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If you think about some of the most revered US courses - places like Pine Valley, Oakmont, NGLA, Augusta - they almost followed your fantasy.Coincidence? Maybe not. Who is going to put more effort into getting the most out of a site than the owner?
I wasn't saying architects should build and then operate their own courses. What I was really trying to find was some sort of scenario to open a discussion about how architecture may have evolved if the craft was driven solely by architects building what they loved to build...minus clients, raters, magazines, GCA...removing all influences other then one's own desire to create something cool, and then share it with the world. That's not reality, and never will be so any discussion about it is pure fantasy, hence my title.
So tom,If I won the lottery and bought another 300 acres of southern Oregon coastline real estate and said , " Tom, build me the best golf course in the world. I trust you completely. Let me know when it's done. " How different would this course be from Pac dunes or ballyneal?
Lou,for the sake of my fantasy I'm assuming there is demand for something unique and good.But, as I suspected, I'm getting pulled into reality. So here is a real question. Where does the money come from in the future for golf development? Will we see more developments funded by pension funds, banks, brokerage houses, or other large lenders? I'm thinking that stream is drying up. I'm thinking the next wave (or tiny ripple) of golf development comes from people who write checks where the pre printed name at the top has some resemblance to the hand written signature at the bottom. If I’m right, what now? Same old way? I think not. I can never answer that question, the money is no object one, because I can’t think that way, probably to a fault. While WP would seem extravagant to many, money here has always been a big deal, some of that as a result of me. If I could do whatever I wanted? I’d be happy to grow old running an old fashioned golf club. Location isn’t that big of a deal to me as long as the course is good, we can take care of it properly, and we’re stable enough to run off the knuckleheads.