Billed as one of the best links courses in Asia the Marina Bay Golf Course in Singapore is a superb design by South African Phil Jacobs. Measuring 6493 metres the par 72 course includes various design elements included to create a challenging and interesting golf course that can be enjoyed by many. The facilities at Marina Bay are superb, and the driving range is one of the largest you will see in Asia, with four tiers and 150 bays that operate from 7 until 10.45 every day.
A well-equipped club house and pro shop provide everything that the golfer may need before, during or after their round to complete the perfect day of golf.
Golfers are introduced to the golf course in style with the first hole, a great starting hole. From the blue tees it measures a short 324 metres but do not let the distance fool you, the fairway stares you in the face with its enormity, a shared fairway with the 10th, and a plethora of bunkers that are dotted across the centre. A stream cuts across in front of the green creating a challenging second, in fact the hole is reminiscent of the 1st at the Old Course St Andrews.
For many the 4th will be a new experience as you are faced with a 617-metre par 6. This is the longest hole in Singapore, and is a test from start to finish. A good two shot avoiding the collection of bunkers to the right of the fairway is a good start. More bunkers protect the landing area for the second shot, and for longer hitters the ever-narrowing fairway is protected by a water hazard to the right. The approach can be made more difficult by the encroaching trees as the hole slides around to the right up to the undulating green. For many four good shots will see them safely on the green.
It is hard to single out holes at Marina Bay as there really aren´t any weak or misplaced holes that stand out, but there are another two holes that are worth mentioning and that paint the picture for the quality of design and layout.
Hole 13 is possibly the signature hole for the course, a par three to an almost island green. At 119-metres it is a true target par three and from the raised tee the golfer is presented with a beautiful view of the putting green. Although not long the prevailing wind cuts across the hole requiring a well struck shot to this relatively small island green.
And finally, the final hole. A par 5 that offers longer hitters the chance of getting home in two.
A little under 500-metres the hole is reachable and the wide inviting fairway tempts you to give it a little bit more from the tee. Avoid the bunkers to the right and you will have a shot at the green, which like the first is protected by a stream that slices across the fairway a few metres short of the green. Go for the green in two and you must ensure you carry the stream, two of the 87 pot bunkers lie in wait to the right to catch anything off-line. For most this should be a straightforward par, with a healthy serving of birdies along the way.