Initially built by a Japanese developer in the 1980s, the Royal Pines Resort on Queensland's Gold Coast was transformed when purchased by the RACV Motor Group in the 2000s. Converting 36 holes into 27, the company engaged Graham Marsh to redesign a tournament course that could be used for the Australian PGA Championship and other events.
The Marsh redesign cost in the vicinity of $10 million and opened to mixed reviews in time for the 2015 Australian PGA Championship. The course has been toughened with tighter driving lines, water regularly in play and small green quadrants falling away sharply in places and providing difficult recovery options. Although some of the severity has been softened since opening, unfortunately the Graham Marsh design seems to have won few new fans and appears better recommended as a tournament venue than a place to enjoy fun, stimulating social golf.
We look forward to providing a full review on Planet Golf in the near future.