Jim Mansfield, owner of the Citywest Group, is said to have raised the money to purchase the land on which the Citywest course is laid out when he auctioned heavy machinery used to rebuild the Falklands after the Argentinean invasion in 1982. The property now contains the largest hotel in Ireland – 4-star with over 1,300 rooms – and a 4,000 capacity conference centre, complete with an additional 19 meeting rooms, leisure centre and spa.
The Citywest Hotel, Conference, Leisure and Golf Resort was estimated to have a total value in 2006 of over £240m. The group also owns the Palmerston House course and the Weston executive airport – all located within a short distance of each other in south County Dublin. And with Citywest hosting the 2006 Ryder Cup gala dinner, it is easy to see why it is considered one of the big hitters in modern Irish golf.
The golf course was developed in the early 1990s, based on a design by the prolific Irish golfer turned architect, Christy O’Connor Jnr. It's not a long course, measuring only a little more than 6,000 yards, but it's renowned for its strategic value in a beautiful parkland setting. Manicuring begins at every tee box then continues along lush, tree-lined fairways to greens that are a pleasure to putt on – if you like your golf to be played in well-tended surroundings then this is the place for you.
Two holes on the Championship course are considered to be the best of the bunch. The 182-yard par three 8th requires full focus on the tee to avoid the hazards that await. Down the right lies water and out of bounds with strategically placed greenside bunkers ready to capture any wayward tee shot. The 437-yard par four 18th is a great closing hole. The tee shot must be played through a narrow gap created by mature trees on either side of the fairway, avoiding the first of two lakes that runs down the left. The second shot to the green is also pressured by water that runs right up to the front edge of the green so a closing par here is a great score.