Long before New Zealand could boast of Tom Doak’s Tara Iti and Cape Kidnappers, or David Harman’s Kauri Cliffs or Jack Nicklaus’s Kinloch, there was Titirangi Golf Club in Auckland, a course first opened in 1920 and totally remodeled seven years later by Dr. Alister MacKenzie, his only work in that country. For decades it was considered the finest in that nation and today it’s still in the top five. One writer describes it as part tropical and part Pinehurst, with towering Eucalyptus trees thrown in. Another says that its four par 3s, facing four different directions, are among the toughest MacKenzie ever devised.
Titirangi will be the site of this fall’s Alister MacKenzie Society annual meeting, and if you win the 2020 Lido Design Competition, you’ll receive an invitation to attend the meeting and play Titirangi, along with $2,000 to defray your travel expenses, all of that on top of the $3,000 prize awarded to the winning entry.
UPDATE: The 2020 Lido Competition has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Lido is the annual golf design contest conducted by Golf World and the MacKenzie Society. It’s now in its 22nd year, and past winners include three contestants who’ve gone on to practice golf architecture full-time—Thad Layton Riley Johns and Clyde Johnson (the architect currently involved in restoring Titirangi)—as well as true amateur armchair architects like two-time winner Bo Links and three-time winner Cameron Hurdus, the defending champion.
As usual, the rules are simple. Design an original par-3 hole that you feel reflects the design principles of Dr. MacKenzie. It must be a hand drawing not larger than 11″ by 17″ and can be accompanied by a single page of explanation. Our judge this year will be golf architect Gil Hanse.
UPDATE: The 2020 Lido Competition has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic