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Asian Golf Travel Nation - June 2014

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Dear Golf Travelers,

Golf in AsiaWelcome to this edition of the Asian Golf Travel Nation, the source for news breaking information about Asian Golf. In addition, unique golf playing tips for Indochina's tropical environment, announcements of golf travel promotions, and our latest subscription offer are all integral parts of today's newsletter.

I'm sure you've by now heard about the current situation in Thailand with the military coup. There are many reports from the major news services and as usual these reports tend to highlight the worst of the situation, rather than present a balance view.

While people here are certainly concerned, there has been no widespread panic or violence. This is the 12th coup in Thailand in the last 80 or so years and there is no widespread panic or violence. 

I know it sounds terrible and in most countries people would be very alarmed.  Here it seems most people just shrug it off and go about their lives.  There are soldiers visible in some areas and at key intersections, though they look generally bored and tourists are having fun taking pictures with them. I believe it will likely be several months at least before fresh elections are called and a new government elected.

In the meantime, for foreign golfers (and us foreigners living in Thailand)  as well Thais outside of politics, life goes on more or less normally with the exception that a curfew has been put in place between 12 pm and 4 am.  I am hopeful the curfew will be lifted in the coming days, but no matter it just means that we eat/drink/sleep/wake-up a little earlier than normal without any other impact on our lives or golf tours.

On the plus side for golf visitors, the Thai Baht is now at its' weakest level against foreign currencies in some time and I expect this to continue for the foreseeable future. Also, here is (at least one) related article from Time Magazine about the situation for tourists: http://time.com/110076/is-thailand-safe/ as well as another recommended read in TTR Weekly.
Of course as alternatives to Thailand, the neighboring countries such as Vietnam, Malaysia, Cambodia and Bali, all offer great value golf holidays with fantastic golf courses, great hospitality and excellent accommodations.

For those of you who like escorted trips with a combination of the best golf, sightseeing, and cultural activities, I would like to invite you to join our friends at Perry Golf for their February 2015 Escorted Tour of Southeast Asia.  You can choose either the 10 night program to Cambodia and Vietnam, or the 14 night tour that add four nights in Bangkok, the culturally intense capital of Thailand. Either way the trip will be a guaranteed experience of a lifetime. Find out more information here.

As always there are many golf happenings around the region so with that, I invite you to read this edition of the Asian Golf Nation.

 Visit Golfasian Today!

Golf news from around the region:

Thailand
*Loch Palm Golf ClubPhuket: Taking advantage of the low season, Loch Palm Golf Club is undertaking some cosmetic course improvements. One of the aims is to improve drainage in the approach areas to the greens. Pictured is the signature 14th, a great downhill hole with panoramic views overs over Phuket Island.

 



Vietnam
*FLC Golf Links SamsonHanoi: In an about face and during a slow market, FLC Golf Links Samson in Thanh Hoa Province and around 4 hours from Hanoi has broken ground. Once completed, FLC Golf Links will be the second Nicklaus designed course in Vietnam, the first being Legend Hill also in Hanoi. A full international 5-star resort will be part of the golf complex and completion is expected in 2016. The 18-hole golf course will cover an area of 92.49 hectares. The land plot is located along the coast and on Sam Son beach.

 

Malaysia
*Els Club Teluk DataiLangkawi: Re-design work by the team from South African golfing legend Ernie Els transformed the former Datai Golf Club into a modern first-class venue and the recently re-opened Els Club Teluk Datai has been named South East Asia's Best Golf Course at the 2014 Asia-Pacific Property Awards held in Kuala Lumpur. This in itself is amazing as the course is barely open for 2 months and the judging must have taken place when the course was still closed! In any case, the Langkawi course will now go on to represent Asia-Pacific at this year's International Property Awards in Dubai. The layout will compete against other regional winners from Africa, the Middle East, Europe, United Kingdom and the Americas at the awards ceremony to find the 'World's Best Golf Course'.

