Unveiled at the end of 2015, the 18-hole layout at Al Zorah Golf Club was the first golf course to open for play in the United Arab Emirates for more than six years. Exactly two years to the day after construction started, the Ruler of Ajman, Sheikh Humaid Bin Rashid Al Nuaima, officially opened the Nicklaus Design course.
Holes are laid out inside a natural mangrove landscape, with 1.5 kilometres of boardwalks installed to cope with the rising and falling water levels at some of the tidal-affected fairways. If the tide’s out and your ball strays into a “mangrove recess” then you may well be able to manage a recovery shot from the wet sand.A couple of lakes also feature during the round, most notably at the par three 15th hole, though the toughest sequence of holes is found at the start of the back nine, where the par five 11th is rated stoke index 1 for good reason – there may be a lack of greenside bunkers on this hole but water threatens all the way from tee to green down the left side of the fairway.
This is a great golf course and has a different feel to others in the region. It is also great value as it is an hours drive our of Dubai so gets less traffic. Interesting layout with water everywhere, and was in magnificent shape when I played it in September. There is something visually alluring about every hole, and it almost feels linksy, certainly compared to the other top courses in the middle east (Yas aside). Well worth the drive and would highly recommend it.