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New Zealand North

Magnificent coastal scenery, thermal geysers and the mountains make up some of the incredible backdrops.

The Courses

 

Kauri Cliffs– # 74 in 2013 Golf Magazine's World Top 100

Kauri Cliffs was designed and built by David Harman of Golf Course Consultants, Orlando, Florida.
The par 72 championship golf course measures 6,510 metres and offers five sets of tees to challenge every skill level. 15 holes view the Pacific Ocean, six of which are played alongside cliffs which plunge to the sea. The beautiful inland holes wind through marsh, forest and farmland. Kauri Cliffs was named 49th best golf course in the world by Golf magazine and awarded Best New International Golf Course in 2001 by Golf Digest.

The course winds its way gradually toward the sea with a series of holes played through shimmering fescue grasses. Standout moments early include the short 3rd which has a pushed up green that is tough to hit from the left half of the fairway. The 4th is a heroic par five for the big hitters who can carry the right side bunkers and then blast over a corner hazard and into a large green perched at the end of a sheer drop-off. Both the 5th and 7th are long all carry par 3s with the sea out to your right, while sandwiched between is a brutal par 4 that demands a strong drive across a ravine followed by a blind, rising approach.

The back nine begins with some strategic golf within a deep valley, the ocean out of sight for a couple of holes but right back in your face at the long one shot 14th, which is set hundreds of feet above the water and stares straight down to the Cavalli Islands. The next three holes along the coast are the most dramatic as the golf gets closest to the cliff edges and the outlooks are totally uninterrupted. The sometimes drivable 16th heads toward the distant sea and is followed by the best and most spectacular hole on the course. The elevated tee shot on the 17th is played across a gorge to an oblique shelf fairway that follows a ridge as it falls toward a well bunkered green and an unbelievable backdrop.

 

Titirangi 

Conceived in 1914, Titirangi was privileged in 1926 to obtain the services of Dr. Alister MacKenzie (1870-1934) to redesign the course. Dr MacKenzie, designer of Augusta National, Royal Melbourne, Cypress Point and many outstanding courses liked what he saw. The ground was "exceptionally well adapted for golf, undulating, without being hilly".

Today the course is consistently rated in New Zealand's top five courses. The course has a N.Z.G.A slope rating of 130 off the Blue tees. At 6050 metres off the championship tees and a par of 70, Titirangi has won a reputation as "one of the longest short courses". The club course measures 5653 meters and the women's course is a par 72 at 5113 meters.

Wairakei

Wairakei

Wairakei International Golf Course was rated by Golf Digest to be in the top 100 courses in the world outside of the USA in 2005. It is located in the heart of the North Island and is set amongst the spectacular scenery of the Lake Taupo region. Officially opened in 1970, the course lies on 450 acres of natural rolling countryside and was developed to meet the rigorous design standards required for world class championship competition.

The difficult job of design was put in the hands of the late Commander John Harris, Michael Wolveridge and Peter Thomson. Commander Harris was England's leading and most travelled golf course architect, whose family had been involved in the construction of Moor Park, Wentworth and Sunningdale. Wolveridge, an Englishman who appreciated the subtleties of golf course architecture, was enriched by a spell on the US professional tour. This pair was enhanced by the involvement of one of the world's greatest ever playing professionals, Australian Peter Thomson, five times winner of the British Open plus many other tour events. With the aim of producing New Zealand's first internationally recognised golf course, there is little doubt in any New Zealander's mind that this trio exceeded all expectations.

 

Cape Kidnappers– # 38 in 2013 Golf Magazine's World Top 100

When Julian Robertson decided to build a second golf course in New Zealand that could rival if not better his first [the amazing Kauri Cliffs] he knew he had to do something special. He commissioned Tom Doak, probably the hottest Golf Course architect in the last 10 years, and obtained a site of rare and awesome beauty. Cape Kidnappers sits above towering cliffs with every hole having a view of the Pacific Ocean. The design incorporates picturesque fairways along the edge of the cliff tops, with greens situated where any ball that badly misses will plunge down into the ocean.

"The Cape is not true links terrain; instead, the land tilts toward the sea as a series of ridges jutting out toward the edge of the cliffs. Yet, the play is seaside golf at its finest. The surface is firm and fast, and the conditions can be windy, so the player who can control his trajectory will be master of the course. You'll hit heroic shots over the tops of the tea trees, and play cautiously along the edges of deep ravines. Every hole has a view of the Bay, and at the 6th and 15th holes it's possible to pull your approach off the very end of the earth, though it will take nearly 10 seconds of hang time for your ball to reach the ocean, 500 feet below.

"Enjoy your game, and enjoy the setting. You will never play golf somewhere like this again", comments designer Tom Doak.

 

Paraparaumu Beach

Situated on the Kapiti Coast, a very pleasant 50 minute drive north of the capital city, Wellington, Paraparaumu Beach enjoys a long held reputation as the premier links course in New Zealand. Paraparaumu Beach has hosted the New Zealand Open championship on 12 occasions as well as numerous prestigious professional and amateur tournaments.

The course was designed in 1949 by former Australian Open champion, Alex Russell, in partnership with Dr Alistair McKenzie, the world renowned course architect. The course has been widely acclaimed over the years. The great Australian golfer, Peter Thomson - winner of the British Open on five occasions and nine times New Zealand Open champion – had this to say about the course;

"I loved it instantly. We had nothing like it in Australia, which must have struck Alex Russell, who did the layout. Course designing approaches an art form, especially done in a perfect modelling medium like volcanic sand. Russell must have been ecstatic. What was left after his departure was a gem of enjoyment, a monument to the game and a gift to the future. When we all turn to dust, "Paraparaumu" the golf, should be still lying there as it was when the first golfers came by, with Kapiti an off-shore island standing guard to see that no one steals it away. And the winds will ever blow to test the golfer's will and integrity. Paraparaumu will be famed for a century yet."