Oct 20th, 2015
Wentworth announces massive overhaul
Aims to be world's finest private golf & country club
Words: Tim Southwell Photography: Getty Images
Wentworth's no riff-raff policy is getting a serious ramp-up and it looks like it's going to be even harder and more expensive to get a round at Wentworth. Here's what they are saying:
Wentworth Club announces multi-million pound investment to become the world’s finest private golf and country club
Surrey, UK: Wentworth Club has announced its commitment to invest heavily to significantly enhance and improve its three championship courses, facilities and service quality. Under the leadership of Chief Executive Stephen Gibson, the Club will embark on an extensive upgrade of the facilities in 2016.
Stephen Gibson said, “Wentworth Club has a long history of golfing excellence. Since the Club opened in 1924 it has been a pioneering market leader in golf. History has been, and continues to be, made here. Over the past nine decades the Club has become synonymous with the world’s most prestigious championships, played by the world’s best golfers.
“The original vision for Wentworth, by the pioneer George Tarrant, was to set new standards for both a golf course and a residential family community. Today, over 90 years later, our announced commitment to invest in this British institution of sport enables us to build on our prestigious heritage and lay the foundations of the future success of the Club. All of the improvements will ensure a club of exceptional quality and will set unparalleled standards on and off the course. We are committed to investing significant sums to fulfil our vision and improve the facilities throughout the Club.”
The focus on investment comes after a period of consultation and extensive review undertaken by Wentworth Club’s Executive Team and owners Reignwood Group. Reignwood Group’s significant investment in London – through the Ten Trinity Square project and, most recently, its support of the London Symphony Orchestra – was recently commended by Her Majesty the Queen, and marks the ever-strengthening business and cultural partnerships between China and the UK. Earlier this year, Reignwood Group was awarded the Chinese Investment in UK award by The 48 Group Club, which honours responsible investors in the UK.
A vital part of the investment programme will see a major renovation of the West Course, carried out in association with Ernie Els Design (careful with the bunkers this time Ernie! – Ed). The improvements have been endorsed by Chief Executive of the European Tour, Keith Pelley, and will reinforce the West Course’s position as one of the world’s top golf courses.
Wentworth Club also plans to update both the Edinburgh and East Courses, again working with world-renowned golf course designers. The East Course will be restored to its original Harry Colt design. For the Edinburgh Course, Wentworth’s vision is to create a world-class golf course and state-of-the-art practice facility.
Together, these golf course improvements at Wentworth Club support Reignwood Group’s ambition to increase the competitiveness and quality of UK golf and country clubs on the global stage.
Further, as part of the commitment to providing an outstanding experience and service across all areas of the Club, the investment programme will include a total refurbishment of both the main Clubhouse and the Tennis & Health Club facilities.
The plans for wide-ranging improvements to the Club go together with a new membership structure to take effect from 1st April 2017. The current membership structure will be replaced with a family-based membership.
So there you have it.
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About Wentworth Club
For more than nine decades Wentworth Club has been regarded as one of the world’s finest and most prestigious golf and country clubs, famous as the home of the BMW PGA Championship since 1984, host venue to the World Match Play for 43 years and the birthplace of the Ryder Cup.
The golf club first opened in 1924 under the ownership of Walter George Tarrant, who made it a golf club with luxury housing around the edge of the East Course and then, the West Course.
The Edinburgh Course was opened in 1990 and played host to the Senior Masters Championship for 11 years. Tennis & Health Club facilities were opened in 1999. Over the Club’s 51 year history of hosting the Match Play and PGA Championships, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player, Severiano Ballesteros, Ernie Els and Nick Faldo feature among a distinguished roll call of winners.
Last year Rory McIlroy won the BMW PGA Championship en route to becoming World Number One, Open Champion and US PGA Champion, and this year the first Asian winner was crowned – the 21 year old Byeong Hun An.
Previously owned by Richard Caring, the Club was acquired by Reignwood Investments in September 2014, whose Chairman, Dr. Chanchai Ruayrungruang, founded Reignwood Group in 1984.
About Reignwood Group
Founded in Thailand in 1984, Reignwood Group is a global Chinese enterprise with headquarters in Beijing and offices in Singapore, Thailand, Canada, the USA and UK. Under the Chairmanship of Dr. Chanchai Ruayrungruang, the Group’s extensive financial resources and global network have created a strategic international platform that not only invests in a wide spectrum of industries, but gives back to society, improves the lives of local Chinese communities and assists in the protection of the environment. For more information, visit reignwood.com