Grade A Achitecture - Adare Manor

The par 3 16th at Adare Manor

There are no words in the English language that can fully capture the essence of Adare Manor. It is truly a work of art and much of that stems from its present owner JP McManus. The Irish entrepreneur completed his purchase of the property on January 30, 2015 and quickly moved ahead in updating a number of elements tied to the 840-acre property.

Beyond the monumental building that is simply breathtaking to behold, McManus hired architect Tom Fazio to update the original Robert Trent Jones, Sr. design. Fazio’s main man on site for the duration of the effort was Tom Marzolf. The finished course emerged early in 2018 and quickly became a focal point of attention.

Among the most scenic and challenging of the 18-holes is the par-3 16th. The putting surface alone stretches a mind-boggling 86 yards wide - the second longest green in Ireland. The green runs on a diagonal from lower left to back right and players much cross a daunting lake that rigorously guards any frontal pin location. The entire green is massive - 1150 m2 / 12,378 square feet. Players have to gauge with pinpoint accuracy the approach play. The putting surface features an array of different movements and there are collection areas in the rear of the green for those who fail to remain on the green with their approach.  

When the pin is cut to the extreme far right it takes a jeweler’s touch to fly the fronting water and remain on the green and away from a rear bunker. The 16th is one only two greens on the course with a raised viewing platform at the back of the complex. The view is enhanced when arriving at the green and looking back to the tee and seeing the regal Adare Manor main building looming.   Adding to the prestige for Adare Manor will be its staging of the 2026 Ryder Cup Matches. The event will be held in Ireland for just the second time and is a testament to the persistence of its present owner.

There’s little question the 16th will play a pivotal role in many of the matches. “The final par-3, where under the pressure of a precious point at the Ryder Cup, the largest green on the course will look much smaller,” said, Andy McMahon, Director of Golf Operations. “The pin position can change this hole significantly. If the pin is back right, the sensible play is to aim at the centre of the green, however, there are many subtle slopes on this green and even from a successful tee shot a two-putt par is not a certainty.”

The 16th hole clearly demonstrates that great golf is not merely about brutish length but about being able to choose one’s club wisely and executing with unerring precision. “For the majority of the time even the best players in the world will be content with a par, avoiding any embarrassing disasters,” said McMahon.

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