Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Best Holes in Golf

You might be an enthusiastic leisure golfer, but do you keep track of the best holes on each course you visit? The good news is that the pros have created a run-down of the best options for you, all around the world. The tough part is picking out which resort you'll book when you do your tour.

1st Hole
Doonbeg Golf Club, Ireland

What Experts Say: “The most beautiful opening hole in the world, a gentle par five that plays slightly downhill to a green surrounded on three sides by towering dunes. From the fairway the Atlantic Ocean can be glimpsed through gaps in the dunes.”

Where to Stay: The Kildare Hotel is a AA 5 Red Star hotel, which guarantees you one of the most luxurious stays in all of Ireland. The Kildare features two championship golf courses and a fantastic river for fishing during your break from the course -- plus a spa for winding down.

5th Hole
The Abaco Club, Bahamas

What Experts Say: “Every course needs a drivable par four and this one, with the turquoise waters of Winding Bay all along the left-hand side, is a classic. Don't let the heavenly setting distract you from your game.”

Where to Stay: Stay at The Abaco Club and experience a beautiful, tranquil stop at a leading Bahamas hotel. A 534-acre oceanfront estate stretches as far as the eye can see, and it certainly features more than just golf: A European spa and fitness center, watersports lessons, and lauded dining options are just some of the interesting options.

13th Hole
Trump International Golf Club, Grenadines

What Experts Say: “The jewel in any golfing crown, this hole provides 360-degree views of the Atlantic, the Caribbean and the neighboring Grenadine Islands. Never mind the golf, this one is perfect in all sorts of ways.”

Where to Stay: The Canouan Resort at Carenage Bay features beachfront suites and private villas for the pampered visitor. Signature bars and restaurants provide exemplary dining and happy hour options post-exploration, and on your days off from golfing, spend time on the white sand beach on the 300-acre resort.

13th Hole
Canyon Course, Blue Canyon Country Club, Thailand

What Experts Say: “Teeing off over water, this hole then doglegs sharp right around a canyon uphill to a shallow green. With a forest along the left of the fairway, beauty and danger are everywhere.”

Where to Stay: Banyon Tree Bangkok provides an excellent complement to your stay at the country club. Located in Bangkok's business district, it's still perfectly situated for shopping and dining. Listed on the Gold List as one of the best places to stay in the world, the Banyon Tree Bangkok won't disappoint.

7th Hole
Pebble Beach Golf Links, California, United States

What Experts Say: “The shortest par three in Major championship golf, with the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean pounding onto the rocks behind.”

Where to Stay
: Hyatt Regency Monterey Resort & Spa is a quiet, calming location not far from Pebble Beach, and it's an excellent place to unwind. Renovated accommodations have a certain peaceful appeal that can soothe the body and mind after a day out exploring.

19th Hole
Turnberry Golf Club, Scotland

What Experts Say: “With a professional tee perched 50 feet above breaking Irish Sea waves and a famous lighthouse to the left, the raw beauty of this hole represents the very best that links golf has to offer.”

Where to Stay: The Gleneagles Hotel is located on an 850-acres estate in Perthshire, and it's been awarded the AAA Five Red Star. One of the Great Golf Resorts of the World, the top-tier hotel offers superior service with Exclusive Complimentary Perks via your booking.

You've got the list and the hotel, but don't forget to check the season you're booking to stay. Who wants to plan for golf in the rainy season, or in the hottest month of the year?

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