Known to the Chinese as the Kunming Yulongwan Golf Resort, this beautifully maintained golf course is set against a twisting lake that somewhat resembles the shape of a dragon. Yulong means dragon in Mandarin, and designer Lee Schmidt was able to use this natural feature nicely within his design. Indeed the pick of the holes are those pressed against the lake, such as the Peninsula par three across the water at the end of the round, and the preceding strong par four that initially crosses a wet ravine before dramatically hugging the steep lakeside cliff edge.
Earlier holes are undulating and nicely shaped with decent views of the surrounding hills and the odd glimpse of the natural water courses. The views are abundant here because the designer chose to route holes either straight uphill or downhill, in order to maximize the outlooks at the expense of a more coherent routing or better flow between the holes. Given most golfers will play in carts the decision does make some sense. The greens remind one of those preferred by the Nicklaus designers, as they feature lots of shoulders and flowing undulations, often tilted against the line of play to further complicate approach shots. The bunkering is also modernistic and plentiful. Traps are set nicely into the slopes, and make a strong aesthetic statement in most places.
With quality playing surfaces, a solid design, great practice facility and nicely integrated residential and resort amenities Yulong Bay is certain to prove popular with those looking for a decent golf club outside Kunming.
Planet Golf understands this golf course has been closed by the Chinese government.
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