The spectacular golf course attached to The Farm at Cape Kidnappers resort in New Zealand reopened in August after a comprehensive seven-month renovation of both its greens and fairways. It will now be in prime condition for the upcoming summer season (in the Southern Hemisphere). Designed by famed American golf architect Tom Doak, the par-71 course has been a particular favorite of Andrew Harper members, in part because of its dramatic clifftop situation, hundreds of feet above the ocean. (This year Cape Kidnappers was rated No. 21 in the world by Golf Digest magazine.)
The greens have now been restored to their original dimensions, the top 4 inches of turf having been removed. The hollowed out “shell” of the old green surface was filled with sand and then smoothed and graded to be as close to the original shape and contour as possible. A member of Doak’s crew was on hand to confirm and approve the final grades and undulations. Restoration of the fairways has been similarly laborious, with the top 2 inches of turf having been cut away and replaced with new and improved bentgrass cultivars.
Cape Kidnappers has long been a high point of a New Zealand golf odyssey. After an unforgettable journey through the country, our golf correspondent wrote: “The track plays firm and fast, like a traditional links course, and the back-to-back par 5s at Nos. 15 and 16 are revelations.” Cape Kidnappers is now ready to amaze the next generation of American travelers.