There’s little doubt that the Ranfurlie Golf Club has gone through a number of phases in its evolution, yet none have been anywhere near as thrilling as the momentum gathered to this present day.
Following on from the sale of its Amstel Course three years ago, the Amstel Golf Club Board had the foresight and courage to invest back into its flagship Ranfurlie facility, with a particular focus on golf’s broader accessibility amongst one of the most burgeoning urban growth corridors in Victoria. It was this broad yet bold strategy that instigated a series of action plans, setting about a period of rigorous development across all facets of the business. Years down the track, what’s materialised has been nothing short of stunning.
As a first order of business, the Mike Clayton designed 18-hole course was the benefactor of significant capital investment, allowing for the layout now to be far more playable, more aesthetically appealing, and arguably in the best condition it’s ever been.
Perhaps where the Board has achieved its most noteworthy transformation though, is the brand new, state of the art, fully public Driving Range – now entering into its second year of operation. The mandate for the Driving Range was simple; to attract a less conventional golf crowd and to provide an environment where anyone can relax on any day of the week.
Project managed by Ian Denny and Scott Eduati of long-standing industry professionals Golf Services Management, the now flourishing Driving Range boasts 20 bays including a state of the art Golf Academy and two unique Premium Rooms. The Premium Rooms have been of particular significance, featuring auto tee up systems, unlimited golf balls and bar service which have all aided the entertainment of hundreds of groups, functions, corporates and events.
In order to complement this, the venue’s redeveloped Bar and Café facilities have driven a monumental shift in Ranfurlie’s Food and Beverage offering. It’s now common to see Summer afternoons whiled away by golfers, non-golfers, families and friends, all of whom can enjoy a cold drink and hit some balls or even just relax with the latest live sport on the big screens. In the eyes of Ranfurlie’s Management, there’s no doubt that this comfortable hospitality-oriented atmosphere has been the catalyst in attracting new clientele, some of whom have never stepped foot in a golf club before.
President of the newly named Ranfurlie Golf Club (formerly Amstel) Graeme Percy, lauded the open-mindedness of Ranfurlie’s progressive member base, who have endured a number of varied phases throughout the transition. “We’re lucky to have such a good base of loyal members as they’ve stuck with us through this and really embraced the changes. Now, they’re the true benefactors of this transformation and the proof is in the numbers – we’ve picked up 160 new members over the last 12 months alone.”
Going forward, the direction of the Ranfurlie’s leadership remains resolute and unwavering – to attract as many people as possible to the venue and to grow the great game of golf in the area. Now that it’s equipped with the facility to tackle this objective, it seems as though golf may indeed become a new passion for many in Melbourne’s South Eastern Suburbs.