Jack Nicklaus has confirmed that he is designing his first-ever golf course in Saudi Arabia - and going by early artistic impressions, it promises to be spectacular.
The 'Golden Bear' and his company Nicklaus Design are creating the championship course for a private golf and country club, set within an exclusive residential community in the heart of Qiddiya - Saudi Arabia’s capital of entertainment, sport and the arts.
The course will be framed by the Tuwaiq mountain range, with ground expected to be broken later this year.
“I am excited by this project and my first golf course design in the Middle East,” said Nicklaus, the 18-time major champion.
“To be selected as one of the first international designers to work in the 'Kingdom' is a great honour. I’ve already spent time looking at the topography of the land, images of the backdrop and terrain, and discussing with our design team a strategy for the course.”
The course will fully integrate the natural environment and the Qiddiya landscape, bringing together green spaces and mountainous terrain to create both a beautiful and challenging golf course.
Construction began on the Qiddiya project in 2019 and the golf development will include a high-end resort hotel and spa, as well as exclusive residences that, once complete, will position the development as both the premier golf and country club and number one course in the country.
“By being involved in this project, we hope to promote the development and enjoyment of the game in the Kingdom,” Nicklaus added. “We not only want to entice Saudi residents to take up the great game of golf but we also hope this presents employment opportunities for citizens of the Kingdom that are within or related to the golf industry. This mirrors the vision of Qiddiya.”
There are also plans for a second course at Qiddiya, which, together with Nicklaus' track, will provide top-notch facilities for residents and day visitors, from elite players to those just starting to play.