The Els Club, Desaru CoastDesaru:  Not as well known for tourism as peninsula Malaysia's West Coast, there is a hive of golf activity around the Desaru area. Located around 2 hours up the east coast from Singapore and an equal distance from Kuala Lumpur, Desaru is mainly a family destination for those living in the nearby cities. However, this all seems to be changing. Construction at an international standard 27-hole course named The Els Club, Desaru Coast, a 9-hole short course, and an Els Performance Academy is well underway. Additionally, earth works has started at the Desaru Valley Golf Club site. The latter, once finished, will be South East Asia's first VJ Singh designed golf course. I can't wait to visit the area again as this was one of my favorite areas to visit in Malaysia when I lived in Singapore back in the early 2000's

With that I would like to once again thank those of you who have golfed with us recently, it was nice seeing you and I hope your trip was memorable one. 

The golf, culture, and beauty of SE Asia are perfectly suited for an unforgettable golf experience. This includes playing private members clubs and championship golf courses, enjoying the world's best cuisines and entertainment, taking daily spas and massages, and best of all at prices so reasonable that you will think the costs are too low!

Tailor-made itineraries to your specific travel preferences, expectations, group size, and budgets are our specialty; contact us for a competitive quote.

Until the next newsletter, happy golfing and I hope to see YOU in the area very soon!

Mark Siegel
Managing Director of Golfasian

 

- Asia Golf Week - Amateur Golf Weeks in Asia
Asia Golf Week

The next Amateur Golf Week will be held in Phuket from 8 - 14 June, 2014, one week prior to the highly anticipated Centara World Masters Golf Championship which is bound to be a Thailand's Best Week of Golf & Fun!

Our next two amateur golf week events in Cambodia and Vietnam are still open for signups, however, limited spots are available - hurry.

Our Director of Events, Mark Penfold is quite excited about hosting the group in Vietnam:
"I have recently spent time at the courses in Danang / Hoi An and believe the golfers are in for a great time both on and off the course.  The courses designers, Greg Norman, Colin Mongomerie and Nick Faldo have excelled themselves with each of the courses in Danang and the township of Hoi An is like going back to a town in the early 20's and 30's with little alleys filled with small restaurants and open markets. The players and partners are going to have a relaxing week here!" he said.

"The next events in the calendar are Cambodia 3 - 11 August then following straight into Vietnam 11 - 18 August. This schedule allows you the opportunity to play two weeks in Asia if you wanted a longer time on your golfing holiday" Mark added.

For further details please go to www.asiagolfweek.com and join our Facebook Page.

[Register today!]

- Golf Club Set Rental Service

Golf Club Set Rental ServiceDue to popular demand, Golfasian is now offering TaylorMade Graphite & Steel Golf Club Sets for rent during your stay in Thailand.

This gives you even more freedom and flexibility when planning your golf trip to Asia. Simply contact our golf travel experts and mention that you would like to rent clubs.

For more information contact us directly.

- Hua Hin Properties - Palm Hills Golf Club Villa For Sale

Hua Hin PropertiesThis Palm Hills Luxury Villa is situated in one of the prime locations in Palm Hills Golf Club. Overlooking the large and beautiful lake area, Palm Hills Luxury Villa has a fantastic view of the scenic nature on the golf club. Entering this beautiful property you are deceived by the actual size of it. Maintaining a strong sense of privacy, the entrance area contains a large driveway area with a large garage which is big enough for 2 cars and a couple of motorbikes. Walking down the pathway surrounded by lots of trees and plants, you will find two separately accessible bungalows. Each of these bungalows offers a large bedroom with en suite bathroom and they are great for guests.

Feel free to stop by our office and see what we can offer or take our property tour (free of charge).

For a complete listing of Thailand properties visit our website.

- Golf in a Kingdom on Facebook!

Golf in a Kingdom on FacebookVideo: How to play – The signature par 5, 13th Hole Muang Kaew Golf Club: 570/551/494 yds

For this How-to-play our Member's signatures holes we head to Muang Kaew east of Bangkok. In this case we are privileged to be guided by Khun White. White comes from a golfing family, her brother Pijit is currently competing on the Asian Tour. White started playing golf aged 5 and entered her first tournament at 11 years old. She was the Thai and Asia Pacific Junior Champion.

"I play from the white tees so it's 551 yards which is quite a stretch. There's a 90 degree dogleg after 200 yards so I am looking to cut the corner blind over the trees; a fore caddy checks the way is clear. After a drive of 230, I will lay up to about 120-140, requiring a very straight 3 wood because the fairway narrows and there is water left and bunkers right...it's a demanding shot. That should leave me an 8 or 7 iron to a long but narrow green protected by bunkers. There are lots of slopes and subtle borrows but if my approach is good it's a good birdy opportunity.

