1. Marina Bay Golf Course, Singapore
Designed by Phil Jacobs, a South African golf course designer who fashioned courses such as The Links at Fancourt in South Africa, Marina Bay Golf Course offers a stunning backdrop of the Singapore cityscape.
An 18-hole, links-style course with perfectly manicured greens and fairways, the facility won the accolade for Best Public Golf Course in the Asia-Pacific at last year’s Asian Golf Awards. It features a four-tier driving range and is among the few in the country that offer night golfing.
2. Ba Na Hills Golf Club, Vietnam
Since this golf course in Vietnam’s famous Ba Na Hills opened in March 2016, it has garnered much praise for its breathtaking scenery and professional caddies. The first golf course designed by the sport’s former world No. 1 Luke Donald, it features 18 tour-quality holes nestled amid the serenity of mountains and forests.
Located about 30 minutes from Da Nang city, the course recently unveiled a sophisticated lighting system that allows golfers to enjoy the game at night.
3. The Els Club Teluk Datai, Malaysia
Just like its designer, golfing legend Ernie Els, this course on Malaysia’s Langkawi island has raked in numerous awards over the years, including the World’s Best New Golf Course in 2014 and Asia’s Best Golf Course award in 2015.
A spectacular golfing haven situated within virgin rainforests, the 18-hole, Par 72 course boasts picturesque views of the surrounding mountains and the Andaman Sea.
4. Nirwana Bali Golf Club, Indonesia
Consistently ranked among the top golfing spots in the world, this Greg Norman-designed course has been flooring golfers with its beauty since its inception.
Impeccably integrated with its natural surroundings, the course has five holes that face the Indian Ocean and another eight that are nestled among Bali’s terraced rice paddies. The highlight of the course is the Par 3, 7th hole that overlooks the Tanah Lot temple.
The course is part of the Pan Pacific Nirwana Bali Resort, which offers a variety of top-notch accommodation options and luxurious spa treatments perfect for post-golf pampering.
5. South Cape, South Korea
Developed by South Korean tycoon Jae Bong Chung, this 400-billion-won (US$360.6 million) luxury resort in Namhae comes with a golf course where all 18 holes are backed by spectacular ocean views.
Notable spots on the course, which was designed by famous golf architect Kyle Phillips, are the Par 3 holes that extend out into the sea, reminiscent of those seen on the famous Pebble Beach in California.
South Cape also comes with a swanky boutique hotel featuring 130 villas, cutting-edge architecture and interiors, as well as a luxurious spa facility.
6. Black Mountain Hua Hin, Thailand
This award-winning course in Thailand’s seaside resort of Hua Hin offers golfers a true championship experience with its combination of wide fairways and tricky gradients.
In an affirmation of its quality, the course has, since its inception in 2007, hosted three Asian Tour competitions, and swept the top gongs in multiple categories at the Asian Golf Awards last year.
Besides golfing activities, the resort also offers a host of dining establishments, idyllic pool villas and even a water park that’s guaranteed to be a hit with children.
7. Mission Hills Shenzhen, China
If variety is the priority, there are only a few places in Asia that can rival this sprawling 20 sq km golf complex in the Chinese city. The 12 18-hole courses at Mission Hills Shenzhen were designed by renowned golfers such as Vijay Singh, Nick Faldo and the legendary Jack Nicklaus.
For those who relish a good challenge, attempt the unconventional Pete Dye course, which requires golfers to exercise much creativity in shot-making.
– TEXT BY ALYWIN CHEW
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This article was originally published by Singapore Press Holdings.