Work has started on what is proposed to be the biggest and most modern golf course in Greece, the Crete Golf Club. The 18-hole course of 6,400 yards (720 stremma), just 20 kilometers from Heraklion’s international airport, will be built on Par 72 Championship standard. The unit will boast two driving ranges and a state-of-the-art Golf Academy, complete with practice putting greens and a ‘short game’ practice area.
Michael Vranas, chairman of the board for Crete Golf, said four sets of tee positions on each hole should make it a challenging course for golfers of all levels. “We anticipate that our course will lead to the construction of another eight golf courses on the island,” he said.
He added that the Crete Golf course, which received a 40% government subsidy on construction costs, should help increase the island’s tourism period and should entice more high-paying tourists to the area.
The project is being built in Hersonnisos by Greek contractors and is being developed by a group of 36 local investors -most of which are hotel owners in the area- and the City of Hersonnisos.
British golf group, PGA Golf Management, has designed the course. Bob Hunt, head of the group’s golf design section, said during groundbreaking ceremonies that: “This is an important site where we have followed our design philosophy of environmental friendliness.
“When completed it will be a positive addition to the landscape of Crete. It is certainly one of the most important events in Greek tourism for many years. It has taken a great deal of hard work by the developers to be able to start work and we aim to be ready for play in February 2003.”