Author Archives: Thailand Golf Holiday

Judging Distances In Thailand

My friend’s scoring on the golf courses in Thailand has been improving as of late, however his big concern nowadays is distance. To be honest he just doesn’t get it, he can spend days at the driving range in Bangkok, hitting buckets (actually trays) of balls and yet when he hits the golf course he loses it, coming up short or long of every green. Here is what I figured out. Previously he was using the yardage signs at the driving range to gauge how far he can hit the ball with each of his clubs....

Useful Thailand Golf Expressions

Do you want to be admired and respected by golf club staff, caddies and other local Thais on your Thailand golf vacation? Here’s a tip: learn a few words of Thai golf vocabulary! Aside from hello and goodbye (sawadee), are you well? (sabai dee mai), and what is your name? (khun chue arai), good luck (chok dee) is a nice thing to say when you are leaving someone, or when having a drink and raising your glass to someone (like “Cheers!”). Remember, though, to be polite by ending with krap if you a...

Wedge Sets When Golfing In Thailand

Wedges are called the scoring clubs in Thailand for a reason. With a shorter shaft, more loft and shorter shot distances, golfers should be able to get the ball closer to the hole. In addition, wedges have more versatility than all other clubs as they can be used from tight lies, sand bunkers, and fluffy lies as well as for a variety of shots from full length pitch shots, to mid length and short chip shots, bump and run, soft sand bunker shots and hard sand shots. In order to maximize ones scori...

Does Bangkok Really Have Royal Gems?

Yes! Bangkok’s Royal Gems Golf and Sports Club was designed by Gary Roger Baird based in Nashville, Tennessee, USA, a former protégé of Robert Trent Jones and offers a nice variety of holes surrounded by mature trees. The course is generally closed for non-member play, but some agents like my golf travel company can secure a limited number of tee times for visiting golfers in Bangkok. Last week I found the golf course in  excellent condition. Fairways were of good quality grass and c...

Walking vs. Riding While Golfing in Thailand

One of the great things about golfing in Thailand is that at most courses, you have a choice, unlike in other golf destinations. Many golf courses in Thailand are relatively flat, especially the Bangkok golf courses, but it is quite hot here so riding will require less energy in the heat and humidity. A golf cart or buggy will also provide a measure of shade protection from the intense sun and of course a breeze while moving. Speed of play may be improved here as one can get to their ball faster...

A Tale Of 2 Bangkok Thailand Airports

If it is a little while since your last Thailand golf tour, or if your on a golfing holiday in Thailand for the first time, you will need to be aware that Bangkok now has two airports, Suvarnabhumi (pronounced su-wan-na-poom), and Don Muang. All international airlines fly in and out of Suvarnabhumi, while domestic flights are operated at both airports. Domestic flights with 3 digit flight numbers and the airport code BKK operate at Suvarnabhumi, while those with 4 digit flight numbers and the a...

Long Game Equipment When Golfing In Thailand

I notice from the groups which my Thailand golf vacation company hosts, that these days there is an ever-increasing choice of long game equipment. Nearly everyone has a different approach to their long game set-up, with varying combinations of fairway woods, utility clubs and long irons. Even golf professionals use diverse equipment. Traditional long irons are now complemented by fairway metals in 13°, 15° and 18° options as well as utilities or hybrids (‘rescue woods’ or if you are golfing in ...

The Vintage Club Golf, Bangkok Thailand, January 2008

Here is a fresh review of one of the lesser known Bangkok golf courses. The Vintage Club was designed by Arthur Hills, a top designer from the state of Michigan, USA who has designed more than 180 courses worldwide and renovated or modified more than 120 others. Fairways are quite generous and provided a fair amount of roll on tee shots. They were just a bit dry, but not to the point of making any negative impact on play as they were still in fine condition as was the rest of the course. The ro...

Solo or Group Golf Travel in Thailand?

The great majority of guests of my Thailand golf vacation company travel in golfing groups, some large and some small. There are plenty, however, who choose to take their Thailand golfing holiday independently or as a couple. So what are the pro’s and con’s of the two approaches? When you are traveling in a group you have partners to play with, and you can have a lot of fun participating in a tournament or  matches over the course of your holiday. Depending on the size of the group often yo...

How I Improved Past Bogey Golf In Thailand?

During the last 6 months golfing in Thailand, I’ve been hitting the ball better due to a lot of practice and some great golf tips from my friends, but until recently I still found myself stuck in the 92-95 range. It seems like every time that I pitch from 5-20 yards off the green, say when playing at Thai Country Club, I end up leaving myself an 10 foot putt.  My short game (for example several 9 irons last month at Amata Springs) were fine, but I felt that if I could get the ball cl...

