Bukit Jalil Golf & Country Resort has a reputation. I’m not sure whether it’s a myth or not, so it might not be entire true, but there were stories abounding on how in a fit of rage (probably after losing a big bet), a golfer bashed another golfer to death on this golf course. I’m not sure whether it adds to its notoriety, but I recall my last experience in Bukit Jalil was not a great one. Then again, as in KGPA, I was just starting out in golf and was a complete hacker in the game, to be fair to the course.
I was invited once again to play there, so armed with our trusty GilaCam, I went.
The club is not too out of the way. You can either come from the LDP from PJ. Pass the Sunway toll and head straight to TPM (Technology Park Malaysia). You will go past Kinrara on the Bukit Jalil highway (which is just a narrow trunk road jammed like a monkey’s artery), and soon reach a traffic light. At the lights, take a left and about 100 m up the road, a right turn into the club. You can also come in from the Sg Besi highway. Make a turn to the Bukit Jalil National Sports Complex and head towards TPM. Turn right at the TPM entrance and you will be on the other side of the trunk road. Look for the traffic light that enables you to turn right. After that right, 100m, you will see a right turn.
Yet another way is from KL Old Klang Road. Just head towards OUG (overseas union garden). Opposite the mall, there is a right turn traffic lights. Take it and go straight ALL THE WAY. This is a new road and you will eventually end up on the road where you need to take a left into Bukit Jalil golf course.
It gets a 3 because no matter which road you use, you will be jammed like crazy, unless you get the early morning flights….and by the time you’re done, you’re still jammed up. For some reason, that whole area seems to have 3-4 times the amount of people the infra can allow for.
I played a weekday, and it cost me RM70 for walk in, no food included. Now this is by no means steep, it’s quite reasonable, especially if you take into account that it’s a fairly centralized course, where people from KL, PJ can access (which is also bad, as you will see later). Whether RM70 is worth it for this course, well, I’d say it’s not. It should be priced a little lower if it’s based strictly on features. But as location is everything, I’d say it’s quite reasonable.
The first thing I usually do is check the website, not to get information (since we have concluded golf websites are bloody useless in giving REAL information about the course), but to have a good laugh. I don’t know who they get to write these lines:
‘Impressive… This is one word that aptly describes the Bukit Jalil Golf & Country Resort.
There is a general air of calmness at the BJGCR. The warmth is immediate as you step into the lobby area. The gentle breeze that blows from the green field caresses your skin as you sip your morning coffee at the “open-air” golfer’s lounge.
The 18-hole golf course, designed by renowned Australian designer Mr.Max Wexler, offers golfers a real challenge at hole No.18. Golfers call it a ‘real test of one’s swing’.’
I really would like to point out the part where it says it caresses my skin as I sip my morning coffee at the “open air” golfer’s lounge. Usually anything in quotes means the writer is attempting a joke, or being sarcastic, or just being ignorant about the use of quotes. First of all, the lounge is not open air. It just overlooks the golf course. This is consistent with 99.99% of golf clubs in the world.
Second of all, I wish they would not use the word caress without referring to a beautiful woman doing the caressing. It’s just wrong to have another thing caress you.
Third, the Milo I ‘sipped’ cost me RM4.90. For a glass. I could purchase a small tin of Milo, go back into the kitchen and make milo for 20-30 people, and still bring home some for my dog.
Fourth, it took aeons for my Milo to appear. I mean how long does it take to make a cup of milo? 20 minutes? Come on! Are we grinding cocoa at the back or what?
And I dare, double dare anyone who actually uses the phrase ‘real test of one’s swing’ in conversation. Can you imagine two contractors lining up for the 18th going:
Contractor 1: Well, here we are at the 18th.
Contractor 2: Jolly good old boy. It certainly is a real test of one’s swing! I can’t wait to sip some coffee and have the wind caress my skin again.