[View the Golf in a Kingdom Facebook Page]

- Golf Travel Testimonials

VinpearlI am writing to express my many thanks particularly to Vui, Tu and Thuy for the impeccable service during my tour of Vietnam. My travelling mate and I were extremely impressed by the tour. Everything from the pickup transfers, hotel selection and golf course choices we played at. I have certainly had a memorable time and have recommended your team to many of my golfing friends.
We are planning to continue your service and look forward to playing possibly Thailand in the near future.

In the meantime many thanks again and thanks for the memories. As you can see below Vinpearl was a highlight.

Adrian N.
Australia, June 2014

[Read more golf travel testimonials]
[Find out about Golfasian's Travel Satisfaction Guarantee]

- Golf Holiday in Myanmar - Destination Review

Myanmar - Destination ReviewMyanmar is one of the last virgin golf destinations in South East Asia for golf holidays boasting a wide variety of Golf Courses. After decades in the shadows Myanmar opened up to reveal a surprisingly robust and vibrant golfing community throughout the country. It is estimated there are up to 80 golf courses in Myanmar (formally Burma) some of the smaller public courses offering golf for as little as $5.

Myanmar features some great newer courses including the Pride of Myanmar, 'Pun Hlaing Golf Club' built in 2000 by Gary Player. Also being a former outpost of the British Empire there are a lot of older golf courses left behind by the British, which are kept in great condition such as Yangon Golf Club built in 1909. Some of the older golf courses have been renovated and they have matured over the years too offer fantastic venues for the adventurous Myanar golf traveler.

[Read the entire destination review]

- Featured Golf Course - Royal Mingalardon Golf and Country Club

Royal Mingalardon Golf and Country ClubRoyal Mingalardon Golf & Country Club is an 18 Holes Par 72 (7,200 yards) international standard golf course in Yangon. The 286 acre Royal Mingalardon Golf & Country Club is located 6 kilometers from the Yangon International Airport and 20 kilometers from the city center.

Each hole boosts its own identity created exclusively from water features, strategic bunkering and a mature landscape.

An exquisite balance between imposing challenges and sheer beauty. Manicured greens that are a spectacular pleasure to behold and breathtaking tees that are arguably one of the best that you have ever set your eyes on.

[Read more about one of Myanmar's Best Golf Courses]

- Featured Hotel - Thiripyistaya Sanctuary Resort Bagan

Thiripyistaya Sanctuary Resort BaganBagan Thiripyistaya Sanctuary Resort is situated on the banks of the Irrawaddy, Myanmar's river of history and legend. The Resort sprawls over 24 acres of landscaped gardens, which is home to mature tropical trees and flowering plants, as well as native birds and a number of small tame animals. Every morning our gorgeous peacocks, Myanmar's national bird, go for a walk in our garden. Oriented towards the west, the Resort revels in panoramic river views, glorious sunsets and silver moonglow, and a pervading atmosphere of profound peace, warmth and comfort.

[Read more about one of Myanmar's Best Hotels]

- Golf Trip Idea: 14 Days Myanmar Golf & Culture Holiday Package

14 Days Myanmar Golf & Culture Holiday PackageThis 14 days Myanmar Golf & Culture Holiday Package is an excellent opportunity to combine a culutural visit to magical Burma and combine it with the best golf courses that Myanmar has to offer. You will stay in the very best hotels in each destination and be taken to the must see sightseeing attractions within each destinations. This fully guided and customizable Myanmar Golf Holiday is a truly unique way to experience this mystical country.

[Best of Myanmar Golf & Culture Holiday Package Itinerary...]

Asia Golf Specials
- Press Release: Siam Country Club Plans Hotel, Golf Academy

Siam Country Club Plans Hotel, Golf AcademyAlready firmly established as Thailand's largest and most successful golf complex, Siam Country Club near Pattaya has two further major projects on the drawing board – an on-site hotel-cum-golf lodge and a US-style golf school, with dormitory-accommodation for aspiring young golfers.

Siam Country Club's managing director, Prasertchai Phornprapha, has revealed these plans in a video produced for Golf In A Kingdom, a collective of Thailand's leading golf courses and resorts, of which Siam CC was a founding member.

