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A new golf course is expected to break ground in Saint Lucia within a matter of weeks, as one of the most recognised names in course development sets sights on the Helen of the West.
Cabot Links, Nova Scotia’s world-renowned golf resort, is expanding to the Caribbean. It’s creating Cabot Saint Lucia on the northern tip of the island. The resort is to have at least one golf course, Cabot Point, which is expected to open in 2021.
Canadian entrepreneur Ben Cowan-Dewar created the original Cabot Links on an abandoned coal mine in remote Inverness, overlooking the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Opened in 2011, it is one of Canada’s top-ranked courses, sits in the world’s top 50 of Golf Digest’s World 100 ranking, and is the cornerstone of a still-growing luxury resort that has turned Cape Breton into the country’s hottest golf destination and a global attraction.
Cowan-Dewar feels the same way about Point Hardy in Saint Lucia, a 375-acre site he first visited three years ago.
“It’s just a site that seemed like it had all of the things you’d hope for to build spectacular golf that would stand the test of time. It spoke to me immediately.
“Saint Lucia is such a physically beautiful island, relative to some of the flatter islands [in the Caribbean]. It’s renowned for its two Pitons, the two mountains that erupt out of the ocean. It’s got this really tropical allure, really dramatic coastline. When we walked Bill and Ben’s routing, it just seemed like it was one of those places where the coast did everything you hoped it would do for golf.”
The property sits on 375 acres, and Cowan-Dewar’s company announced on Friday morning that it would be starting work this summer. Cowan-Dewar is on island to meet with Prime Minister Allen Chastanet, among other dignitaries.
Cabot Saint Lucia will feature an 18-hole golf course called Cabot Point. Resort amenities are expected to include a clubhouse, a 50-room boutique hotel, three restaurants, retail shops, a spa, and upscale homes ranging from US$760,000 to US$10-million.
The golf course will be designed by World Golf Hall of Fame member Ben Crenshaw and his design partner Bill Coore, whose U.S.A. firm has drafted some of the world’s top modern courses. Set to open in 2021, Cabot Point will be their first Caribbean track.
George Punoose, a 20-year veteran in developing and managing luxury properties, including golf resorts, is another principal of Cabot Saint Lucia. He lives in Austin, Texas. Cabot’s corporate operations will continue to be based in Nova Scotia.
Mount Hardy has long been associated with golfing. Golf legend Jack Nicklaus once designed a course for the same property but it never materialised because of the 2008 global financial collapse. The imminent Cabot Saint Lucia would become Saint Lucia’s third golf course, joining the 9-hole Sandals Regency La Toc Golf Club, which features 3,300 yards of narrow fairways and rolling hills, and the 18-hole Sandals Saint Lucia Golf & Country Club at Cap Estate, which features 6,744 yards of sprawling green slopes.