Annika Sörenstam, a Swedish retired professional golfer, whose achievements rank her as one of the most successful female golfers in history, will design its first golf course in Europe at Estonian Golf & Country Club.
Located 20 minutes outside Tallinn, the new 18-hole course will replace the club’s existing nine-hole Stone Course, and will complement its 18-hole Sea Course, host of European qualifying for the 2011 Omega Mission Hills World Cup. The Sea Course has been ranked among the Top 100 courses in Continental Europe by Golf World magazine.
Sörenstam's firm was selected both for the caliber of her design work – she has designed five courses worldwide to date – and her appreciation of a project targeting families and golf tourists from Scandinavia and the rest of Europe. Sörenstam is currently drafting course plans with European Golf Design (EGD), the golf course design company of the European Tour and IMG, and the opening is scheduled for 2016.
“It’s exciting to be designing my first golf course in Europe, especially one that is close to home,” Sörenstam said, a native of Sweden and 10-time major champion. “The golf industry has been talking a lot about the need to develop golf facilities that are more flexible and family friendly, and Estonian Golf & Country Club is actually making it happen,” she added in press statement.
“I first met Annika in 2011 to discuss designing our second course and she immediately understood and empathized with our vision to further develop Estonian Golf & Country Club into an international leisure resort and spa,” Hanno Kross, Estonian Golf & Country Club Chief Executive, said.
“As well as being one of the most successful golfers of all time, she is family oriented and coaches young people, so she brings a contemporary perspective to the needs of a modern resort and the type of golf course and facilities that are required. When I first showed her pictures of the landscape overlooking the Gulf of Finland and the Jägala River Delta, it reminded her of where she grew up and so I think she immediately felt at home with this project,” Kross added.
Before stepping away from competitive golf at the end of the 2008 season, Sörenstam won 90 international tournaments as a professional, making her the female golfer with the most wins to her name. She has also been included among the "20 Swedish superstars in sports."
Estonian Golf & Country Club is situated in a rural coastal environment beside the Baltic Sea.
Editor: S. Tambur