Lohmar-Wahlscheid (D): The world's longest golf conveyor lift at Schloss Auel Golf Club
At Schloss Auel Golf Club, demanding golfers can find just what they're looking for, including a highly varied, hilly terrain paired with a breathtaking view and perfectly manicured grounds boasting 27 holes.
In the search for a reliable partner for the lift project at Schloss Auel Golf Club, the Austrian company Sunkid stood out among all others. The company's record - as the inventor of modern passenger conveyor lifts with over 2300 successful installations to date in 45 countries - speaks for itself. Sunkid already knew from previous projects that the conveyor belt itself must be 750mm wide to offer optimum transport for golfers with cart bags. And at a length of 521 feet (159m), it was also clear that this installation would be the longest golf-course conveyor lift in the world.
In less than 30 minutes' drive from the bustle of Cologne or Bonn, golfers can reach the edge of the hill country and the idyllic castle, "Schloss Auel" in Lohmar-Wahlscheid. This baroque castle, originally built with a moat, dates back to at least 1391, and forms the center of a sprawling grounds where renowned guests have stayed in the past - including Napoleon, Czar Alexander, and Emperor Wilhelm II. Today, the name "Schloss Auel" is widely known as that of a well-run golf club which enjoys popularity among golfers from near and far. The modern, 27-hole golf course, together with a driving range and club house, is nestled perfectly into the ensemble of forested hills, meadows, and the historic castle walls.
The 900-plus members of the club enjoy both the unique panorama, and a thoroughly challenging 18 hole course (par 73/74). Due to the hilly landscape and surrounding forest and meadow terrain, each hole has its own unique character.
Holes 2 through 9 are situated on a level, with a marvelous view of the hill country nearby. However, the very first hole is played on a physically challenging uphill grade. In total, players have to ascend about 200 feet to reach the second green. However, thanks to the Sunkid conveyor lift, even players with no cart can now cover the ground in no time. The elevation gain between the first two holes is about the same as a 20-storey building. Werner Witte, manager of the course, says: "Up until now, the hill meant that it was very difficult, even for athletic players, to maintain a good rhythm on the course without a golf cart. The conveyor lift is the perfect solution for golfers who prefer not to use a golf cart." The conveyor lift provides reliable and fast transport for golfers up an average incline of 20%, and all with a quiet, efficient 15 kW drive motor.
The conveyor lift at Schloss Auel Golf Club is very popular among golfers at the club, and has now already served one season without any complications. Some visitors even come to the course now simply out of curiosity for the new technology. Most, however, just value the practical contribution the conveyor lift has made to the course. "Thanks to the Sunkid conveyor lift, we're seeing more players coming to the course who are interested in walking rather than using a cart. However, there hasn't been a drop in cart rentals either," says Witte.
The conveyor only starts moving once a passenger has passed the entrance area, thereby saving energy. Thanks to refined and tested technology from the Alpine skiing field, common dirt, rain, leaves, and snow don't impact the operation of the conveyor. For this reason, the conveyor lift can stay in operation throughout the whole year - just like the course. In addition, the lift is monitored by video from the central office, and can be controlled from the office as well.
Due to the intuitive design of the conveyor lift, it is popular with golfers in every age group. The conveyor was set by the golf club at a moderate speed to both facilitate a good speed of play overall, and also to increase the impact of the fantastic view. Now, with the new conveyor lift, nothing can get in the way of a great day of golfing.
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