The Doral Golf Resort and Spa is a full service resort facility. It has newly renovated guest rooms, great restaurants, spa facilities and of course, great golf. The facility is known for the “TPC Blue Monster” as it hosts the WGC Cadillac Championship. The WGC event was held the prior week so the course was still in championship form, the grandstands were still in place and it felt like a tour event. So, it was cool to play the course under those conditions.
TPC Blue Monster –We played the TPC Blue Monster out of the gate on day one. We would have preferred to get a round in before tackling the Blue but tee times did not allow it. As you would expect from a PGA site, it was a great golf course. We played the blue tees which stretched the course to 6701 yards. A forecaddie is required to play the Blue Monster so do not be surprised when they show up on the first tee. With the constant winds that blew the Blue was a tough test after a few months away from the game. There is a great variety of holes on the course and the par threes are quite difficult. Most holes have sand and water or both, so take plenty of balls before tackling the Blue. The golf course has very thick, coarse Bermuda rough throughout. So, you get some very difficult lies off the fairways and around the greens. Finally, it is quite a sight to stand on the 18th tee and look down the fairway. With water all along the left side of the hole it is quite a challenge. I managed to make par on 18 so that was a quite a thrill.
McLean Signature Course- We played the McLean Course on day two. The course stretches 6602 yards from the blue tees and is quite tight in spots. The McLean Course is completely different that the Blue Monster or Great White. It is a more traditional golf course that sets in and around homes. It has the feel of a Golf Course Community but is still a great golf course. The course is known for its “Bermuda Triangle” holes 13 through 15. It was my least favorite of all three courses but I would still recommend playing it.
The Great White- We played The Great White Course on the final day and for many of us it was our favorite. It is a Greg Norman design and is a unique course in two ways. First, there is no rough on the golf course. Second, The Great White Course is the only golf course of its kind in the Southeastern United States that utilizes coquina – crushed shells. So, if you miss the fairway you find yourself in these shells quite a bit. The shells make up large waste areas all over the course and they offer compact, tight lies. The course has a desert feel and a large number of King Palm Trees lining many of the fairways. I have never played golf in the Middle East but it has that look and feel. We found the golf course quite difficult and it was pretty wind the day we played. Our forecaddie told us that the course is not usually that windy. So, needless to say it was a difficult day but a lot of fun.