American architect Dan Blankenship is one of the most prolific contemporary designers in Brazil with an average completion rate of around one project a year since he finished the Buzios course in the mid 1990s. Prior to his move to Brazil, Blankenship had worked for Pete Dye in Japan, Taiwan and Thailand so he arrived in South America having served an interesting and varied design apprenticeship with one of the best in the business.
The Alphaville Graciosa Club layout is yet another from a burgeoning Blankenship portfolio and its 18 holes are set within a residential estate that lies just outside the Paraná state capital of Curitiba. Configured as six par threes, six par fours and six par fives, the course made its debut in 2001.
On the front nine, the downhill, short par four 7th is a fine hole, played to a well-guarded green. On the inward half, the 188-yard 17th plays to an elevated green that seldom yields a birdie. Overall, the course length is a modest 6,569 yards from the back markers but with two of the par fives (at holes 6 and 18) measuring over 600 yards, golfers would be mistaken if they think playing a round here equates to a gentle walk in the park.
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