The Greg Norman-designed course at the Grand Golf Club started out as an 18-hole layout for the Gilston Golf Club in 1990 but its Japanese owners had spent so much on construction that, within days of opening, the course was closed due to a severe and ultimately terminal cash flow problem.
And so, incredibly, this sleeping beauty lay dormant for the next six years until a consortium of Gold Coast businessmen – in the shape of Grand Investments Australia Limited – purchased the site and embarked on the refurbishment of a course that had literally gone to seed.
Greg Norman’s design company was approached again to reshape and rework everything from tees, fairways and bunkers to greens with the result that eighteen months later, in October 1997, the Grand was formally re-opened as a private members course – talk about a phoenix rising from the ashes!
Within a further four years, the rebirth of the course was complete when the Grand Golf Club hosted the 2001 Australian Open. Now imagine scripting that as a golf story ten years before – you would have been laughed at for dreaming up such an extraordinary tale!
The toughest hole on the outward half is the 452-yard, par four, 9th which plays from an elevated tee to a narrow fairway with sand left and a large tree right of the landing area. Water protects the front and there are two large bunkers at the back of the largest putting surface on the course.
The 413-yard, par four, 13th on the back nine is split in two by a fairway bunker. Trees must also be negotiated further along in the middle of the fairway before it doglegs slightly right to a tricky green where a four on the card is an excellent score.
This is a private club and to play here you need to play with a member, I was lucky enough to get a game many years ago, and thought the course was fabulous. Firstly driving into the car park I thought I was in a different planet as my car was new and cost about $20k every car in the place must have been over $100k so I thought you needed money to be a member here.
Getting back to the golf course, some outstanding holes very great scenery, and excellent club house.
When I played the member paid for everything.
It was a pleasure to play there and hopefully one day I get the chance again
The course itself provides a tough challenge for all types of golfer, great usage of natural land makes you think the course has been there forever. Plenty to think about with many water carries / hazards lurking as well as the excellent bunkering around the greens and on the fairways themselves.
Word's can't describe the day I had at The Grand Golf Club on the Gold Coast.
Many thanks to LJ, her son and daughter, as well as our other playing partner R.
The hospitality shown today from the J family is a credit to yourself L and your family. I will always cherish the day you provided, on my journey to play Australia's Top 100 golf courses.
All member's were very welcoming as well as the pro shop and clubhouse staff.
Looking forward to seeing the course again this year hopefully with LJ.
After playing just five holes with DJ then President of the Club, I said to him & his wife as I looked back the fairway - “what a great course already, I would love to play that hole again” on which Desleigh remarked “of course Jamesie you can join (and play it as many times as you like)”. I signed on the dotted line at the 19th with playing partner Dick Bearham and also secured a ‘no bar bills’ clause to match my score of THIRTY THREEEE Stableford points. My introduction to the course was superb and the rest as they say is...
This is a private members course so I expect one will not get many reviews on here, as the Members are a happy lot! As the only member residing far away in Ireland, the greens staff must appreciate me more than any other member, as the number of divots & plug mark I have made have been few.
One of best signs of a good golf course for me is, how many holes you can easily remember after a long absence of playing the course, and I can easily recall the entire 18 holes having only played The Grand a few times in the last 16 years.
Get to know a local member in Surfers Paradise and they may invite you for a game, or better again JOIN THE CLUB!