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Stunning Golf Course On The Cards For Kangaroo Island

The view from the proposed first tee at The Cliffs on Kangaroo Island in South Australia.
Construction of a stunning 18-hole clifftop golf course on the eastern part of South Australia's Kangaroo Island could begin before the end of the year.

The South Australian Government announced last month, that Development Authorisation had been granted to Kangaroo Island Links Pty Ltd for a revision to a previously approved golf development on pristine Kangaroo Island in Australia.

Known as The Cliffs, Kangaroo Island and constructed on a premium 600-acre parcel of ocean front land in Pelican Lagoon, the 18-hole golf course takes full advantage of the areas rolling sand dunes and sweeping coastal views. Much of the course is set atop 25-metre high cliffs and played directly adjacent to the Southern Ocean.

Beyond golf, the project includes a luxury clubhouse/lodge and 180-bed hotel as well as scope for restaurants, conference facilities, and a luxury day spa and health club. There is also provision for a residential component with a select number of private dwellings offering glorious elevated views across the golf course and along the island’s dramatic coastline.

The view from the proposed par-three 14th tee.

The senior team responsible for delivering the project has significant experience in golf course design and construction with a group resume including Cape Wickham Links on King Island, recently ranked the 24th best golf course in the World (Golf Digest) and Australia’s #1 Public Access Course (Golf Australia magazine).

Darius Oliver, publisher of Planet Golf and co-designer of Cape Wickham, is responsible for the design of The Cliffs, while Kangaroo Island Links Pty Ltd director, Andrew Purchase, is again in charge of the golf course construction.

Oliver told iSeekGolf that, under a best-case scenario, construction on The Cliffs could begin by November and be completed in the Spring of 2019.

Like Cape Wickham, it was Purchase who first found this golf land, and Oliver who worked with the State Government on approval for the revised golf course routing.

Committed to delivering the golf course component at The Cliffs, Kangaroo Island Links will be exploring joint venture (JV) opportunities with interested parties for both the resort and residential elements of the development.

The view from the top of the fairway on the proposed par-four 18th.

Designated by the South Australian Government as a Major Project, The Cliffs, Kangaroo Island was initially planned by the Programmed Turnpoint Group in association with a celebrity golf design company, and approved in February 2016.

It was purchased by Kangaroo Island Links last July, and audited by Oliver soon after.

Oliver’s task was to determine whether the site had world-class golfing potential to match its breathtaking, natural setting.

By pushing the golf holes closer to the cliffs and moving the clubhouse onto the coastal crown reserve, the project team believes they now have the potential to build for South Australia, and Kangaroo Island, one of the world’s most spectacular destination golf courses.

The view of the approach to the proposed 13th green site.

Whilst considering the various resort amendments sought by Kangaroo Island Links, the golfing and environmental upsides were deemed considerable by the South Australian Government and approval granted on the basis that a world-class golf experience on Kangaroo Island was critical to the sustainability of the development.

As with other projects on Kangaroo Island, the golf course will benefit from an $18 million upgrade to the island airport, and recently announced direct Qantas flights from Melbourne and Adelaide starting in the summer.

"We acquired the site for The Cliffs because we knew how much potential it had,” said Purchase.

“We’ve taken full advantage of the dramatic coastal views, which are available across the site, and have seven holes wrapping directly around the clifftops as well as ensuring fantastic views from the hotel site and across the course.

The view from proposed par-three 8th tee.

Designer Oliver adds, “Like on King Island, the golf site at Pelican Lagoon has tremendous natural potential and is ready made for great golf. The vast majority of holes are just sitting there on the ground, and will require little more than clearing, grassing and some light shaping.

"While the golf along the cliffs is stunning, I believe the inland holes to be at least as good, and arguably the most interesting on the course. Being able to create such a fun layout on Kangaroo Island and along such a beautiful stretch of coastline is a real thrill.

"Golfers from all corners of the globe are going to fall in love with this place. There isn’t anything like Kangaroo Island anywhere in the world.”

Kangaroo Island Links is currently working with the South Australian Government to satisfy conditions on the Development Authorisation. The team hopes to confirm a construction schedule, and make further golf course design announcements, in the near future.

GENESIS GREAT GOLF ROAD TRIP: MARGARET RIVER, WA

iseekgolf.com