A group of 48 Japanese American golfers in Thailand last week played a golf tournament in Hua Hin. Here are the tour leader’s comments on the Hua Hin golf courses, which he had last played some seven years ago:
The first day of our Hua Hin golf tour we played we played Majestic Creek Country Club (known to the locals as “Magic Stick”). Whilst it has always been a challenging layout, the course was a bit unkempt, the clubhouse showed signs of age, and there were even rumours from the staff of the club’s imminent demise. Despite these drawbacks the course was still good enough to satisfy us for the opening tournament round. The 18th hole in particular was among the groups favourite; but don’t, as I did, get into the bunker about 100 yards short of the green. After several attempts at a shot over water to a narrow green with the pin at the front, a quick ten resulted!
Royal Hua Hin was the next venue, a classic layout and a long time favourite. Money has been spent recently on both a new clubhouse and the golf course, which I have rarely seen in such good condition. The injection of funds is understandable. Royal Hua Hin Golf Course is leased for 30 years from the State Railway of Thailand by Boon Rawd Brewery, the producer of the world-famous Thai beer Singha. The third-generation President of Boon Rawd Brewery, Khun Santi Bhirombhakdi, is a keen golfer and the company are committed to improvements in facilities while retaining the original nature and historical royal legacies. One really nice touch is that local children are allowed to practice on the practice range free of charge every evening and also enjoy a low twilight green fee rates.
The third day of our tour we played Springfield Village Golf and Spa. Previously, I had always considered Springfield to be the outstanding Hua Hin golf course, normally kept in the best condition day in day out throughout the year. Whilst the clubhouse and facilities remain 5-star, frankly we were a little disappointed in the course condition, not matching the club’s previous very high standards. It seemed to us that perhaps more attention is being given to the clubhouse and property development than to the golf course. Or perhaps they had been suffering unusual weather conditions.
The final round was played at Hua Hin’s seventh course, Black Mountain Golf Club. Some of the locals consider the green fees as too expensive, but for us who had travelled half way around the world, Black Mountain was just want we were looking for. Whilst the layout is still being bedded in, it is already a test for the top golfers. The playing surfaces are wonderful and the panoramic views are stunning, especially from the clubhouse. The course is so good that it is being readied for the Black Mountain Masters, a stop on the 2009 Asian PGA tour. Everyone on a Hua Hin golf tour should try this course at least once, it is that good!