Without being in any way unkind, until recently Harewood was a solid but unremarkable golf club course in the typical New Zealand parkland mould, right next to Christchurch International Airport. However, an extension to the runway saw the airport acquiring some of Harewood’s land (it was previously a 36-hole club). The club apparently decided to use the money to significantly upgrade its main course, known as the Woodlands, or Old course.
To oversee the upgrade to the Woodlands course, they hired Greg Turner & Scott Macpherson, who over the last few years completed a number of well-crafted redevelopments, predominantly in the South Island (Millbrook, Southland - Oreti Sands and Cromwell). They are also currently engaged in reconstructing the Royal Wellington golf course, and were responsible for the design at the newly opened Close House in the North East of England.
Turner and Macpherson re-routed the first five holes, built eighteen new teeing grounds, and removed over 500 trees from the property. But it is the eighteen new greens that have been the talking point. Far more undulating than their predecessors, they now present an abundance of strategic decisions that were sorely missing from the original layout. The new layout came into play in early 2012.Golfers in New Zealand are not historically as used to such considerable variation in their putting surfaces as in the States or the UK, and this has been a bold move on the part of the club. The course garnered some rave reviews from professionals when it hosted the John Jones Steel Harewood Open on the Charles Tour in 2012, and architectural connoisseurs have also weighed in with approval during its inaugural year.