With the purchase of Doonbeg in 2014, the vision of it's new owner, Mr. Donald J Trump, of a truly great links course, immediately began to take shape. The significant task of the redesign of Doonbeg rested with Dr. Martin Hawtree, a 3rd generation architect. Dr. Hawtree had already designed the spectacular course at Trump International Scotland, and with a portfolio that includes Lahinch, Portmarnock, St Andrew's and Muirfueld, we know the finished result would be remarkable and it is.
From Nov 1st - May 2016 only 9 holes will be in play due to golf course maintenance.
Work commenced on redeveloping the golf course in the Winter of 2014 and by the Spring of the following year several of the holes had been completed. Holes 4 through 12 and the 18th were completed along with a stunning brand new 14th hole and a new practice putting green. This work involved total excavation of the existing greens and tees. New root zone that was sourced and mixed on-site was brought in and shaped to Dr. Hawtree's liking and then new fescue/bentrgrass sod was laid, like a fine carpet, on the new greens and tees.
Work once again commenced in October of 2015 on the remaining 7 holes. Although the work done during the 1st phase saw some stunning changes to the golf course, the alterations that have been carried out during the 2015 Winter and Spring of 2016 are even more dramatic and will cement Trump Doonbeg's reputation as one of the finest links courses in the world.
Although the routing of the course remains largely unchanged there is definitely no mistaking that Dr. Hawtree has created a true links masterpiece at Trump Doonbeg. He has worked with the ethos that contoured short grass; swales and hollows, in close proximity to the greens can be every bit as challenging as long rough. This is seen on most holes with large areas of undulating surrounds that will swallow up any errant approach shots and encourage the traditional links 'bump and run' shots, Many newly crafted sod-walled bunkers also protect these new greens.
Nowhere is this work better understood then when standing on the newly sited 3rd green. It has been cleverly moved 30 yards forward and slightly to the left so that it now sits at the foot of the large dune that hosts the 16th tee. A large dune has also been built on the right of the hole to really give one the sense that they are nestled deep within the dunes.
Each hole now boasts ample teeing ground with striking new square tees which will allow 5 different sets of tees to be set up on a daily basis so that every standard of golfer is catered for.
The attention to detail does not stop merely with the greens and tees however, new rye-grass walkways replace the old white gravel paths. As much thought and attention has gone in to these new walkways as has gone in to the other areas of the course and the result is a highway that not only looks spectacular but provides the link that brings all of the holes together, making the course flow beautifully.
The result is a golf course that will take the golfer on a journey through the dunes, offering him/her open vistas of beautiful Co Clare coastline. It is rare for something so good to be improved to a level which leaves you instantly waiting for more. That will be the prevailing feeling when you play Trump Doonbeg.
On Saturday, May 14th, Trump Doonbeg will officially launch its fully renovated 18 hole golf course. Mr. Eric Trump will be on site over the weekend of May 14th & 15th to perform the ribbon cutting ceremony in recognition of the completion of these changes and to celebrate the wonderful golf course which is Trump Doonbeg.