Dream Future Ryder Cup Venues
Since it was established in 1927, the Ryder Cup has visited a wide variety of venues across Europe and the United States, from revered championship hosts such as Royal Birkdale, Muirfield and Pinehurst, to more resort style destinations like The Belfry, The Greenbrier and The K Club, all of which boast their own unique chapter in the event's history.
Hosting a Ryder Cup is prestigious and (especially these days) big-business, with considerations given to the wider environment and ability each venue has to accommodate the infrastructure required, from hotels to hospitality and fan accessibility.
That would rule out many potential hosts, but let's dream for a moment, and consider where you would most love to see a Ryder Cup played at, no matter how unrealistic that prospect would be.
We have been thinking and picked out our fantasy venues, starting with Europe.
This is arguably the finest championship venue in the British Isles, a robustly challenging layout that consistently delivers on drama, as most recently showcased during Anna Nordqvist's Women's Open victory. With a thrillingly testing course, a stockpile of iconic history behind it, and proven infrastructure hosting capabilities, Carnoustie would be a tremendous setting for the Ryder Cup.
The Old Course at St Andrews
Naysayers will bemoan the difficulty of getting close to the action on the Old Course, but how much do you realistically see at a golf tournament anyway, especially at a Ryder Cup? It's about the setting and atmosphere, something that could be created around the venerable links with massive grandstands and the famed town of St Andrews as a backdrop.
With its large greens and various options from the tee, the Old is an intriguing layout for match play. Staging a Ryder Cup here would be another slice of history - and the Auld Grey Toun will have never seen a party like it.
Royal County Down
After memorably visiting The K Club in 2006, the Ryder Cup will make a return to the Emerald Isle at the stunning Adare Manor in 2027, but it's time for the event to establish a date in Northern Ireland, especially after The Open finally made its way back to Royal Portrush.
However, for this, it's Royal County Down - which some consider to be the world's finest course - to host the biennial match between Europe and the United States. Many a prestigious showpiece has been hosted on this links in the past, including the Walker Cup in 2007, which featured the likes of Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler.
The Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa
It's about time that the Ryder Cup found its way back to the Midlands. Home of England Golf, Woodhall Spa would seem like an ideal place, especially its magnificent Hotchkin Course, which Golfshake Ambassador Andy Picken described for us: "It is a quality and classy golf course. The design of the holes, the routing of the course, the incredible bunkers, the quality of the turf all create a superb golf experience."
Monte Rei North Course
For a dream continental European venue, the likes of revered Morfontaine and Royal Hague were considered, as was PGA Catalunya in Spain, but it's hard to ignore Portugal's Monte Rei North Course, which is celebrated by everyone who visits, not least Golfshake Ambassador Kevin Paver, whose Feature Review clinched its place here.
"Where can I start? How about this, Monte Rei is stunning. Simply stunning. The whole experience is one that you never want to end. The customer service is exceptional, and the golf course is to die for. Every hole you feel like you are the only people on the course, and it helps that every hole is amazing. If I could only play one golf course for the rest of my life, it would be this one."
So, that's Europe, but what about the United States? Here are some fantasy possibilities...
This will never happen unless the PGA Tour managed to secure ownership over the Ryder Cup, but we're dreaming in this exercise, and there's no denying that the Stadium Course would be a fine stage for the event. Perfect for hosting thousands of spectators, the Pete Dye creation is a fascinating layout that seems ideal for match play. Could you imagine if the fate of the cup came down to the famed par three 17th? Sign us up for that drama, please.
National Golf Links of America
When looking at highly exclusive, barely visible clubs, we could have chosen Pine Valley or Cypress Point, but in this case, we've gone for the National Golf Links of America on Long Island, New York, which has rich team match play pedigree having hosted the inaugural Walker Cup in 1922, before welcoming that event back in 2013.
Seeing this celebrated C.B. MacDonald design presented in a Ryder Cup would be a (fanciful) treat.
Oakmont Country Club has been home to nine US Opens, two US Women's Opens and three PGA Championships, and is renowned for its difficulty and lightning fast greens. It would be a captivating setting for a Ryder Cup, played across perhaps America's greatest major venue.
Johnny Miller, the 1973 US Open winner at Oakmont, said: "It's probably the best course in the world. This is the greatest course I've ever played."
The East Course at Merion
Another classic in Pennsylvania, Merion is now an "anchor site" for the USGA, with US Opens already confirmed through to 2050. But we would love to see a Ryder Cup at this famed club long before then, a place that crowned Bobby Jones, Ben Hogan, Lee Trevino and Justin Rose.
Yes, the property is too small, but it would be a joy to see this course presented in a somewhat less restricted manner than how it is offered when America's national championship comes to town.
Over in Washington State, Chambers Bay was a controversial host of the US Open in 2015, but no one can deny the drama that was provided by this expansive and somewhat outlandish "links-style" public course. However, now matured, the future of this venue on the big stage could be as a match play setting, a format that may be better suited for a design that requires imagination and creativity.
So, there you have it, just some "dream" future Ryder Cup host venues that will probably never happen. Think of places that you would love to see the event taken to and let us know why!
The Ryder Cup is unlike any other tournament in golf and the atmosphere is something that every golf fan should experience. The experts at Golfbreaks.com can help with all aspects of your Ryder Cup experience, from accommodation and ticket packages to hospitality and travel and playing some of the fantastic nearby courses.
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