Siam Meets New York: Christmas Golf in Thailand

Where else can you find top golf resorts and ride an elephant in a Santa suit? How about Sukhumvit Road and Chiang Mai? A very special and merry Christmas from myself and the Thailand Golf Zone. Hoping 2008 brings you and your families health, wealth, happiness, and many birdies (of course). For those who have contributed to this Thailand golf blog, thank you. It is from your comments and feedback that has kept the Thailand Golf Zone going up to now up with 296 posts to date. More great articles...

Practice Or Luck: Good Golfing In Thailand

How would you feel about shooting a net 69 on your first round golfing in Thailand? Well to score well, you either have to be very lucky or you have to practice prior to and during your Thailand golf holiday.  Everything being equal, practice is the only thing that can give you an opportunity for a great score. With warm sunny weather in Thailand, some golfers might think anything beyond a 5 minute putting warm-up might be injurious, how incorrect. Can you imagine a professional golfer show...

3 More Last Minute Thailand Golf Presents

Here are 3 more ideas for presents for the Thai golfer who has everything. 1. The WOW Putter (US$59.95) claims to have “Everything you ever wanted in a putter” It boasts: a tape measure to accurately measure the distance from the ball to the hole; a compass to keep the ball on course and avoid getting lost in the woods; a bike horn to quiet others before you putt (can also be used to celebrate great putts), a plumb to check the lay of the land and to eliminate scuffed putts, and, a rabbit’...

Christmas Presents For Thailand Golfers

With the Festive Season approaching at breakneck speed, like me, you may be in a state of panic as to what presents to buy. Here are six ideas for your Thailand golfing loved one: 1. For his/her next golfing holiday in Thailand, a new travel golf bag will be well received. One of the best I have seen recently is the OGIO Mammoth (US$330.00). This sturdy golf travel bag stands upright and glides effortlessly in transit thanks to four sturdy, swiveling wheels. The OGIO Mammoth has a wide mouth ope...

In Thailand Golf Respect “The Elders” (Part 4 of 4)

Here is the final part of Respect “The Elders”: A British expatriate golfers favorite Thailand golf courses. Siam Country Club, Pattaya Set in the rolling hills behind Pattaya, this layout always gives me a lift. Being the first golf course in the area, of course the architect, I. Izumi, had the pick of prime locations and he did select well. The long driveway through the gentle hills past the reservoir and the sprawling mausoleum of the founding father builds the anticipation for a special day ...

In Thailand Golf Respect “The Elders” (Part 3 of 4)

Here is the third part of Respect “The Elders”: A British expatriate golfers favorite Thailand golf courses. Khao Cha-Ngok Golf & Country Club, Nakornnayok Having a home in Nakornnayok has provided the opportunity to play this golf course regularly. I was lucky. The course did not exist when we built the house. The only course in the area was the lovely Sarrika Golf Club which was closed and converted into a coffee plantation. I was devastated. Then came the cavalry to the rescue. Khao Cha-N...

In Thailand Golf Respect “The Elders” (Part 2 of 4)

Here is the second part of Respect “The Elders”: A British expatriate golfers’ favorite Thailand golf courses. Royal Hua Hin Golf ClubSo much has been written about this old beauty which retains the aura of an elegance of a bygone era in old Siam.. A Scottish railway engineer, A. E. Robins, obviously a keen golfer, laid the course in 1924 for the then King of Thailand, Rama VI, and his enthusiastic golfing partner Queen Rhamphaibarni. The basic layout, in the hills behind the old Hua Hin,...

In Thailand Golf Respect “The Elders” (Part 1 of 4)

In Thailand, younger people are brought up to respect their elders. This article, and the next few postings, present the views of a British golfer who arrived in Thailand in the mid- 70’s. He was already a single figure handicapper and understandably retains great affection and respect for the few golf courses which existed at that time. He explains which Thailand golf courses are his favorites, why he liked them then, and loves them still today. Unlike retired generals classic golf courses don’...

Dress For Success On The Thailand Golf Course

Do you want to be admired and respected by golf club staff, caddies and other local Thais on your Thailand golf vacation? Here’s a tip – wear the right color clothes on the right day! In Thailand the days of the week are named after the planets in the same order as some Western countries. In Thai, wan (pronounced wun) means day and it comes before the name of the planet. Each day is also associated with a color. Traditionally, people wear items of clothing according to the color of the day. A f...

How To Score Well Golfing In Thailand?

When golfing in Thailand it seems like everybody has different thoughts on how to begin a hole.  Many Thailand golfer holidaymakers put everything into their tee shot, practically ungluing themselves every time they tee off. Lady golfers in Bangkok worried about their slice, so they take a lot off of their tee shots and rely on their hybrids. For the “so-called” professional golfers visiting Phuket, it is a heavy concentration on mechanics.  However, no matter which option you chose w...

