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Marine Drive

Vancouver, British Columbia
ArchitectBadgeA. V. Macan
Vancouver, British Columbia
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Course designer Arthur Vernon Macan – an Irish immigrant to Canada in 1912 at the age of thirty – fundamentally changed the nature of golf architecture in the Pacific Northwest region during a career spanning over half a century. As Macan himself said, “I have worked for every private and semi private course in the north west except for Portland Golf Club.”

Starting with Colwood (now Royal Colwood) in 1913, Macan was responsible for laying out many fine courses in Washington, Oregon, California, and British Columbia. During the 1920s, for instance, he created Manito, Inglewood, Fircrest, Glenacres and Broadmoor in Washington, Colwood National, Illahe Hills, Alderwood and Columbia-Edgwater in Oregon, Langara, Gorge Vale and Marine Drive in British Columbia.

The Marine Drive site had been developed as a dairy farm forty years before the golf club was formed in 1922 and Macan’s design skills were tested to the full as he squeezed eighteen holes into a rather constricted 105-acre parcel of land with original farm buildings used as a clubhouse and locker rooms.

Macan’s overall design philosophy was to create minimally bunkered fairways that led to steeply sloped, boldly contoured greens which would challenge all manner of approach and recovery shots. Marine Drive certainly follows that plan.

Measuring a modest 6,361 yards from the back markers, Marine Drive is not overly long but what it lacks in distance off the tee it makes up for in strategic design with tight, tree-lined fairways, greens that demonstrate not-so-subtle borrows and bunkers positioned in just the right places.

The biennial world amateur team championships for men and women – when golfers compete for the Eisenhower and Espirito Santo Trophies – were held here in 1992. The final stage of the men’s event was held at Capilano (with New Zealand winning) whilst the Spanish team claimed the ladies title at Marine Drive.

Course designer Arthur Vernon Macan – an Irish immigrant to Canada in 1912 at the age of thirty – fundamentally changed the nature of golf architecture in the Pacific Northwest region during a career spanning over half a century. As Macan himself said, “I have worked for every private and semi private course in the north west except for Portland Golf Club.”

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A. V. Macan

Arthur Vernon Macan was a prolific golf writer and he carefully constructed detailed clay models of the holes he designed. He remained active in both writing and design until his sudden death in 1964.

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