Top 100 Golf Courses revises its 2014 Alpine rankings
Austria and Switzerland are the latest European countries to receive a Top 100 ranking review
19 January 2014
Top 100 Golf Courses has been ranking courses in the Alpine countries of Austria and Switzerland since 2008. Although best known in a sporting context for their world-class ski resorts, these two small, mountainous nations are home to a surprising number of engaging golf layouts.
In Austria, Fontana has been ranked as the national No.1 since our classifications for that country began. A former Austrian Open venue, this wonderful course also occupies a place in our Continental European listings, where you’ll currently find it at number 49.
Two years after Fontana opened, in 1998 to be precise, architect Jeff Howes expanded the original 9-hole layout at Adamstal to a full 18-hole course and this modern track has now matured into what we think is the second best golf facility in Austria, claiming a place in our European Top 100 at number 70.
Three upward movers in the Austrian chart also deserve a mention:
The Kyle Phillips-designed Eichenheim course in the state of Tirol is certainly a special place to play and, after registering a fall in our chart of two years ago, it now advances three places to number 5.
Dachstein-Tauren in the Styrian region is a fine 1987 Bernhard Langer creation that climbs four spots to enter the national Top 10 for the first time at number 9.
Donald Harradine’s Linz, located within the Tillysburg Estate in the Danube Valley, also rises a creditable four positions to number 10.
Across the border in Switzerland, the top two courses – both of which emanated from the drawing board of American-based architects – have been locked in the same positions for the four editions of the course rankings that we’ve published.
Domaine Imperial, which is one of a very small number of European creations attributed to Pete Dye (all of which have actually been constructed by Tim Liddy), remains at the top of the national chart and it’s also listed at a lofty number 30 in our Continental European rankings.
Tucked in just behind Mr Dye’s course, Robert Trent Jones Snr’s 18 holes at Geneva were first revealed to the golfing public in 1972 and the layout was chosen a couple of decades later to host the women’s world amateur team championships. This course also makes our European chart, squeezing in at number 100.
Several other courses make modest one position moves up the Swiss table:
Crans-sur-Sierre, following a Ballesteros upgrade, is now a firm favourite with European Tour pros.
Schonenberg, a 1960s Donald Harradine design, lies to the south east of Zurich.
Ascona, where Messrs Colt, Alison, Cotton and Harradine have all had a hand in shaping it down the years.
Zumikon, an old Zurich layout, which Thomas Himmel has upgraded in recent times.
Top 100 Golf Courses has never claimed to present “definitive” golf course rankings. Instead, we think we produce the “most informed” listings, taking into account data and opinion from as wide a range of sources as possible. If you think we’ve missed an Alpine Gem then do let us know. And please send us a course review should you have been lucky enough to play any of our featured courses in Austria or Switzerland.
Click the link to see our new Austrian Top 15 in detail
Click the link to our new Swiss Top 10 in detail
19 January 2014 Respond to this article