Loy Krathong Festival While Golfing In Thailand

The upcoming months are a great time to be golfing in Thailand – and if you are planning to be here this month, try to stay over the weekend of November 24th to take in, and indeed participate in, one of Thailand’s most beautiful and popular Festivals. The Festival is called Loy Krathong, and it takes place on the full moon in November. During the evening, many people will go down to their local klong (canal) or river or even the beach to float their krathongs. They believe this will bring them ...

Golf Villas In Thailand: A Dream Or A Drag

In an earlier posting about living in Thailand so that you can golf here year round, I referred briefly to the pro’s and con’s of buying golf course property. Nobody loves their golf more than me but, personally speaking, the last place that I would want to live is on a Thailand golf course – and that goes double for my wife. OK, you have easy access to golf whenever you want; particularly if a golf membership  is included in the golf course real estate. Some Thailand golf courses have a ...

Hua Hin’s Best Golf Course Part 2 Of 2

Here is the continuation post on the best Hua Hin golf course, Black Mountain. It covers Chiang Rai based PGA teaching professional Graham Sampson’s favorite 3 holes. Each of the eighteen holes is unique and interesting. Three of the holes I found most memorable were 4, 6 & 15. Hole # 4 is a beautiful downhill par 4 measuring 432 yards from the black tees and 396 from the blue. The elevation drop is dramatic, requiring a precise tee shot that feels slightly ‘blind’ the first time you ...

Hua Hin’s Best Golf Course Part 1 Of 2

Here is a review of Hua Hin’s newest and best golf club by Chiag Rai Thailand based PGA golf teaching professional Graham Sampson The Black Mountain Golf Club, a new 18 hole championship course in the seaside town of Hua Hin, Thailand that opened for play July, 2007. It’s only a ten-minute drive from downtown and a must-play for all golf enthusiasts. The course stretches out to 7345 yards from the championship-caliber black tees to 6502 from the blue with course ratings of 75 & 72 res...

Phuket’s Hottest Golf Course

Here is a great write up by Phuket golf expert and long time Thailand resident Howard Gross. If you are in Phuket playing golf, you will undoubtedly play the Loch Palm Golf Course. It is one of the top three courses on the island. And you cannot just play Loch Palm without playing the new sister course Red Mountain which had a very soft opening in May of 2007. No fanfare, hoopla or special promotion, the opening was announced simply with a sign as you drove to the old club house, of Loch Palm, ...

The Ronald Fream Thailand Golf Courses

The 3 Thailand golf courses designed by Ronald Fream are Panya Indra Golf Club in Bangkok, Windsor Park Golf Club (formerly Panya Park Golf Club) also in Bangkok, and Mountain Shadow Golf Club (formerly Natural Hill Golf Club) near Pattaya. The Panya Indra Golf Club was developed by Fream in 1991 comprises three separate 9-hole championship courses, each with an individual design. It is the only one of the 3 original Panya Group golf courses that still bears the Panya name. The golf course ha...

Ronald Fream In Thailand Golf

Today’s posting about the Thailand golf courses that have been designed by the world’s best golf course architects features another lesser known name, Ronald Fream. But it is also about the rags-to-riches-to-rags tale of one of Thailand’s most prolific entrepreneurs, “Mr Panya” and the partnership between himself and Fream. Ronald Fream, the founder of Golfplan, began his golf course architecture career in 1966 with Robert Trent Jones. The Golfplan team has provided golf course architectural se...

Schmidt-Curley In Thailand Golf

Here is a company that re-designs golf courses in Thailand as well as developing their own creations. Schmidt-Curley Design, Inc. was founded by partners Lee Schmidt and Brian Curley. Brian Curley resides in the USA, while Mr. Schmidt calls Thailand his second home. Schmidt-Curley is a full service, international golf course architecture and master planning firm with more than 100 golf courses in 24 countries, including the U.S., China, Vietnam, Mexico, Egypt, Sweden, Korea and, of course, Thail...

Siam Country Club, Pattaya: Site Of Honda LPGA Thailand 2007

The new Siam Country Club in Pattaya, a par-72 that will play at 6,469 yards, will be showcased during the Honda LPGA Thailand, October 25-28.This will be the first professional golf tournament held at the Siam Country Club, Pattaya after renovations were completed in 2007. Siam Country Club, Pattaya, one of the best golf courses in Thailand, has been opened for more than 35 years and is the oldest golf course in Pattaya. It is situated among breathtaking views on an 800 rai land pl only 15 min...

Greg Norman In Thailand Golf

Thailand’s golf courses have been designed by some of the world’s best golf course architects including Greg Norman. Norman won The Open Championship twice, in 1986 and 1993, and also won The Players Championship in 1994, averaging less than 69 strokes per round. However, Norman may be regarded as an underachiever because of by his myriad near-misses in The Masters, the U.S. Open, and the PGA Championship. Perhaps the most famous and embarrassing Norman meltdown of all occurred at The Masters i...