Category Archives: Interesting Thailand Golf Snippits

Thailand Golf Updates – Coming This Year Lotus Valley Stay

One of the few Gary Player–designed golf courses in Asia, and the only one in Thailand, Lotus Valley Golf Resort has a unique look and feel as well as a progressive thinking management team and Board of Directors. They have plans to upgrade their championship golf facility with the addition of a modern, purpose-built hotel complex. Consistently featuring in the Asian Golf Awards as Best Value Golf Experience this pedigree course has even more ambition. Golfasian talks to General Manager Derek Sc...

Thailand Golf – Golfasian Regulars

Pacific Golf Club, Carindale Hi, my name is Bill Donovan. I have played golf seriously for 34 years. My current handicap is 10 and I am a member of Pacific Golf Club at Carindale in Brisbane. Pacific is an 18-hole championship golf course in a parkland setting, with water on 16 of the holes. It is a very challenging layout. This is my 6th trip to Thailand and my 3rd trip to Hua Hin. Our group, 6 males all from pacific Golf club, have been to Hua Hin 3 times, Pattaya twice and once to Chiang Mai....

Thailand Golf – Courses that might “Suit Your Eye”?

The picture at the head of this article is of Tiger Woods after one of his 8 victories at the Arnold Palmer Invitational played at Bay Hill. The phrase “This course really suits his eye” is mostly used by golf commentators on US television networks about professional golfers on the Tour. They are almost always referring to a player who is returning to a tournament venue as the defending champion. The premise is, this player has won here fairly recently and is therefore filled with positive memor...

Good Caddy, Not so Good…Some Answers Why

Thailand’s caddies are one of its unique selling points generally because they work with an easy smile and just like the rest of Thailand’s renowned service industry just want you to enjoy yourself. But we golfers are far more demanding than just requiring a smile, we want Steve Williams on the bag. Therefore, that can’t be where the story ends. If you have golfed here for many years you will have played with good, less good and somewhat mediocre caddies, generally described as “bag carriers”. T...

Fabulous Chiang Mai, a Great Golf Destination

Having moved to the area of Chiang Mai I am reminded how beautiful the place is, full of culture and fabulous to explore. Thailand’s most mountainous region (albeit “mini-mountains”) it supplies fabulous opportunities for great golf. Additionally, unlike Bangkok which tends to be hot all year round, Chiang Mai has a genuine “winter” period (end November until start April) when the temperatures can fall to the sublime mid twenties and prompt the actual wearing of a s...

What makes Nikanti Golf Club an unusual golf course?

It seems like the golf architect Pirapon Namatra (Ope) of Golf East listened quite a lot to Tina Turner’s famous song ‘Break every rule’ when he designed Nikanti Golf Club, Asia’s first 18 hole, par 72 golf course comprising three six-hole layouts each with two par-threes, two par-fours and two par-fives. Thailand’s 291st golf course was opened in May 2014. The Nikanti Golf Club is almost adjacent to Suwan Golf Club. When Pirapon Namatra (the designer of Banyan Club and part of the construction ...

What makes Asia’s 1st replica golf course unique?

The Gary Roger Baird-designed Royal Gems Golf City’s life and operations did not start smoothly (in the 1960s and early 1970s Baird worked as a senior architect with Robert Trent Jones). Right after the opening in 2011, it suffered significant flooding in December. However, they were able to reopen the golf club in 2012. Royal Gems Golf City is Asia’s first replica golf course and combines 9 of the best holes in the world (see list below) like TPC Sawgrass, St Andrews and Oakmont. The back 9 of ...

Golf Club membership in England versus Thailand

Last Sunday I turned up to play alone at Lam Lukka and was sensibly paired by the starter with 2 Thai gentlemen. After a few polite introductions we completed the first 3 holes and at the first drinks stop started a more involved conversation. This was about the differences between being a member of a club in Thailand versus England where I come from.  First of all I need to say that this is my experience and there are some generalisations, but in the main I believe the following are valid obser...

Is Thailand Golf Good for the Blood Pressure?

Two things have happened to me in the past several days, neither of them very good and both I regret. First I became frustrated that a Golfasian client wasn’t appreciating Thailand golf for what it is, an overall experience rather than the ultimate golf environment, like say Myrtle Beach in the States. Then stupidly I fell into a very similar trap albeit subtly different, even after 15+ years of playing here and almost 8 living in the country. The ingredients for the client’s frustration were no...

Don’t get carried away

It’s all relative, but we’ve all had that “banner” golf round, when everything clicks…when we’re “in the zone”. It may be scoring less than a hundred for the first time or breaking par, but all of us had to keep going right to the 18th to reach that milestone, keep the concentration, the rhythm and the focus. I was engrossed by Eddie Pepperell at the Open Championship on Sunday. One of England’s brightest new talents, he was having a fabulous day, remorselessly chasing down the leader’s score of...

