Unlike traditional reviews, I thought of just putting in some passing thoughts on 3 courses we played in Thailand last year. Now this was a long time ago, and I had every good intention after the trip to sit down and write out reviews for all the courses we played in. But of course, maybe the Thai shopping or street food distracted me, I don’t know….I ended chucking this one side and not thinking about it until it was, well…too late to think about it.
I think there were 10 of us, so we always had 4 guys in 2 flights and 2 ladies in one flight. It was a great time, I recall. That was even before I got the little guy, so we were obviously more free back then, compared to now, which at this moment that I am typing this, I am at Starbucks with my son sleeping in the stroller next to me and me praying that he doesn’t wake up. And just by dumb luck, a screaming kid had to be sitting next to me with his mom, and another kid running around like a twit, and threatening every moment to crash into my stroller, waking up my kid, and then me engaging into a fist fight with his Dad, who is just sitting reading a magazine while his kid runs havoc. So here’s my life now.
Anyway, back in the days, I can’t possibly remember much about the courses anymore. However, just as I was cleaning my room last week, I happened upon the score cards I collected back then, and on those score cards, I managed to write the ratings down as I felt when I was playing. So I’ll just compile it into a table here.
I think overall, it was quite a good trip for me. Chiangmai had one thing going for it no matter where you play: great weather. The caddies are a little over-rated. They are not too good, and less friendly to Malaysians than to Ang-Mohs. I think because they know we don’t give them nice tips compared to the Ang-Mohs. Please remember that our currency is now slightly lower valued than my kid’s diaper. After he does his number 2.
Alpine Golf Resort
I remember not playing particularly well in the first course, Alpine, even though I started with a par. It was a pretty looking course, reminded me a little of Amverton. Although they called it Alpine, it wasn’t a mountain course at all…it was just played in a valley with mountains surrounding it. A little flat, if I remember correctly, but quite long. I was carrying a hopeless hook into the game, and the no buggy concept didn’t help me much either. I did managed a birdie on the 17th (I teed off back nine) after a horrible triple-triple-double-triple in the past four holes. I thought I turned the corner, but the back nine was just horrendous. I went bogey free…and that didn’t mean in a good way.
Chiangmai Highlands Golf and Spa Resort (Muang Kaew Golf)
The second game we played was this course called Chiangmai highlands. I would say it bears resemblance to Tasik Puteri 3rd nine, or the Bangi 3rd nine, which generally means it’s not that nice. This was more of a mountain kind of course, but not as narrow as Bukit tinggi. The aesthetics wasn’t that pretty, it was quite sparse for most of the course and the maintenance was poor, with lots of casual water and very damp. The marshal was also rushing us, and the caddies were extremely grumpy. I played a lot better, and even birdied my 3rd hole and went out with a 43. Again, back nine struggles condemned me to a mediocre score, but I enjoyed this a lot more than the first course.
Summit Green Valley Chiangmai Country Club
Summit Green Valley was the third course, and this played more like a municipal course, located nearer to the city. It was like Glenmarie Gardens in some aspect, with very pretty landscaping and a nice, not so long course for good scores. The condition wasn’t that superb though…I recall hole 1 wasn’t very well maintain, and the fairway was cowgrass with a little bit of bare patches. No 9 hole was nice. I don’t know why, I just wrote it down on the card, now I don’t remember anymore. For the rough, there was hardly any rough…the cut was like the fairway, so for inaccurate piss drivers like myself, we should do ok here. Which for some reason, I also didn’t do that well. I started with a par-birdie to set up what could be a promising day, but like the past two days, the back nine was just horrible. I don’t know why I play back nines like crap. The 3 courses combined for +17, +13 and +15, while my front nine +14, +7, +8 was 16 strokes better, which is average 5 strokes better for each course. What the crap!!
Anyways, for those who are going Chiang Mai, I’d recommend Summit and Alpine. Alpine I feel is over-rated in terms of pricing but it’s ok. Chiangmai Highlands, I’d say give it a miss. The trip there is not worth it, as you have to travel as far as Alpine. And the service there sucks.
I guess the only good take-away of the whole trip was that I birdied once in each of the course, which is a big deal for a player of my meager talents.