Taking place at Verdura Resort from May 18-21, the inaugural tournament will feature a composite course combining the finest holes from the venue’s two award-winning 18-hole championship courses, the East Course and West Course.
Measuring 7,352 yards, the par-72 lay-out will comprise of nine holes each from the two Kyle Phillips-designed courses and will feature one of the most dramatic finishes in world tournament golf, with the final six holes running adjacent to the coast and set against the magnificent backdrop of the azure Mediterranean Sea.
Mike Stewart, the European Tour’s tournament director for The Rocco Forte Open – Verdura, said: “We are really excited by the selection of holes which form the composite course put together by Kyle Phillips. It will provide an outstanding test of golf in a truly spectacular setting.
“Sir Rocco Forte was also involved in the final routing as he was keen to see the tournament finish on the spectacular 18th hole of the East Course.
“The final hole will provide a suitable climax to a superb course. The tee shot is played against a backdrop of the cliffs with the coastline of Sicily lying to the right with the waves from the Mediterranean Sea breaking on the shoreline below. During the 2012 Sicilian Open, this proved to be the hardest hole on the course.”
A new addition to the European Tour calendar, the tournament will take place five years after Verdura Resort hosted the 2012 Sicilian Open, which was won by Denmark’s Thorbjørn Olesen.
Olesen fought off fierce competition from European Ryder Cup star Chris Wood to claim his first victory on the European Tour, and Marco Truffelli, General Manager at Verdura Resort, believes the course will provide the perfect platform for a thrilling finale to this year’s event.
Truffelli said: “Everyone at the resort is thrilled with the course that has been agreed and both the players and spectators are in for a real treat.
“The course is shaping up very nicely and I’m sure will help to inspire some fantastic golf. May is an ideal time to play golf in Sicily and we’re looking forward to showcasing the many delights that the island has to offer to the golfing world.”
Nestling adjacent to the Mediterranean in 230 hectares of stunning landscape, Verdura Resort, a Rocco Forte hotel and European Tour Destination, is ideal for a golf break and features two outstanding 18-hole championship courses – the East Course and West Course – as well as a par-three nine hole course, all designed by Kyle Phillips.
Complementing Verdura Resort’s outstanding golf courses are extensive golf practice facilities including a double-ended driving range and outstanding academy, which will be further enhanced in the new year with the installation of the latest Trackman launch monitor, 3-D motion force plates and SAM PuttLab technology.
In addition, guests can enjoy numerous other sports and leisure amenities including six tennis courts, an array of different watersports, a 170sqm fully-equipped gym and an award-winning 4,000sqm spa complex.
Verdura Resort has enjoyed an outstanding last 12 months with the resort winning a number of top international accolades including, most recently, being named as Italy’s number one golf venue in an industry list of continental Europe’s top 100 golf resorts.
Situated on Sicily’s southern coast between Agrigento and the fishing city of Sciacca, an 80-minute drive from Trapani and Palermo airports, Verdura Resort features 203 rooms and suites – all with a sea view.
Away from the fairways, the resort features an array of other luxury sports and lifestyle facilities while guests also have the opportunity to sample a taste of the gastronomy, wine, history and culture that has made Sicily famous across the world.
For more information on Verdura Resort, visit www.roccofortehotels.com