Located along the NSW coastline, an hour and a half north of Sydney, Magenta Shores was designed by architect Ross Watson and built upon a barren expanse of sand in a town called the Entrance. The course is essentially a man-made dune course, with Watson's shaping and the incorporation of rolling undulation onto the flat property the real highlight. These aren't the highest or most impressive artificial dune structures in golf, but they do appear natural and create some fun golfing challenges.
The biggest issue with Magenta Shores is the surrounding estate, which intrudes too far into the course and forced Watson to create fairways and playing corridors that are tighter than is ideal. On such an exposed and windy site some of the tee shots are far too demanding. Others don't like the bunkering, but the use of fescues in the faces of the traps, while brutal at times, is in keeping with the nature of the test and the look of the terrain. The green shaping is mostly believable and the par threes, in particular, are attractive.
Ross Watson waited a long time for the opportunity to build a course in sand, and Magenta Shores shows he is a man who knows how to create nice looking golf holes. Most players will enjoy a round here, it doesn't have world-class holes but there aren't many black spots and the standard of golf is quite high across both nines. Magenta is clearly Watson's best course, with a more sympathetic client, however, this could have been even better.