Khun Chai, who came to the family business a decade ago when the 27-hole Plantation Course was about to open, pays tribute in the video to the foresight and commitment of his grandfather, Dr Thaworn Phornprahpa, in creating the (now) three-course complex more than 40 years ago.

Now, as Siam Country Club opens its third course, Waterside, Khun Chai reveals the club's future plans.

"We have many things on the drawing board," he says in the video, "including a small hotel and a golf academy. Not a golf academy where you pay by the hour to learn to play golf. We're talking about an academy inn the same sense as you see in the United States – a real school, a real dormitory, a real educational program, something that's geared to being a little more professional. It's just a matter of time. It's all in the pipeline. It's just a matter of what we're going to build first".

The video can be seen on YouTube: http://youtu.be/LR4Syes_IiY

[Read the entire Press Release]

- Golf Course Maintenance Updates

Thailand

  • Bangkok
    • Bangkok Golf Club - Course will be undergoing coring green in June. Final dates to be confirmed.
    • Lakewood Country Club - The Lake & Wood Courses will be undergoing coring green during 1 May - 31 May.
    • Royal Golf & Country Club - Course will be undergoing coring green during 16 June - 28 July.
    • Thana City Golf & Country Club - Course will be undergoing coring green during 18 May - 21 May.
  • Hua Hin
    • Banyan Golf Club - Course will be undergoing coring green during 12 May.
    • Black Mountain Golf Club - The course will be closed from 9 - 12 June for the 7th Singha-SAT Thai LPGA Championship 2014
  • Pattaya
    • Laem Chabang International Country Club - Coring green schedule: Courses A - 17 June, Course B - 17 April, Course C - 17 May.
    • Siam Country Club, Old Course - Course will be undergoing coring green during 2 June.
    • Siam Country Club, Plantation Course - Coring green schedule: Courses A - 9 June - 29 June, Course B - 30 June - 20 July, Course C - 21 July - 8 August.
  • Phuket
    • Blue Canyon Country Club, Canyon Course - Course will be undergoing coring green during 16 June - 18 June & 3 November to 5 November.
    • Blue Canyon Country Club, Lakes Course - Course will be undergoing coring green during 5 May - 7 May & 6 October - 8 October.
    • Laguna Phuket Golf Club - 9 holes will be closed for 18 months from July 2013 onwards. The back nine holes have been freshly renovated and are ready for play while the front nine holes are closed for renovation until approximately early 2015.
  • Chiang Mai
    • Alpine Golf Resort - Course will be closed form 16 June - 7 July for the Chiang Mai Golf Classic 2014 tournament.
    • Gassan Khuntan Golf & Resort - Course renovation. Expected completion date in August 2014.
    • Gassan Lake City - Course renovation. Expected completion date in October 2014.
    • Royal Chiang Mai Golf Club & Resort - The course will be undergoing coring green & top dressing from 6 June - 20 June.
    • Summit Green Valley Chiang Mai Country Club - The course will be undergoing coring green from 9 June - 30 June.

Vietnam

  • Hanoi
    • Hanoi Golf Club, Heron Lake Golf Club and Resort, Tam Dao Golf Club, Van Tri Golf Club - Closed every Monday morning for maintenance.
    • Kings Island Golf Resort - Mountainview course is closed on Mondays and Lakeside course is closed on Tuesdays for maintenance.
  • Saigon
    • Twin Doves Golf Club - The will be holding a tournament on 6, 13, 15, 19, 20 & 27 June.
  • Danang
    • Danang Golf Club - The course will be holding a tournament on 7 June & 21 June.

