Opened in 2016, the par 73 championship course at Dalat 1200 Country Club and Private Estate was designed by architect Peter Roussea and former Burmese pro Kyi Hla Han, who is now the executive chairman of the Asian Tour.
The Dalat at 1200 Golf Course is part of a development that will eventually yield a number of hotels, residences, different sporting facilities, and a wonderful golf course. While the original 9 holes has been in play for a decade, the second nine is only just maturing after being introduced just a few years ago.
The whole estate is located just 15 minutes from Dalat airport in a couple of mountain valleys with lake views. At times it reminds one of Switzerland rather than Central Vietnam!
Whilst Peter Rousseau, and Kyi Hua Han are credited with the design of the two nines, local legend Grahame Harris has been the constant throughout the development and must take some of the credit for bringing this amazing development to fruition…
In 2015 the newly finished course hosted the KLPGA, and with bent grass greens practical with the cooler mountain weather, the course presented beautifully.
The first 4 holes at 1200 are super dramatic. It is hard to imagine there are too many better opening sequences in the world of golf.
Elevated tees, rocky creeks, white splash bunkers, and some impressive green complexes make a suitable impression right from the start.
While the course does quiet down a little through the middle of the round, a variety of challenges await the golfer.
Notable holes include:
- the long strong downhill par 4 first hole with creek carry in front of the green
- the long plummeting par 5 second hole with a beautiful green complex just over the rocky creek, and MacKenzie like bunkering
- the mid length drop shot par 3 third hole. You climb so far to the tee, you start losing atmosphere, and the golf ball, if properly hit, has to make re entry!
- the longer downhill par 4 fourth with Augusta like bunkering, and more water and McKenzie bunkers to negotiate
- the par 5 seventh hole is also very impressive with old trees dominating the tee shot, and then a combination of strategically placed white splash bunkers, trees, and water directing traffic throughout the length of the hole
- hole 8 is also memorable with an elevated tee playing up to 186 yards to what is essentially an island green. Add a little wind, and it is a stiff challenge for anyone!
- hole 15 heads back up into the hills with another elevated tee, and a short, almost drivable par 4 where the tee shot begins well above the tree line
- Hole 16 is a short par 3, with an all water carry- there is little room for error
- Hole 17 is another dramatic par 5 in rarified air
The Dalat at 1200 is a spectacular course, and when the surrounding infrastructure is completed, and the hordes arrive, it will be a notable inclusion in Asia’s best courses.
The opening and closing 4 holes are set high on the slopes of two different valleys- these holes ensure your round will be memorable- but holes like 7 & 8 maintain the quality throughout the round.
Dalat at 1200 is located high in the central highlands, so it is important that you visit at the right time of year- and November to May are the preferred months. The weather here is generally more forgiving than other parts of Vietnam, and provides temperatures in the 20’s with lower humidity. But from late May until late October rain can be a factor…
Dalat @1200 provides dramatic, high quality golf backed up by solid strategies, and quality playing surfaces.
Get on board before the rest of the world!
Peter Wood is the founder of The Travelling Golfer – click the link to read his full review.