Great bunkering at the 9th hole12th with villas in the background Carry over water at the 16th hole
My tour starts with the Jack Nicklaus Samanah Country Club which opened for play in 2008. The first thing that grabs your attention as you enter the resort is the first-class practice facilities that Samanah has to offer. You then arrive at the stunning clubhouse. I should say at this point that all the clubhouses on the trip impress me: everything is geared towards give the golfer the perfect experience, especially the showers which you will so enjoy at the end of each of your rounds.
The course is in immaculate condition. You have a choice of five different tee options ranging from 7,365 to 5,753 yards. Itís a gentle start to the round with the opening hole being only 389 yards across a small stream and waste area. The fairway flows between olive trees and cactus plants with bunkers left and right to catch the wayward tee shot. The green has plenty of movement in it, so make sure youíre on the right level or you could be sending your ball on a rollercoaster ride.
The course is in superb condition and you can see that itís bedded in nicely. With stunning views of the Atlas Mountains, itís a beautiful part of the world in which to play golf. A lot of the resortís villas and apartments are still being built, so hopefully youíre not of the Colin Montgomerie persuasion and easily put off by a bit of bagging etc.
Nicklaus has done a great job pulling this rabbit out of the hat. Stand-out holes for me are; apart from the opener, are: the dogleg left fourth hole, a 418-yard par-4 that slopes gently down towards the green; and the sixth hole, probably one of the easiest par 4s on this track measuring only 363 yards but with the Atlas range for a backdrop. Take a bit of time on the tee to just soak up that view Ė itís times like these that you realise why golf is such a great game to play.
I could go on about the rest of the course, but the finishing holes to each nine are both well-crafted and strategic holes. Throw in some par-3s over water and when youíre cooling off under that well-earned shower you will realise you have played a great track.