Golfing for gold

28 Mar 2011

Tuscan golf course design draws on local tradition and respects the natural landscape

In future the area of Tuscany in Italy will be more attractive for golf enthusiasts. To the south of Pisa, in the heart of Tuscany, two new golf courses have been built in the last two years. They belong to a 1.100 hectare-large Tenuta di Castelfalfi development, which consists of an ancient Borgo (Village on a Hill) with a Castello, a few Vineyards and an abundance of olive trees which surround the area, along with several new hotels and housing areas which are to be built in the typical Tuscan style.

At the centre point of the resort are these two 18-hole golf courses with a comfortable practice area adjacent to the new Golf Academy. The contract for the design and artistic site supervision was given to Rainer Preißmann and Maximilian Frhr. von Wendt, with their respective design team Deutsche Golf Holding Ltd in cooperation with Dr. Arch. Wilfried Moroder from MPS - Golf Design in Bolzano, Italy.

The design work included the renovation and remodelling of an existing golf course, originally designed by Sen. Mancinelli some 20 years ago, which had been neglected over these last two decades.

With respect to the beautiful landscape features, the existing golf course was re-designed and elevated to a modern and more strategical standard. Blind holes and steep inclines have been totally eliminated and the new holes have been completely re-designed and integrated into the existing typical landscape of Tuscany.

The complete planning process was based on the sustainable golf development guidelines of the European Institute of Golf Course Architects (EIGCA) and the office's own philosophy to respect and enrich the character and aesthetic qualities of a landscape as well as the environmental conditions.

The climatic situation consists of hot summers with low rainfall and a season from October until May during which heavy rainfall is possible. Therefore, the complete resort needs an intelligent system to collect water during the times of heavy rainfall to utilise in the dry period. So an important task was to optimize the ability to collect, store and re-use surface run-off and other water supplies.

Key Facts

Sport in architecture

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