Renowned golf course designer Pat Ruddy set out on a helicopter ride over Ireland in search of the perfect golf course location which he found on Ireland’s east coast, in picturesque Brittas Bay, where he opened The European Club in 1993. This golf course may be younger than most in Ireland but what it lacks in history it makes up for in its continuous evolution with Pat, who has designed 36 golf courses, at the helm this course is going from strength to strength.
Don’t let the name of this golf club fool you, it couldn’t be more Irish if it tried! Being family run and managed by Pat’s two sons means every golfer, old and new, receive the ultimate Irish welcome – Céad Míle Fáilte. It is this atmosphere that sets it apart from other golf courses in Ireland.
There are 246 true links golf courses in the world, and Ireland plays host to an astounding 58 of these which are easily accessed across our island. What makes Ireland truly special for golfers is the exciting dunes, exhilarating golf designs matured through the years and the spectacular diversity of views – think rolling landscapes, magnificent mountains, ancient woods, shimmering lakes – all delivering an extra dimension for golfers. The European Club captures this essence with its sweeping sea views, towering dunes and close proximity to Brittas Bay beach in county Wicklow, aptly named The Garden of Ireland.
Continuously recognised by international golf course rankings, The European Club has one of the longest links at 7,377-yards and golfers are advised to select a set of tees fit for their game. Design features include the world’s longest green (128yd) at the 12th hole and incredibly deep bunkers lined for maximum definition and difficulty. The 7th hole is a highlight at 470-yard par four, it is frequently ranked in the world’s best 100 holes. There are many quirks along this golf course that make it an enjoyable, challenging and absolute must-play golf course when visiting Ireland.
Some of the world’s best golfers have played on this golf course. In 2007 and 2008 Padraig Harrington played the Irish Professional Championship here the week before the British Open, which he went on to win both years. Rory McIlroy won the Irish Amateur Championship here in 2006. Tiger Woods set the links record at 67 and went on to describe the course; “What wonderful optical illusions. I thought some of those par-4s were par-5s. A great links.” – high praise indeed.
Regarded as the world’s leading links designer, Pat is constantly reviewing this course to ensure that it remains world class while not disrupting the life of the links. Golfers are guaranteed to never tire of this course with Pat’s fresh approach making it even more enjoyable and challenging for any golfers’ skills and expertise. This golf course is an ideal inclusion for any golf group visiting the East coast of Ireland as it promises a truly wonderful experience from start to finish.