PLYMOUTH, Mich. (Jan. 22. 2020) – To thrive in the golf course design and construction business, Albanese & Lutzke principals Paul Albanese and Chris Lutzke have played to their collective strengths to evolve with an ever-changing industry. In an era when more golf courses are closing than opening, the duo remains busy and fortunate to be doing some of their most creative and impactful work around the world.
They both began their early careers in the 1990s as associates under Jerry Matthews, who designed more than 400 golf courses around the state of Michigan. In those years, Albanese and Lutzke would spend hours together on sites and in pubs discussing golf course architecture. Albanese gained his formal education from Cornell University via a B.S is Agricultural and Biological Engineering and then an Masters of Landscape Architecture from Harvard University while Lutzke earned two degrees from Michigan State, the first in Turf Science and the second in Landscape Architecture, all while working as a lead associate with legendary course architect Pete Dye for 20 years.
In 2004, Albanese and Lutzke, both currently members of the American Society of Golf Course Architects, recognized the value of bringing their architecture skills and knowledge under one roof and formed Albanese & Lutzke. Below are some highlights of their recent and current projects:
Albanese and Lutzke Open First Project in Vietnam
Yen Dung Golf Resort in Bac Giang, Vietnam is one of the leading golf resort destinations in Asia. The 36-hole facility has been divided into two-phases. The 18-hole Hillside course was opened in 2018 and Albanese and Lutzke are currently working on phase two with the Rock Valley course scheduled to open in 2019. The courses are built along a scenic, lush valley at the base of the magnificent Nam Bien Mountain range.
Albanese Continues Native American Projects with the Opening of Sage Run at Island Resort and Casino
Albanese has developed a niche, designing and building quality golf course projects with Native American-owned resorts. His first was the award-winning Sweetgrass Golf Club at Island Resort & Casino in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. That was followed by Tatanka Golf Club in Nebraska, which earned GOLF Magazine’s“Best New U.S. Resort Course” in 2015 and aGolf Digest selection as runner-up among the “Best New Public Courses” in 2016.
His next project, Sage Run, also at Island Resort & Casino, officially opened last summer. “It is a pretty prominent land form on this site,” Albanese said. “The holes go around, over and through the drumlin. Golfers will experience great holes through the trees, some in open areas and just a lot of variety in terms of landscape and feel.”
Natural long grasses edge the bunkers, and some of the short par 4s have blind shots to the greens. Albanese said Royal County Down in Northern Ireland, rated among the world’s top courses, served as inspiration.
Lutzke Applies Pete Dye Expertise with Kohler and other Dye Renovations
When it comes to performing renovation work designs by the late, great Pete Dye, no one knows the Dye landscapes and maintaining the design philosophy better Lutzke, who spent more than 30 years in the dirt with Pete, developing many of his award-winning projects.
Lutzke has come full circle with Dye and the Kohler Company, having been hired in the late 1980s to pick up sticks for Dye when he was building Blackwolf Run. Today, Lutzke is working on the Straits Course in preparation for the upcoming Ryder Cup in 2020 and is coordinating closely with the Kohler Company on new proposed projects that will add to its already world-class golf product.
In addition to the Kohler projects, Lutzke has applied his Dye experience with a renovation at Old Marsh Golf Club in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. Lutzke has renovated Old Marsh’s fairways, greens, tees, and added irrigation. In Indiana, Lutzke has worked on the Dye-designed Ackerman-Allen Course at Purdue University and is developing some new projects at French Lick Resort.
Renovations, Construction Projects Keep Albanese & Lutzke in the Dirt
In addition to their design projects, Albanese and Lutzke have created their own in-house golf course construction management firm, enabling them to provide a strong value proposition to clients on both renovations and new projects. This will allow the firm to pass along savings to facilities like Dayton Country Club, where they brought back many of Donald Ross’ design philosophies, and closer to home in Michigan, where they performed a hybrid restoration at Lochmoor Club in Gross Pointe Woods, restoring much of the design philosophies of Walter Travis.
For more information on Albanese & Lutzke Design, visit http://golf-designs.com.