Hailing from Adelaide, South Australia, Adam Scott turned professional in the year 2000 and quickly set about making a name for himself on the tour. He has won 27 professional tournaments globally and was ranked as World Number 1 golfer for three months in 2014. His first major championship – the 2013 Masters, was the first time an Australian had won the competition in its 77 year history.
He is also a genuinely nice guy, a typical Aussie, laid back and funny but ultra competitive when it comes to ‘game time’ One of the most popular players on the PGA Tour and with the golf spectators, Scott rebounded from one of the biggest ever sporting collapses when giving up his lead at the 2012 Open Championship to Ernie Els, to claim a major just a year later, a phenomenal achievement. We take time out with him here to discuss all things golf and more.
Tell us about your family and growing up in Australia.
I was born in Adelaide and moved to Queensland when I was 7. That's where I fell in love with the beach. It's the best move my parents ever made.
Your dad was in the golf business. What did he do?
Dad manufactured wooden drivers, fairway woods and putters under the name Mascot Golf. He put corporate logos on the faces of the clubs. Today he designs courses.
Any courses we've heard of?
He's done some work in Asia, and we've got a project south of Sydney called Crooked River, so hopefully that will be a masterpiece in Australia. It's something we can enjoy together. Golf's been his life, and design has been his life for the last 15 years, so it's nice that we can share that.
Is he a good golfer?
Dad was an Australian PGA member but never played professionally. He had a pretty bad motorcycle accident when he was 19 and messed up his knee. Says he never played very well after that.
How about your mom?
Mom is still a pretty good player. She was a club champion in her day and is back in single digits. She still likes to tell me, "It's all about the putting, Adam."
Do you remember the first time you beat your dad on the golf course?
I remember beating Dad because that was quite an accomplishment. He was a pro golfer, and I was 13. I was getting good about then and broke 70 for the first time. I know other members of the club who I beat weren't too happy with me. Dad took it pretty well, actually. It wouldn't be great to have a 13-year-old kid beat you, but I guess if it's your son it softens the blow.
Where do you live now?
I have a home on Australia's Gold Coast and another in Switzerland that I've owned for six years. Right next to Sergio [Garcia] in Crans sur Sierre.
Describe a fun day/night for you and Sergio in Switzerland.
Oddly enough we haven't had one yet. We haven't been there at the same time yet. There's a little casino up there in the village. There are a few nice places to eat and a few nice little bars, so there's a little bit of action at the right time of year.
I know you love to surf. Do you ski at all in Switzerland?
My knee's so fragile. I think I'm done with skiing.
But you still surf?
Absolutely. Falling in the water doesn't hurt as much, and I've gotten to a good level where I'm never putting myself at too much risk. I don't chase big waves, either.
What do you love about surfing?
The connection with the water. I always come out of the water refreshed, energised and at peace.
Do you travel to surf?
The only straight-up surfing trip I've taken is to the Maldives.
What's your surfing handicap?
I'm probably a 10.
Ever had an encounter with a shark?
I've seen sharks. Fortunately they didn't come near me.
If you could live anywhere in the U.S., where would it be?
Encinitas, Calif. It's such a relaxed town. You can walk to the beach, and the surf and weather are always good.
You lived in London for a while. Did you take advantage of the arts?
I lived there for seven years and went to a lot of museums and exhibitions.
Any particular areas you're interested in?
I've taken an interest in architecture. I like Norman Foster, and Zaha Hadid does some very interesting modern work. I'm fairly contemporary and minimalist in taste.
How do you act on your passion for architecture?
I have a couple of websites I go to that keep you up to date on interesting stuff that's happening. There's a good one called The Cool Hunter (thecoolhunter.net). It's not only architecture. It's everything new that's coming out that's based around design.
What's the coolest thing you've stumbled upon recently?
Puma has a chalk Ping-Pong table that's a bit of a crazy design. I've always thought it could be a really good thing for the design business if I developed a niche for good clubhouse architecture.
Will you design the clubhouse at Crooked River?
No. [Laughs.] I like architecture, but I really don't have a clue what goes into it.
One course every day for the rest of your life?
Cypress Point. It's a golfing architectural masterpiece, really clever. I wish I could've played it when the sand dunes were exposed with less grass. It's brilliant, though, and not too long.
What kind of music do you listen to?
I'm a rock guy. I like a lot of older stuff like Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath. In high school we listened to a lot of Guns N' Roses, Metallica, Smashing Pumpkins and Nirvana.
Seen any good shows lately?
I saw Ben Harper in Montreal when I was there for the Presidents Cup a few years ago. Really cool. Saw Robbie Williams in Ireland. Whether or not you like his music, he's a great entertainer.
What kind of car do you drive?
I've actually eliminated a lot of cars recently. I have a Land Rover Discovery, the new one, hat I drive to the beach. And I have the 1973 Porsche that I bought in mint condition a couple of years ago. There are only a few classic things that never change, and the shape of the Carrera is one of them.
People have described you as shy. Is that a fair assessment?
I think I'm reserved. I wouldn't call myself shy. I don't lay all my cards on the table.
You got a taste of Hollywood fame when you were spotted with Kate Hudson on Maui.
That was uncomfortable. We were, and are, just friends. Met through a mutual acquaintance.
In 2010 the paparazzi were snapping pictures of you with tennis star Ana Ivanovic.
It still takes me by surprise, honestly. I'm fairly low-key. But it doesn't happen too often, which I'm grateful for.
Adam Scott's movie-star looks are almost a cliché now, but have you ever had an offer to be in a film?
Disappointed by that?
Not at all. I really don't think my acting skills are up to even a cameo role. My acting skills aren't even up to a silent role! [Laughs.]
TEXT: STEVEN SHEPHERD // PHOTOGRAPHY: NICOLAS GUERIN