World-class golf under the midnight sun

Leadership from Innovation Norway and SIVA contributes to the success of Lofoten Links

Photo: CH / Visitnorway.com Lofoten Links was named one of the world’s best new golf courses in the 2015 World Golf Awards.

Photo: CH / Visitnorway.com
Lofoten Links was named one of the world’s best new golf courses in the 2015 World Golf Awards.

Rasmus Falck
Oslo, Norway

Few places, if any, test a golfer against the elements as Lofoten Links does. Lofoten Links is a spectacular championship course that is beautifully situated on the island of Gimsøy in Lofoten, some 68 degrees north.

Here golf meets spectacular scenery. The course is located by the seaside with an unobstructed view to the north. Playing and walking the course is a grand experience where the ocean is a water hazard on several holes and sandy beaches act as natural bunkers. Lofoten Links is one of the few courses in the world to offer golf in the sun for 24 hours a day, including up to six hours in the midnight sun.

The 18-hole course opened July 4 last year, but Lofoten Links was originally opened in 1998 as a 6-hole challenge designed by Jeremy Turner. Today the par-71 course has four different tee options, ranging from 4,216 meters to championship length at 6,092 meters. The course has already seen rich acclaim, nominated as one of three in the prestigious “World’s Best New Golf Course” category in the 2015 World Golf Awards.

The founder is the current CEO Dana Garmany. The course is managed by Troon Golf, the world’s leader in upscale golf course management and marketing. They do not lease or own any of the facilities to which they provide services.

Innovation Norway is the main partner for the Lofoten Links company and makes significant contributions to the development of the golf course and marketing of the project. Through its support of companies in developing their competitive advantage and enhancing innovation, the organization is the Norwegian government’s most important instrument for innovation and development of Norwegian enterprises and industry.

The ownership of Lofoten Links includes the state company SIVA (the Industrial Development Corporation of Norway), which also contributes significantly with its expertise and networks to develop the project, as well as through its directorship in the company. SIVA helps both new, developing industries and companies in need of restructuring. They have a special responsibility for industries and geographic areas with poor access to private capital. They are co-owner of over 100 innovation companies, providing advice, locations, and networks. Most of these companies participate in their development program for incubation and business gardens.

The club is also proud to have Suzann Pettersen as global golf ambassador. Pettersen has ranked as high as second in the world ranking several times, most recently from August 2011 until February 2012. Before turning professional, she was five times Norwegian Amateur Champion. She is looking forward to the 2016 Olympic Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Lofoten Links provides the most captivating experience packages. The undisputed spectacle is the Golf and Northern Lights package. The three-night, four-day offer is valid from August to when the course closes in October, just when the Aurora Borealis is at its best. Watch one of nature’s great displays, with the mysterious, multi-colored show in the night sky and experience the local area of Lofoten, just two hours by plane from Oslo.

Rasmus Falck is a strong innovation and entrepreneurship advocate. The author of “What do the best do better” and “The board of directors as a resource in SME,” he received his masters degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He currently lives in Oslo, Norway.

This article originally appeared in the July 15, 2016, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.

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