RTJ II GOLF COURSE ARCHITECTS RIDES CHAMPIONSHIP WAVE
Courses worldwide host professional, amateur tournaments
Palo Alto. Calif. (June 24, 2022) – The PGA TOUR LatinoAmerica staged its season finale —the Bupa Tour Championship—at PGA Riviera Maya in Tulum, Mexico. This marks the second time this event came to a challenging course designed by Robert Trent Jones II Golf Course Architects (RTJ II) and is just one of many prestigious tournaments being contested on RTJ II designs this year and in the near future.
A TPC Riviera Maya, the 18-hole championship layout and a nine-hole course were cut deep into a limestone quarry to take advantage of the natural contours of the dense Mayan jungle. Thanks to their environmental awareness and the use of state-of-the-art technology, the RTJ II team integrated the jungle foliage, natural lakes, and cenotes into the course design.
According to Senior Project Architect Mark Voss, TPC Riviera Maya epitomizes the firm’s philosophy of challenging all levels of golfers, from club members to U.S. Open competitors. “We don’t necessarily approach each project with a championship in mind, but because we are committed to providing challenges across the skill spectrum, our courses frequently are selected for superior level competitions.”
Earlier this month, the PGA TOUR Champions Tour’s American Family Insurance Championship teed it up at University Ridge Golf Course, the home course of the University of Wisconsin Badgers men’s and women’s golf teams in Madison. RTJ II completed this layout in 1991, refined the course in 2007 and again in 2018-19. University Ridge has hosted the Champions event since 2016.
From July 1-3, the Arnold Palmer Cup will be played at the Golf Club de Genève for the first time, bringing the world’s best collegiate golfers to Switzerland’s premiere golf destination. The annual Ryder Cup-style competition of men and women college athletes pits the United States against their international counterparts.
“Golf Club de Genève’s beautiful setting, top conditions, and long history of supporting amateur golf makes it the perfect host for the 2022 Arnold Palmer Cup,” said Amy Palmer Saunders, chair of the Arnold & Winnie Palmer Foundation. “We’re honored to be celebrating the Club’s 100th anniversary with its membership in 2022.”
Founded in 1922, Golf Club de Genève features a course designed in 1973 by Robert Trent Jones Sr. and fully renovated by RTJ II in 2018. The 6,821-yard course offers views of the city, Lake Geneva, the iconic Mont Blanc, and surrounding Alps.
August 8-14, the 2022 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship will be contested at Chambers Bay in University Place, Washington. The course features towering sand dunes, massive fairways, and breathtaking views of the Puget Sound, giving the traditions of Scottish linksland golf a modern twist. The 250-acre course, built on the site of a former sand-and-gravel mining operation, is the centerpiece of a 930-acre park owned by Pierce County.
This is the fourth USGA championship to be held there following the 2010 U.S. Amateur, won by Peter Uihlein; the 2015 U.S. Open, won by Jordan Spieth; and the 2021 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball.
“Our philosophy calls for the creation of courses that combine playability for the average golfer with sufficient difficulty from championship tees to challenge the world’s best players,” explained Bruce Charlton, President of RTJ II. “Providing alternative lines of play adds another crucial strategic component to our courses. These and other tenets of our design philosophy play an integral part in creating the distinctive, creative, and site sensitive look of Robert Trent Jones II golf courses.”
Recently re-opened following an RTJ II renovation, SentryWorld in Stevens Point, Wisconsin is preparing to host next year’s U.S. Senior Open Championship (June 29-July 2, 2023). For two years, RTJ II worked closely with ownership (Sentry Insurance) and the USGA to modify the course: RTJ II lengthened select holes, narrowed fairways, and repositioned some bunkers to get the course ready for tournament play, including tweaks to enhance the spectator experience. The practice range also has been expanded.
Looking into the future, Cherry Hills in Japan, an original RTJ II design, will host the Japan Women’s Open in 2025. The firm is working with owner Shinwa Golf and the Japan Golf Association on re-positioning tees, fairway contours, and bunkering.
“We’ll be deeply involved with jobs big and small, many that have already begun, and some new ones scheduled to start next year,” reports Charlton. “The pent-up demand for golf has been released and we’re very excited to be partnering with many wonderful clients around the globe with intent of dialing up the fun factor of our great sport.”
For more information and details about RTJ II courses, award-winning sustainable designs, visionary water conservation, and world-class tournament venues, visit the company’s new website at www.rtj2.com.