Opened for play in 2009, the Fuego Maya golf course at La Reunion Antigua is a dazzling Perry Dye layout, one of several layouts that Pete Dye's son has built in Central America.
Set on the lower slopes of the Fuego Volcano, the course occupies a dramatic landscape where the next hole on the card appears even more stunning than the one just played.
The 5th is a right doglegged par four, routed uphill to a tight green and it’s rated the number one hole on the stroke index – though some regard the long par four 7th hole as an even tougher proposition, despite the fact that it plays downhill to a well-guarded green.
And if golfers think the front nine is tough, the degree of difficulty at Fuego Maya rises another notch or two on the back nine, where blind shots abound and elevation changes proliferate.
Two of the best holes on the inward half are found at the 13th and 16th, two mighty par fives where the former is protected by a lake in front of the green and the latter plays all of 682 yards from tee to green.
The signature hole arrives at the 159-yard 17th and it’s here that you’ll find a waterfall-flanked green positioned behind a pond – not quite a trademark Dye island green setting perhaps but a spectacular, water-enhanced par three nonetheless.
Sadly in June 2018, Volcán de Fuego erupted, killing nearly 200 people and totally devastating the Fuego Maya golf course at La Reunion. "It took me six years to build," said Perry Dye, "and it was gone in a day."
I visited this course to check it out when it first opened. I didn't play, but toured the course. It is a stunning layout with enormous scale, beauty and variety. The facilities are *****. Fabulous spot.
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