Nobody talks like that. A more realistic conversation would be:
Contractor 1: Aiyaaaa, %^&##&, @#$&%*($ 17th hole should have par! Now we’re at this &#*$&$^ 18th.
Contractor 2: #&$^!!!! #^$&#^$ #*#(@*#& @#(*$! #*$&#*. @#$*#& #*$#&$ !@$%*%! Correct or not??
Contractor 1: #$#^&$# #&$##&^ )_)#@$@#*($&@#*(@# *@(#&$@##@$!!!!
I know these are all marketing speak and they need to write like this. But ‘caress your skin’? Come on, stop it!
This club’s service is pathetic. First, the aforementioned milo with it’s pricing of mythical proportions. For lunch, we had the same experience. It took so long for my noodle to appear, I went to shower and dress up. When I came out, a good 40 minutes after ordering, they only just arrived with my food. Now, I know Tropicana was as bad, but that was serving a full house. Here, we only had one more table aside from us patronizing this place. And they only had two people at that table. In fact, they weren’t even eating, just drinking!!
The price here is absolutely cut throat. NEVER order any drinks, order only plain water (which they take from the tap no doubt). Any glass will cost you RM5 upwards. Because I wasn’t eating meat for the meantime, I ordered my noodles with only vege. I asked them to add vegetables (to replace the meat). Instead, I got nothing. Just 3 strands of vegetables and noodles and they still charged me RM9 for the small plate.
Again, if you think this has nothing to do with golf, welcome to Malaysia. Food is the primary base for everything, so if the food experience is crap, the golfing experience is crap. I’m sorry, we cannot divorce them from each other.
In fact they suck so bad that when we asked for the bill, nobody would come with it, until we shouted a few times. Are they deaf or just money phobic?
To top it all, if you want a locker, you need to put a deposit. Normal right? Yeah, usually RM10 or RM20 would be enough. Here in Bukit Jalil, you need to cough up RM50 for the deposit.
And the towel stinks! Come on! For RM50, I expect a glass of wine and an attendant to hand me my towel. Well, maybe not the second part, but RM50? Pfft.
Ouch. The fairway gets hit bad because there is just no letting up on the course. There are only 18 holes, and the amount of traffic here even on a weekday is crazy. Most of the people walk in the morning, and although buggy is on track, some idiot golfer has gone in and messed up the fairway as well. This is probably the same murderous golfer who whacked his playing partner to death.
Aside from that, it didn’t hold up well after yesterday’s downpour. Plug balls, dirt, casual water, the works. Also, although Bermuda, I just don’t feel comfortable hitting from it. They have tufts of grass and you can see the bare dirt beneath. It’s like playing on a balding guy with a comb over. You know, those guys who are thinning at the top, so they grow their sides so they can mop up the side to the top. It’s weird. If I were to bald (which most likely I will, thanks to my genes), I’ll just shave bald. I rather look like a Buddhist monk than have that combover. If it’s gone, it’s gone. Life’s tough. Hopefully, I’ll be married by then and no longer need to impress anyone anymore. Same thing here for the golf course. You know there aint much there, so they try to spread the grass. You fat your shot and you’ll be splashing dirt all over.
I can’t really make of the greens. From the outside, it really looks like crap. Sandy, bald patches all around. But every shot I hit with a reasonable trajectory, it held it like a beaver biting a tree. The Par 5 11th where I was lying 140 meters and I hit my 8 iron, it landed, hop once and bit, 4 feet away for a par. Likewise, the par 3 14th where I hit a 9 iron to 3 feet (and missed the darn birdie), and the par 5 17th where my 6 iron held the green, and I proceeded to 3 putt for bogey. If not for my retarded putting, I would have just be 2 over for the second 9.
I’m giving the greens a good score here. It’s not the best, although the ball bit it with a vengeance, those patches really make a darn mess out of my already messed up putting.
Now I know what this course reminds me of. The horrific Berjaya Hills course. A quick check revealed the problem. This was yet another Berjaya project, i.e a junk. Berjaya in Malay translates to Succeed in English. It doesn’t really say succeeding in what though, so I guess it succeeds in making golf courses that suck. Bravo!