My Kanchanaburi Adventure

By Ian Morgan –  Golfasian’s Hua Hin & Phuket Manager Having played golf all around Thailand over the last 11 years, there are very few areas I haven’t seen. So living in Hua Hin it’s amazing I have never taken the road north to look at Kanchanaburi and the surrounding area. The main attraction was to see Grand Prix Golf Club which so many of my friends have talked about; surely it wouldn’t be as good as they said? On this occasion my journey started in Bangkok and I decide...

The Opening Tee Shot – Some trickier than others

I can’t remember when I lost my first tee traumas. I remember having them; feeling super conscious about people watching and living in fear of a top, shank, massive slice (probably) or a huge pull. But they’ve gone, not because I’m a superb golfer but rather I have definitely gained in confidence since those days and as a single figure player I’m not supposed to have traumas…nerves maybe but not traumas. Importantly, I have also conditioned myself to be more positive in my approach to any shot, ...

Is Innovation in Thailand Golf Tourism Possible?

Every commercial organisation is looking for an edge, something different, unique; golf tourism is no different. The stock formula has worked for decades because the market has very identifiable requirements with a few adjustments around the fringes, namely the location, style and class of the offering which therefore dictates the price. Historically, the USA and likes of Spain/Portugal have dominated as preferred golf holiday destinations with the UK close behind due to its association with the...

10 Reasons Why You Should Never Choose Thailand as Your Next Golf

Thailand is a truly bad choice for your next golf holiday destination. Here’s why. Note: Please don’t tell your friends. 1) The golf courses in the north of the country are plain ugly:Alpine Golf Resort in Chiang Mai 2) …and in the center:Thai Country Club in Bangkok 3) …as well as in the south:Mission Hills Phuket 4) The Thai caddies don’t know how to smile:5) It’s almost impossible to find a massage or spa:6) Nightlife is non-existent:7) Nor ar...

Will Thailand Become The World´s Biggest Golf Destination?

Lately Thailand golf tourism has skyrocketed to an estimated 750,000 arrivals in 2012, up 50% over the past three years. This is worth an estimated US$2 billion in revenue to the Kingdom. There is no doubt that Thai golf tourism is riding on the back of a general tourism explosion, with total foreign arrivals doubling over the last seven years to more than 22 million in 2012. While I personally would like Thailand golf to become the biggest golf destination in the world, I doubt that this will e...

Golf In Portugal Versus Golf In Thailand

Here are my rankings on the golfing in these 2 countries on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being best. Quality (30%) Portugal (9):  Even though there are only 70 golf courses Portugal is one of Europe’s best golf destinations. The Algarve region is the most famous golfing area and the best course there is Victoria Golf Vilamoura, home of the 2013 Portugal Golf Masters and tour stop for the European Tour. However, my course in Portugal is the Seve Ballesteros designed Porto Santo. This traditional links...

After Hours Thailand Golf

Here is a new story from Davy, previously the number one golf retailer in Southern California and now a converted Thai golf addict. When the phone rang it was a Thailand golf buddy all excited to tell me he had a game set up with some movers and shakers that were coming to town; and after a great lunch he had planned we would entertain them with a round of golf. Lunch was indeed great; authentic Thai delicacies rolled out by smiling courteous servers. Thailand hospitality may be the greatest in ...

LPGA Shines In Thailand

Thailand knows how to put on a show, and the top LPGA players will be at the Honda LPGA Thailand this month. With the worlds 59 best lady golfers in attendance, the Siam Country Club in Pattaya will be the perfect backdrop to kick off the LPGA tour season in style.This popular tournament was launched in 2006 when a certain Miss Hee-Won Han from South Korea won the inaugural event. Since then the likes of Suzann Petersen from Norway, Lorena Ochoa from Mexico , Ai Miyazato from Japan, Yanni Tseng ...

It’s Not Only Thailand Golf

  Golf for many of us is a very serious addiction. We have to have our regular fix! Come rain or shine, family vacations, or business meetings, we all make all the excuses needed to arrange that very crucial meeting which just happens to clash with golf. That is our ‘speak’ for sod it I am going to play golf anyway. Here golfing in Thailand, a lot of business is conducted on the golf course. Golfers in Thailand often travel with their so-called business associates and in some companies; ...

New Thai Golfers

In many countries around the world, golf is suffering from the global recession, and the industry will really begin to suffer unless it starts to focus on its future. You can play a game of football with friends after school with a ball and a couple of posts for goals. Same for baseball, you can play the game just with sticks for bats and cans for balls. But for new golfers to enter the sport, they first need to find and get to a golf course, and then they need to rent or maybe buy a set of cl...

