’s Casa de Campo (Teeth of the Dog), The Ocean Course on Kiawah, South Carolina, and Whistling Straights (The Straits) in Wisconsin.
New York-born course architect Tom Doak honed his skills as Hall of Famer Peter Dye’s student. As a result, Doak is a legendary designer in his own right, credited with brilliant works such as Cape Kidnappers in New Zealand, Barnbougle Dunes in Tasmania, and Pacific Dunes in Oregon.
Doak’s designs take a minimalist approach, and he boasts incredible links-style and traditional layouts courses.
Alister MacKenzie trained as a surgeon before eventually switching to golf course design. The move proved quite fruitful for the British architect, as he is behind the famous Augusta National Golf Club, where the Masters Tournament takes place every April.
MacKenzie’s other notable course designs include The Jockey Club in Argentina and Titirangi Golf Club in New Zealand.
The Golden Bear is one of the most well-recognized personalities in golf, excelling immensely as a professional player and extending his winning streak to course architecture.
The Nicklaus Design company boasts eight offices in six countries and has brought to life over 300 world-class courses, such as the Muirfield Village Golf Club in Ohio, Sebonack Golf Club in New York, and Castle Pines Golf Club in Colorado.
English master course designer Harry Colt is famous for the purity of his courses, as he didn’t enjoy moving ground but instead let nature dictate the designs.
The Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland is a perfect example of his brilliance, as are his redesigns of Sunningdale and Muirfield courses.