Lalang all around. We’ve established long ago that lalang is bad. It’s too long to actually play your ball if you do find it, and you are probably hitting a King Cobra’s egg anyway and likely to be stung to death after that by that king cobra. The rough is just reminiscent of our adventure in Berjaya Hills. Hit the ball in there and it disappears into oblivion. What I detest are bunkers that are full of rocks, since it scratches my clubs. Nobody scratches my clubs but me! When I tomahawk it, yes, then it deserves to be tomahawked for producing a crap shot. But scratched for getting me out of the bunker?? My poor clubs!
Bad, bad rough.
Here’s the deal. After a while, probably as we were in the middle of the second nine, I was wondering if we were going around in circles, and some monkey is just replacing the hole signs with a different number. Because ALL the holes play, feel and look the same! It’s tee off, on the left OB, right is hazard. Oh, carry a hazard as well. Ok, another one. OB left, right hazard. Another carry. The fairways are ample enough to go with the driver without constipating it ( a term that gives the 4 courses-Nilai Springs, Nameless Course in Seremban 3, Monterez and Seri Selangor-the name, “Constipated Courses of Malaysia”).
Even the signature hole, the 18th with a 185m carry of the water is played ho-hum. In fact, I drove it so far, I almost OBed myself past the fairway, past the buggy track, almost past the OB line at the rough. It could be tough nut for a person without a carry of 190-200m, in that case, just lay it up short.
Some courses have tall pine trees or refreshing, grand, leafy trees surrounding the green, the holes, the tee off. Like in Melaka, where it is really cooling and ‘green’. Bukit Jalil have similar features. Just replace those pine or leafy trees with condominiums. It’s like condominiums being developed or already developed staring down at us in every hole! It gives the course a claustrophobic feeling, and golf courses without the ‘open’ness isn’t really a golf course at all.
Bukit Jalil is definitely not a pretty course at all.
Fun Factor (2/5)
Not many of us had fun. I started the day double bogeying my first three holes before getting a grip of myself on the back 9 and flush in some good shots here and there. I played reasonably well after a week plus lay off, but everyone felt a little lethargic. I guess it’s the fact that each hole plays almost the same, looks the same and soon, even smell the same.
The 18th is still a nice hole to end with, I admit, but it’s not something we haven’t seen before. The snaky Par 5 Hole 9 is probably a better hole to end with, since it’s really narrow, and really snaky. I know this isn’t a great description, but hey, we’re hackers. If you like description, get the guy who writes about being caressed by the wind.
But aside from that, all the Par 3s were neither here nor there and no, I can’t say it was extremely fun at all.
Bukit Jalil is a course you will probably play and forget about it completely afterwards. Each hole has similar characteristics, and I don’t know if it’s just Berjaya’s way of doing things, they really really really suck at maintaining a course. Avoid this course if possible, but because of it’s close proximity to PJ and KL, you will likely find yourself on it sooner or later. Whatever you do, avoid the F&B area, and go somewhere else for your nutrition.
The good: Traveling is easy and fast, if you avoid the massive jams; these greens look like crap but really plays well; a couple of nice holes like the 9th and 18th.
The bad: Possibly the worst service F&B in Malaysia; fairways are like crap; rough and bunkers are no better; every hole is like the same, it’s like we’re all caught in a loop; aesthetics is just lacking, with so many condominiums and high raise spoiling the skyline.
The skinny: 15 of 40 divots (37.5%). It’s a no go for Bukit Jalil. As a golf course, it lacks character and maintenance, except for the greens. Don’t expect to be sipping your coffee (the lousy service will prevent that) or get caressed by the wind (the condominiums will prevent that). Get golf, coffee and caressing elsewhere!
Bukit Jalil Score Card
Bukit Jalil Information
Bukit Jalil 57000 ,Kuala Lumpur
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