Designed by Gary Player’s company, and first opened for play in 2009, the Mazagan Golf Resort is situated along an Atlantic beachfront near the UNESCO World-heritage listed port town of El Jadida. The resort facility includes a stunning 500 room 5-star hotel, health spa, casino and associated tourism attractions. For golfers, the primary reason to visit Mazagan is its charming Gary Player signature design, a course of genuine quality and rare understatement.
Though outrageously long from the back (Black) tees, from the Gold plates Mazagan is more than manageable and features an interesting routing that twice loops back toward the main beach dunes. Holes played toward the Sea are lovely, as are those that run adjacent the water and with the sound of the waves crashing in your ears.
Among the standout holes away from the shore are the mid-length 10th with its fantastic bunkerless, bowl-shaped green site and parallel short par fours at the 6th and 12th. The 6th is particularly fun from the regular tees, where your decision becomes whether to press for an easy pitch by taking on drive bunkers off the tee or to lay back and leave your hard shot for second. From the Black Tees the hole plays completely differently, and is far less strategic.
The par five 7th is a subtle gem that plays up and over a crest toward the Ocean, and a green in a much simpler state than you typically find on Player designs. We were also fond of the closing run, the 14th is a long slog but the next four are near the water and notable for their subtle green contours and strategic bunkering.
Without doubt, however, the greatest attraction at Mazagan is the fairway contouring. Holes across the course crash and fall with delightful irregularity and with genuine links characteristics. There are uphill, downhill and sidehill lies and plenty of holes that appear to encourage balls to be fed off slopes and onto green sites. If the turf were able to be maintained in firm and fast condition it would be tremendously fun to play – off the Gold Tees (or forward).
An hour from Casablanca and with its array of 5-star amenities and attractions, Mazagan is recommended for golfers planning to visit Morocco, and ideal as either a base for a few days or to add as a side trip to a Marrakech or Agadir golf holiday.