The Chiang Rai Robert Trent Jones Jr. designed Santiburi Country Club is laid out
over vast fields with excellent placement of holes and an abundance of water hazards
and bunkers. The golf course is widely regarded as one of the best conceived and
maintained golf courses in Asia. Golfers living in Thailand will tell you that Santiburi
in Chiang Mai is one of their favourite golf courses in Thailand, and this is no
small compliment! Santiburi Country Club was the first Chiang Rai golf course.
The golf course is world class, yet it is playable and enjoyable for golfers on every
skill level. Set into the contours of a valley, it offers a superbly landscaped golf
course that winds beneath a canopy of magnificent shade trees, across crystal clear
lakes and streams, reflecting turquoise skies and pearl white clouds above, and the
lush green foothills and mountains of Chiang Rai in the distance.
Santiburi Chiang Rai Country Club features some exciting holes with undulating fairways
and perfectly rolling fast greens. Four different tees offer every level of golfer
a fair chance. 11 par 4’s and long fairways make Santiburi challenging for all golfers.
Most of the holes are characterized by rolling greens guarded by countless sand and
grass bunkers, trees and huge water hazards. Designed to maximize the risk and reward,
there are varied options for many of the par 4 and 5 giving conservation approaches
for the novice and challenging hazards for the more experienced golfers.
The course weaves its way around natural rolling hills and lakes, with first nine
holes taking a down and uphill course. The back nine holes sweep through steep valleys
and a chain of three lakes.
The Santiburi fairways have a wide range of sloping lies, are long, and are lined
with natural hazards. At holes 2, 3 and 4, you have to play alongside a huge lake
which ruins the length of the holes. Most greens are protected by bunkers and there
are several good dog leg holes. The par-five 18th finishing hole is particularly
impressive, where you have to negotiate water on the left side from the tee short
and again on the right side of the fairway on the approach short.
The course is kept in excellent condition year round, as the owners continue to invest
in good maintenance practices. It is owned by the Singha Beer family. If you are
coming to Thailand, like to golf, and part of your time will be spent in Chiang Rai,
then you should really make time to play this course.
Full facilities including a spa and chalet style resort makes this course a must
while in Chiang Rai. The beautiful and full functional club house dominates the highest
point of the club area and is first class in every way, including clean locker rooms,
a well stocked pro shop, and a very nice restaurant serving a range of local and
international dishes, and of course cold Singha beer!