In the swing: Two Wicklow golf courses named among World’s best
Wicklow is fast becoming a global golf destination after two of the county’s courses were listed in the World’s Top-100 locations to play the sport.
Both The European Club in Brittas Bay and Druids Glen Hotel and Golf Resort in Newtownmountkennedy have made it onto separate Top 100 lists by two of the most respected golf publications – Golfscape and Golf Digest.
The two course are joined on both lists by numerous other Irish courses such as Adare Manor, Druids Glen, Portmarnock, Old Head of Kinsale, Lahinch, Royal Portrush and Royal County Down which came in second on the Golfscape list and first on the Golf Digest list.
The European Club was ranked 92nd on the Golf Digest list and it said of the course: “One of the newest courses to be built on genuine Irish linksland,
“The European Club is the lifetime accomplishment of Pat Ruddy, a golf writer from the 1960s and a golf architect from 1975 onward. He mortgaged his home to buy the land and spent five years designing and building it.
“It opened in 1992 and is still a family business today. Hard against the Irish Sea’s Arklow Bay, European Club rolls across untamed landscape with pot bunkers lined in railroad ties and two extra par-3 holes.
“It’s not always linkslike: The routing has returning nines, a marsh off the seventh tee, a pond in front of the 18th green and not a single blind shot anywhere. Ruddy says he was once offered to sell it for 22 million pounds and passed. That makes the Irish design priceless.”
While Golfscape ranks Druids Glen as the 69th best in the World and said: “Host of the Irish Open for four years in a row, this esteemed Pat Ruddy and Tom Craddock design opened its doors in 1995.
“Manicured fairways, spectacular water features, and historical landmarks all add to this locations county charm, considered on of the most enjoyable and challenging golf courses in Europe.”