The Emirates seems to be around the oldest construction of any kind in Dubai and like so much else there, just oozes money. The Clubhouse is certainly one of the most opulent I’ve seen with its giant Bedouin tent appearance. Inside the service is excellent and as you wander around the locker room you can see lockers of past captains shared with the former champions of the Desert Classic. The course was manicured to perfection being just a day after the ladies masters had finished, really faultless on that count. The Greens were slick but having never putted on grainy greens before I was totally dumbfounded by a few breaks and struggled badly on them. The thing about the course is that there are so many doglegs, you have to shape your shots well to score well here. Highlights for me were playing the holes we see so much of on TV such as the lovely 9th and 18th to the huge double green. Likewise, going for the green on 16 and ending up in the rubbish on the right (like a few of the pros seem to do!) brought a wry smile. Even dropped the ball next to the Colin Montgomery plaque on the 18th fairway in a horrific attempt to emulate his shot of the year! Overall I would say that it’s a fine course, and a must play if you are in the area but for me the course didn’t have the wow factor that a top 100 course should have.
Date: January 16, 2012