Situated less than ten miles south of Lake Como in the beautiful woodland countryside of Lombardy, the Rosso course at Golf Club Monticello was originally laid out by Jim Fazio and Baldovino Dassù in the early 1970s, with Canadian architect Graham Cooke extensively renovating the layout in more recent times.
The Rosso course covers a distance of 6,410 metres and plays to a par of 72 whilst its smaller sibling, the Blu, extends to 5,900 metres and also attracts a par rating of 72. It really goes without saying that golfers visiting Monticello should set aside a full day to experience all thirty-six holes on this wonderful property.
The club hosted the Italian Open seven times between 1975 (the year after the Rosso course first opened for play) and 1992. A trio of Major winners won the Italian Open here – American Billy Casper (1975), Australian Greg Norman (1988) and Scotsman Sandy Lyle (1992).
Consulting architect Graham Cooke kindly provided us with the following exclusive comments:
I enjoyed working for Golf Club Monticello. They have a great deal of history and have held many prestigious tournaments. A lot of the world’s best golfers have visited these fine golf courses in the past.
I provided a master plan for both courses and there are still projects to complete. However, for the "Percorso Rossa" I did most of the greens (total change or major modifications) and had a good shaper from Great Britain who lives in Italy.
On the 9th and 18th holes, I made one large double green with a fronting pond, which looks spectacular from the clubhouse. I also designed bunker modifications, mound complexes, added tees and re-contoured the fairway lines.
The courses did not need rerouting. My design works maintained the attractive older character of these fine courses, which are fun to play and are fairly open with lots of mature and specimen trees that accent the property.In the near future, there are plans to redo the range and practice greens and this work will further enhance the club’s reputation as one of the very best in Italy.