Lady Golf Stars Shine In Thailand Once Again

Thailand knows how to put on a show, and the top LPGA players were all on display at the Honda LPGA Thailand this weekend. With virtually all the star names in contention, the Siam Country Club in Pattaya provided the perfect backdrop to kick off the 2011 LPGA tour season in style. This popular tournament was launched in 2006 when a certain Miss Hee-Won Han from South Korea won the inaugural event. Since then the likes of Suzann Petersen from Norway, Lorena Ochoa from Mexico and Ai Miyazato fro...

My Take On Golf Carts At Thailand Golf Courses

While most of my Thailand golf is played walking, there are times when a golf cart (buggy) is also useful. For example, for corporate days and golf tournaments carts are more versatile, suit a wider variety of players, and help keep the golf speed of play moving along at a reasonable pace for all. Then there are the Thailand golf courses with extreme elevation changes that are better left for walking by mountain goats as opposed to golfers in Thailand. These include the incredibly hilly Santibu...

Three Ball Golf Thailand

In my view, and I am sure many of you will agree, the best form of golf in Thailand is a ‘friendly’ four-ball, better-ball with three like-minded pals. The amicable banter and gamesmanship all go to make for a fun round, especially if there are a few bucks, or even the post-match round of drinks, riding on the result – in particular, in Thailand, if the caddies are encouraged to join in the wagering, say by doubling the tip of the caddies carrying for the winning pair. Sometimes people are nerv...

Thailand Golf Zone Gets New Authors

I bet some of you are getting tired of reading my Thailand golf articles, right? Well I have good news for you. I have enlisted the help of some of my friends, colleagues, golf professionals, and even a reader of this blog to liven up the Thailand Golf Zone. Now, in addition to my own views, you can read about the experiences several Thailand golf gurus. Over the coming days, weeks, months, and hopefully years various guest and expert Thailand golfers will all be contributing to these pages. S...

Thailand Adds Another Golf Event

Thailand will launch its newest golf tournament on the Asian Tour this season with the establishment of the inaugural Queen’s Cup in August. The Queen’s Cup presented by Bangkok Airways and Sports Authority of Thailand will be staged at the Santiburi Samui Country Club on the holiday isle of Samui from August 13 to 16, 2009. The US$300,000 tournament, sanctioned by the Asian Tour and Thailand PGA, will be held in honor of the Queen of Thailand. The Santiburi Samui Country Club provides a great ...

Fake Golf Clubs & Golf Balls in Thailand

Counterfeit golf products in Thailand are becoming increasingly troublesome for the Thailand golf industry. I know of one Phuket golf course that has stopped selling clubs in their pro shop as a result. Chris Faxon, an anti-counterfeiting consultant and one of the leading attorneys in the Thailand golf industry, estimates the counterfeit golf industry is valued at more than $100 million US worldwide on an annual basis, including Thailand. That figure has increased steadily over the last five ye...

Cambodia Border Dispute Being Settled Thai Style: Peacefully On T

Golf delegations from Cambodian and Thai defense ministries teed off this week in a spot of golf diplomacy ahead of talks aimed at resolving their territorial dispute. Cambodia's defence minister Tea Banh and his Thai counterpart Prawit Wongsuwan played a round in the northwestern tourist hub of Siem Reap with other military officials ahead of their Wednesday border negotiations. The round was hosted by the Phokeethra Country Club. General Neang Phat  said, “We are playing golf with ...

Singha Thailand Open 2009 & FREE Phuket Golf

The Thailand Open will make an emphatic return to the Asian Tour schedule from March 5 to 8 at the Laguna Phuket Golf Club and boast prize money of US$500,000. Having not been played since 2005 due to a lack of sponsorship the event is now back in full swing. The tournament welcomes on board Singha Corporation (as in Singha beer) as the title sponsor and the Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) and PTT Public Company Limited as premier sponsors. It will be a full-field event on t...

Tiger Woods’ Last Thailand Golf Visit

Tiger Woods' last trip to Thailand as a golf professional in early 2000 was a bit of circus. Politicians, media and other VIP’s almost stormed his plane when it touched down in Bangkok even before he could get his seat belt off. Tiger would describe it as the craziest week of his life but as usual gave one of his oh-so diplomatic answers he mentioned, "I always enjoy coming back to Thailand," continuing, "It's always neat to be back among family and friends."(ed. ye...

Golf Score Card Man

What do you do back home in the cold winter weather either before or after your Thailand golf holiday? Well how about sifting through all your golf memorabilia collected from past golf vacations? Here is a letter from a fellow reader of the Thailand Golf Zone that you might find interesting, and just maybe you can help Bob out. Hi Mark, I always get a lot of pleasure from reading your interesting articles on your Golfasian website, and I thought that just maybe some of your readers of Golfasia...