Chris Wilczynski, Ryangolf guiding work on new Southwest Florida course
The 12th hole at Esplanade at Azario Lakewood Ranch.
Photo courtesy of Chris Wilczynski

Chris Wilczynski, Ryangolf guiding work on new Southwest Florida course

Esplanade at Azario Lakewood Ranch scheduled to open in 2020.

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August 15, 2019

Chris Wilczynski, ASGCA, in conjunction with Ryangolf Corporation, has started construction of an 18-hole golf course at national home builder and developer Taylor Morrison’s Esplanade at Azario Lakewood Ranch community in Southwest Florida.   
 
Residents of Esplanade at Azario Lakewood Ranch will have access to the private course in addition to an array of planned resort amenities that include a wellness center, culinary center, resort-style pool, Bahama Bar, sports courts, state-of-the-art fitness center, fire pits and a full-time lifestyle manager located on site.
 
Wilczynski, who has worked with Ryangolf on six other projects, including two other Esplanade golf courses in Southwest Florida, said construction began in February and is expected to be completed in late first quarter/early second quarter of 2020.
 
“I have been making periodic visits to the property and everything is off to a great start,” Wilczynski said. “Ryangolf was selected after a bid process and is an extremely qualified contractor. It is good to be working with them again. We have a great team.”
 
Five of the Esplanade at Azario course holes will be played along and through mature trees.  “The treed holes, especially the par-3s, No. 12 and No. 17, will be particularly fun holes,” Wilczynski said. “The green at No. 12 is in a private enclave and No. 17 runs parallel to it, but in the opposite direction. Anytime you can build around mature trees the results are great golf holes.”
 
The topography from which the Azario course is being created is typical of most Florida golf courses, relatively flat. “The golf course will be created by man and machine,” Wilczynski said. “We are digging several large lakes and using the soil from the excavation to construct the golf course, lots pads and roads. It’s a dramatic transformation given the scope of the earthwork and the process to build a project like this”.  
 
“It takes a lot of creativity to develop a terrific golf course,” Wilczynski added. “We work really hard to design and construct 18 different holes and greens. We want each hole to be unique while being fun, maintainable and aesthetically beautiful. The detailed planning process and hands-on approach during construction allow us to create this.”  
 
The course will have six sets of tees and play from 3,600 to 6,900 yards. “One of our main goals is to create a course that will be enjoyed by players with a range of golf abilities from beginner to experts,” Wilczynski said.      
 
“We are excited to work with Chris again as he understands our vision and helps us develop a golf course that complements and enhances our Esplanade community,” said Cammie Longenecker, division president of Taylor Morrison Southwest Florida. “They also want to live and play within an inspiring location. Chris helps us deliver this goal.”