Behind the Design

Tom Doak

Internationally renowned golf course architect and designer of this classic 18-hole links style course. His aim was to create one of the best golf courses in the world which he achieved with this unique piece of land at Gunnamatta.

A master of 21st century golf architecture, course architect Tom Doak knew he was onto a good thing when he set his eyes on St Andrews Beach. Doak’s minimalist design philosophy combined with the unique St Andrews Beach landscape fused to create a pure golfing experience.

While most links-style courses tend to conjure the thought of unbearable winds and compromised play, the natural valleys and native trees across the Gunnamatta Course at St Andrews Beach provide protection from the elements. Picture generous fairways, spectacular greens, the roar of the ocean nearby. So too, the iconic sandy soil of the Mornington Cups region: St Andrews Beach – Gunnamatta is a stunning course that can be enjoyed by every playing level right across the calendar year.

In Doak’s words:

“We moved almost no earth on the fairways here – the contours of the land are just the way they’ve always been… What I really like about this site, apart from the contour and how the holes just fit the ground, is that the property is broken up into differently scaled sections. There are places where you’re looking over 3 or 4 holes from a high point, and there’s places where you’re down in a narrow valley and your only seeing the hole you’re on. There’s a lot of variety visually. As soon as I saw the property I knew it would be great for golf.”

"When I walked off 18 the first time I knew I had just played on one of the great courses ... it looks like it's been there for centuries"

James BrayshawMedia Personality and avid golfer

"You can't build a great golf course in Melbourne without building great bunkers. The Sandbelt courses have some of the best bunkering in the world, and lot of it is the soil you have here - It allows you to make the face a foot or two deep without it eroding away. You get some pretty dramatic looks to bunkers here that you can't get anywhere else."

Tom Doak

It’s one course that when I finish, I’m wanting to play more. I’m already looking forward to my return visit. To put it simply, it is a stunning golf course that caters for all levels, but when the wind blows, you know it’s game on. It’s no surprise to those that have played St Andrews that the course is so highly rated by all judges – a must-play course in Victoria, let alone Australia.”

David SchwarzRetired AFL footballer, media personality and avid golfer

"St Andrews Beach offers the most affordable, accessible, public, world class golf in Australia. The conditioning suits the challenging links perfectly, and the imagination required around the greens is as equal to any other course in Australia"

Richard MacafeeGolf Australia Magazine Top 100 Judge