Golf course designers are architects as well as golfers who lend their experience to projects. Globally, there are renowned former golfers, such as Greg Norman, who design signature golf courses.
What do they do?
The turf is growing — for golf course designers. About 195 Indian Golf Union-registered and 20 unregistered golf courses dot the country. And more are coming up.
“About 20 are under construction and 50 are at the planning stage,” says Ashish Vaishnava, consultant for golf course development and founder and CEO, AV Golf, who works with various architects for conception and execution of designs.
Vaishnava, who has played competitive golf but didn’t turn pro, now hits the greens on and off. He has been involved in the development of the Cambay Golf Course and Cambay Golf Academy in Gandhinagar (Gujarat), Emaar’s Mohali Hills Golf Course and the Cambay Golf Resort in Jaipur. Vaishnava, 28, is currently consulting with various developers for projects coming up in Ludhiana, Jaipur, Bangalore, Goa and Pune.
“There’s definite growth in India. The game is becoming popular. The prize money is increasing,” points out Vaishnava.
The market is ripening with work for those with the expertise. In India, a lot of former army officials who play the game are utilising their experience for golf course development. Some international golf course designers, too, have bagged projects in different parts of the country.
“The hub (for golf) is north India but south India is picking up fast,” says Vaishnava, adding, newer centres are catching up. “Tier-two cities are looking at golf courses because developers believe golf courses add value to projects and ultimately, premium on the property they are selling.”
The grass is greener in the east of India’s border. At the moment, south east Asia is the “hottest” market for golf course development. “The maximum number of projects is in China,” says Vaishnava.
Here, the scope in golf course has grown but “you can’t maintain it” as the only service you offer, says Amit Khullar, architect, Enar Consultants, which designed Delhi’s Lado Sarai golf course and redesigned Jaipur’s Ram Bagh golf course.
. Creativity — ability to put ideas to paper
. Quick learner, research skills
. Good understanding of the game, so you know the requirements of a player
. Ability to make the project environmentally sustainable
How do I get there?
Study science in Class 11 and Class 12, followed by a BArch programme. You can then go for a master’s in landscape architecture.