Malaysia

  • Kuala Lumpur
    • Awana Genting Highlands Golf & Country Club - 9 holes closed alternately every Monday.
    • Glenmarie Golf & Country Club - Garden Course closed every Monday, Valley Course closed every Wednesday.
    • Kota Permai Golf & Country Club - The course will undergo course maintenance on 7 July and playability will be affected for ~3 weeks. Closed on Mondays for maintenance.
    • Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club - Closed for the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia from 9 October - 12 October and for the CIMB Classic from 30 October - 2 November.
    • Mines Resort & Golf Club - Closed on Mondays for maintenance.
    • Saujana Golf & Country Club - Palm 1 is closed on Mondays, Palm 2 is closed on Tuesdays, Bunga Raya 1 is closed on Wednesday and Bunga Raya 2 is closed on Thursdays for maintenance.
  • Langkawi
    • Gunung Raya Golf Resort - Course will undergo green renovation. The first 9 holes will be closed from 23 June until 29 June while the back 9 are available for play.The back 9 holes will be closed from 30 June until 06 July while the front 9 are available for play.
  • Malacca
    • Orna Resort - Closed on Mondays for maintenance.
  • Johor Baru
    • Horizon Hills Golf & Country Club - Closed on Mondays for maintenance.

Indonesia

    • All golf courses are in good condition

Singapore

    • All golf courses are in good condition.
- Golf Tournaments

Thailand Golf TournamentsPhuket Amateur Golf Week - June 2014
Date: June 8 - 14, 2014 | Location: Phuket, Thailand [Find out more]

Centara World Masters Golf Championship - June 2014
Date: June 15 - 21, 2014 | Location: Hua Hin, Thailand [Find out more]

Cambodia Amateur Golf Week - July 2014
Date: July 27 - August 4, 2014 | Location: Siem Reap, Cambodia [Find out more]

Vietnam Amateur Golf Week - August 2014
Date: August 4 - 10, 2014 | Location: Danang, Vietnam [Find out more]

Pattaya Amateur Golf Week - October 2014
Date: October 18 - 25, 2014 | Location: Pattaya, Thailand [Find out more]

Chiang Mai Amateur Golf Week - October 2014
Date: October 25 - November 01, 2014 | Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand [Find out more]

- Best of the Blog Thailandgolfzone.com

Pattana Golf Resort

Pattana Golf ResortIt is very rare these days that I get to play a new course in my own backyard. Therefore, when my golfing buddies suggested playing at Pattana Golf Resort in Pattaya, I jumped at the change with much excitement.

Pattana is a bit out of the way as getting to the course involved around a 1 hour drive from Pattaya or 2 hour ride from Bangkok. Either way the drive is pleasant enough as the road are good and there is little traffic along the way. Upon arrival I immediately saw the large club house, golf resort, and collection of golf villas. With this kind of infrastructure Pattana must be catering for long staying golfers and those looking for intensive stay and play packages.

[Read the entire article]

Other golf stories can be found at the Thailand Golf Zone, Vietnam Golf Zone and Phuket Golf Zone where there are over 600 other original articles dealing exclusively with golf in Asia and golf travel.

I would love to hear about any golf tips that any of you may have developed for getting the maximum enjoyment from your golf trips, and can incorporate some in future articles. Therefore if you have any golf tips or suggestions you would like to share, please let me know by dropping me an email.

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- Golfing Tips by Ian Morgan - Local Conditions

You might think that in a hot country the ball will fly far and run forever on sun baked ground. In truth there's less run on the ball than at most European courses, so if you're used to 50 yards of run on your drives, get used to seeing the ball stop where it lands because of the strong grasses or wet fairways in low season.

Local conditions can also affect the flight of the ball, so for instance on a humid morning you might find taking an extra club will help.

[Read more Golf Tips Articles]

If you have any other questions regarding golf tips to help you with your game email us at info@golfasian.com and we will reply in upcoming newsletters

For more golf tips visit www.golfthink.com

- Meet Golfasian at these Trade/Roadshows/Fam-Trips

-Golfasian has a full schedule of tradeshows and roadshows during the next few months.

You can find us at the following events:

  • July 24 - 31, 2014 - Thailand Golf Road Show - Australia (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane)

Arrange an appointment with Golfasian at one of these exhibits.

- About Us & Contacts
GolfasianIf any reader would like to suggest a topic to be covered or better yet contribute materials, photos, or even commissions an article please contact us by e-mail, we welcome the help.

 

  • Licensed by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), License No: 14/00515
  • Licensed by the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, License No: 79-302/2011
  • Recommended by the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA)
  • Member of Association of Thai Travel Agents (ATTA)
  • Member of the International Association of Travel and Tourism Professionals (SKAL)
  • Member of the American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM)
  • Founder and member of Golf in a Kingdom (GIAK)
  • Founder and member of Golf Coast Vietnam (GCV)
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