As golf course designers, Ben Crenshaw and I have sought sand-based sites where random contours shaped by the wind provide the foundation for interesting golf, sites where the land more than the designers determine the design and character of the course.
At Te Arai Links we have been given a great gift, a uniquely special site for golf, comprised of sand dunes and landforms sculpted by the wind, adjacent to the sea.
Te Arai’s landforms vary from heaving sand ridges and meandering valleys to rumpled contours reminiscent of the classic seaside links on which the game began. These contours are the foundation and inspiration for the golf holes of Te Arai Links. The holes are as varied in appearance and character as the land itself. There are highly individualistic, some might even say, quirky holes like the shortish par fours at three, six and sixteen, each reflecting the drama and unique character of the landforms that created their concepts. There are more traditional yet equally dramatic holes like the inland second, the tenth and eleventh; and there are the visually spectacular seaside holes at seven, eight, nine and fifteen through eighteen.
There are lengthy holes and finesse holes. There are holes with varying shapes and sizes, with character and golf strategic are based upon the natural contours we discovered on site.
For those who consider such things, the South Course at Te Arai Links has sixteen ocean view golf holes and eight holes bordering directly on the sea, without question, it will be a photogenic and visually stunning golf course.
When paired with its sister course, the North Course being designed by Tom Doak, we believe Te Arai Links will become a must visit destination for golfers travelling the world in search of captivating golf.