GOLF COURSES

REVIEWED: AL HAMRA GOLF CLUB RAS AL KHAIMAH, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

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THE SETUP

Al Hamra Golf Club is situated along the shores of the Arabian Gulf within the Northern Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah. Crafted by the esteemed golf course architect, Peter Harradine, the course seamlessly blends open water lagoons with desert landscapes, resulting in a breathtaking par 72 Championship course spanning 7,325 yards at full length. It offers five different tee options, catering to a range of players, from seasoned professionals to aspiring enthusiasts, making it an engaging and pleasurable golfing experience.

At the heart of the Al Hamra Village master plan stands the Al Hamra Golf Club, accompanied by practice facilities, a par 3 Academy course, illuminated golfing, a gymnasium, and some of the finest dining establishments in Ras Al Khaimah. These exceptional amenities further enhance the already impressive Village offerings, which encompass a mall, marina, and 5-star hotels.

WALDORF ASTORIA RAK

“Crafted by the esteemed golf course architect, Peter Harradine, the course seamlessly blends open water lagoons with desert landscapes, resulting in a breathtaking par 72 Championship course spanning 7,325 yards at full length.”

PRESENTATION

Crafted by Peter Harradine, this 18-hole golf course winds its way around four interconnected open-water lagoons, seamlessly merging with the tranquil waters of the Arabian Gulf. Following a pattern seen in many traditional courses, the front nine extends away from the Clubhouse, while the back nine returns to the Clubhouse along the lagoon’s edge.

The outcome is a remarkable Par 72 Championship Golf course, stretching 7,325 yards at its full length, thoughtfully designed with five tee options on every hole.

Regarded by many as the 19th hole, “The Bay” serves as the perfect gathering spot before or after a round of golf. Here, guests can savor their favorite drinks while enjoying live sports, or simply unwind on the terrace with a view of the 18th green.

THE COURSE

Crafted by Peter Harradine, a UAE resident renowned for his designs of over 200 courses worldwide, this course winds its way around four expansive open water lagoons. Notably, the Waldorf-Astoria and Ritz Carlton hotels accompany your journey throughout. With such esteemed companions observing your every shot, an additional layer of pressure accompanies your play, requiring your utmost attention throughout the round. It’s not solely the challenge of navigating the water hazards, the pace of the greens, or the strategically placed bunkers. What truly adds to the excitement is the risk of taking it head-on, assuming that a course with relatively gentle elevation will easily yield to your skills.

waldorf astoria rak

From the black tees, this presents a substantial challenge, stretching over 7,300 yards as a par 72, turning every shot into a thoughtful consideration. Navigating this course demands astute strategy, as fairways guide into lagoons, greens are guarded by sharp run-offs, and bunkers lie strategically, ready to catch any errant shots. The encouraging aspect is the availability of five tee choices, ensuring its suitability for play, regardless of your skill level.

The enjoyment doesn’t conclude with the setting sun. Al Hamra extends its appeal into the evening hours, illuminating nine of its holes with floodlights – the initial seven and the final two, forming a complex amalgamation of nighttime play over 9 holes. I gave it a try and discovered that the elongated shadows created by the lights elevated the level of challenge significantly. The shifting perspective made distance assessment quite intricate on the fairway, and when on the green, gauging the break became even more demanding. Nevertheless, it provides a welcome escape from the summer sun, adding a touch of golfing excitement for those seeking a unique adventure.

waldorf astoria rak

FINAL VERDICT

Undoubtedly, golfers coming to the region tend to prioritize rounds at renowned courses in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. However, underestimating the appeal of Al Hamra Golf Course would be an oversight. It offers comparable excellence, serenity, and an exclusive Middle Eastern golfing encounter, all while providing better value than its counterparts. Including Al Hamra Golf Course in your UAE golf itinerary is an absolute necessity.

 
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