Aspirational plans for the future of the two-course Riverside Golf Club are being put to members which would see a redeveloped 18 hole course and clubhouse facilities at Lochiel and its nearby Narrows course sold.

The club has been in discussions with the NZ Transport Agency for some time over the future of the Narrows course which has a highway designation through it.

Club president Craig Meinsmith says “Over the next few months the board is making presentations to the members regarding the future options, leading to a member vote in February. The board’s vision for the future is for all members to be based at a redeveloped and upgraded Lochiel course. This will include a remodelled clubhouse, new access road and improved car parking and an upgraded course and practice facilities”.

Brett Thomson of RBT Design and Phil Tataurangi have been chosen to develop and design a masterplan for the Lochiel course that would elevate the lay out significantly.

“We’re very excited to work with Brett and Phil to create a new golf experience at Lochiel,” says Mr Meinsmith.

“Brett and Phil’s outstanding resumes along with what they bring as a team with their different skills and experiences in the game, provided us with confidence that they’d design and deliver a very special course for all golfers.”

If the member vote is successful and after the new facility is completed, the club intends to be open the wider community offering a very comfortable and relaxing hospitality venue for golfers and the public.

The Lochiel upgrade will take 18 months to complete and members would all play at the Narrows course during the construction period.

With many sports clubs reviewing their operating models and looking at different opportunities to remain sustainable in the future, the Riverside Golf Club acknowledges this has the potential to create a legacy for their club.

Sport Waikato CEO, Matthew Cooper facilitated the amalgamation of the neighbouring clubs at the Narrows and Lochiel in 2013 to form what is now known as Riverside Golf Club. “As the Regional Sport Trust in the Waikato we are very supportive of this opportunity for Riverside”. “The plans to rejuvenate the Lochiel course and clubhouse facilities to a standard not previously available in the Waikato region whilst also ensuring their financial security long into the future is something we’re very excited about and one we’d advocate for as sound future proofing.”

The redevelopment provides an opportunity to boost visitor golf and golf tourism to the Waikato area and will be an important component of the new business.

Craig Meinsmith says “The club would work closely with a number of partners including NZ Golf, NZ Golf Tourism, Waikato Tourism, Hamilton City Council, Waikato District Council and the Waipa District Council to maximise all opportunities to bring additional visitors to the Waikato”.




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