(SCOTTSDALE) As part of a major addition for its new Camelback Ballroom, Starwood’s flagship Phoenician Resort in Scottsdale, Arizona has completed work on a major upgrade to its golf courses. The 27-hole luxury resort – with its Oasis, Desert and Canyon Nines – is now home to Arizona’s only “Sand Island” green.Golf course architect Forrest Richardson oversaw development of the work in conjunction with Troon Golf, long-time operating manager of the resort’s award winning golf facility.

“It’s home coming for me,” notes Richardson. “Many years ago, during high school, I played golf here when the property was home to the old Jokake Inn, and the course was known as The Valley Club.” Richardson’s mentor, the late Arthur Jack Snyder, created the first edition of The Phoenician Golf Club in the 1980s, eventually paving the way for the 27-hole modern classic that now darts around the base of Camelback Mountain.

The design transforms the resort’s 9th Hole of the Oasis Nine into a risk-reward par-4 of just over 300 yards. “The tee shot is a matter of options,” according to Richardson. “The golfer will be able to play conservatively, or go for it – and the final hurdle will be the exciting approach to a narrow green rising up from a ‘sea’ of sand.”

Construction of the new golf hole was completed by golf builder, Landscapes Unlimited. Landscapes is among the world’s largest and most celebrated golf course construction firms with projects throughout the U.S. and internationally. The company’s resume includes numerous U.S. Open and PGA tournament courses. During the past year upgrades to the Phoenician Golf Club have included turf and irrigation renovations, as well as refurbishment of the water features that define the golf experience throughout the three distinct nines.

The new Camelback Ballroom will join the Phoenician’s existing 22,000 square foot Grand Ballroom, offering 15,000 square feet of interior meeting event space, as well as beautiful exterior settings. The new meeting space is destined to become the resort’s architectural showpiece, featuring spectacular views of Camelback Mountain, the new golf hole and territorial views of Scottsdale.