Nine Bridges - South Korea

The Club at Nine Bridges,
South Jeju-gun,
Jeju Island,
South Korea

  • +82 64 793 9999

  • Myeong-Hun. An.

  • Golfplan

  • Not known

The Club at Nine Bridges is located on Jeju Island, the volcanic island south of South Korea’s continental landmass sometimes referred to as Korea’s Maui. The club, which was developed by the CJ Group, offers only limited access to non-members. As the membership is restricted and largely Seoul based, golf here is a very sedate affair compared with the cheek-by-jowl experience around the capital.

The course was designed by Golf Plan whose two principles are Ronald Fream and David Dale. As befits a golf design firm led by a horticulturalist, the visual presentation and aesthetics of the course are excellent. The public relations releases talk about how the designers have sought to create a Scottish Highlands course and, for once, this is not mere hyperbole. The manicuring and finishing is of an order of perfection you are not liable to find in Scotland so, in truth, it more resembles an American course in a Scottish atmosphere. And this part of Jeju Island does indeed resemble Perthshire. The two nines have been laid out on a very generous allocation of land that wanders through pine-clad rolling land in the lee of Mount Halla, at 6,000 feet South Korea’s tallest mountain.

In all, there are eight bridges built on the course, the ninth of the Club’s name is metaphorical; that which connects the club to its members and guests. Nine Bridges, completed in 2001, is that rare combination of a great golf course in a stunning setting. There’s no mistaking the purpose here. It has been designed to be a championship course on a large scale. And by dint of its stunning location, excellent design, bent grass fairways, tees and greens and pristine conditioning, it succeeds.

The above is a brief edited extract from The Finest Golf Courses of Asia & Australasia by James Spence. Reproduced with kind permission.

The following article was written by Hwa Young, our Korean Correspondent and Chief Editor at Herald Sports.

Nine Bridges is a private golf club that features perhaps the finest course in Korea. The experience at Nine Bridges is based on the spirit of “Only One” the Management Philosophy of the CJ Group. Nine Bridges has been the standard for golf in Korea since opening 2001. The course is set in natural surrounding under the gaze of Mt Halla at an attitude of 600 meters. The biggest strength of Nine Bridges is that it is a nature friendly course where any disruption to nature was minimised even from the initial development. Ronald Fream and David Dale designed the course.

Nine Bridges has good conditioned facilities and top quality service, where cottages, a villa, swimming pool, Spa and multiple complexes ensure a good after round experience.

Nine Bridges hosted the LPGA four times from 2002 to 2005. It was first club to host the LPGA in Korea. In addition, The Club is also host to the World Club Championship which was established in 2002 to foster the growth of amateur golf and to form a special bond between the World’s Prestigious Clubs. The World Club Championship (WCC) is now recognised as the premier amateur club tournament in the world and is sanctioned by the R&A and the USGA.

The Club at Nine Bridges is an historic Korean golf club and has truly become the representative club in Korea.

In 2016, the PGA Tour and the Seoul-based CJ Group announced a 10-year agreement to host a PGA Tour event in South Korea. The inaugural CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges was staged in October 2017, resulting in a playoff win for American Justin Thomas over Australia’s Marc Leishman.

Architect David Dale watched the 2018 CJ Cup from the sleek, modernist teahouse behind the 14th green and commented as follows: “South Korean designs must, according to local custom, feature teahouses in the middle of each nine. We spent months routing and rerouting that stretch of the back nine at Nine Bridges to create the perfect perch for that teahouse. We did the same on the homeward stretch to create dramatic views of Mt. Halla, which is sacred to the Korean people."

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Description: The Club at Nine Bridges is located on Jeju Island, the volcanic island south of South Korea’s continental landmass sometimes referred to as Korea’s Maui. Rating: 8 out of 10 Reviews: 2
Kimi Hoshiyama

The Golf Club at Nine Bridges is a hillside course that consists of strategically placed trees, valleys, ponds, creeks and bunkers. The course has a variety of doglegs, up and down hills, and a mix of short and long par three, fours, and fives. Moreover, the course’s well designed routing will allow players to enjoy their play with a good rhythm and flow. Players will also be impressed by the astonishing and picturesque views at places such as the 4th hole’s green, skyline at the 8th hole’s, and the view from the Nine Bridges Golf Course - Photo by reviewer 10th, 13th, and 18th hole of the highest mountain of Korea, the 1950-meter tall Mt. Halla. The greens generally have moderate undulations, allowing for smooth putting. The bent grasses are not only used on the greens but also on the fairways, making the course aesthetically pleasing.

The 414-yard par four 4th is a demanding hole with a sharp dogleg to the left. An ideal location to aim towards is to the right side of the left corner large fairway bunker. The second shot will require the ball to be hit over thick brush in order to reach the green. The view during this second shot can be quite picturesque, especially during the autumn season. The long and narrow green is surrounded by three bunkers, a series of trees, and a creek that runs along the right side of the green. The par 5 551-yard 18th is a signature hole that consists of a dogleg that bends to the left. If long hitters hit over 280 yards off the tee, the ball will continue roll downhill. This will not only let players gain additional distance, but also will help them avoid the two fairway bunkers on the left, allowing long hitters to reach the green in two shots. Regular players will end up hitting a downhill second shot, and an island green shot on the third. The strong and complicated undulations of the green will make putting difficult on this final hole. To read more about the Nine Bridges, click here to visit my website.

June 06, 2017
10 / 10
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David Davis

Recently I had the opportunity to visit Jeju Island to visit Nine Bridges which has been rated as a world top 100 course by various US publications.

Nine Bridges is a private members only course and a sort of mountain resort. The facility is extremely impressive, service impeccable and the food is fantastic. It’s ticks all the boxes a very high end members club would expect and more given their love of ultra luxurious and enormous club houses in Korea. The accommodations are superb and among the nicest I’ve seen at a golf club, right down to the Japanese computer operated toilets with a host of buttons you might not dare to try.

Nine Bridges Golf Course - Photo by reviewer

The golf course can best be described as a high end parkland course. It could easily be situated in the US and is maintained to the same high standard as would be expected from a US private parkland course.

My favorite holes were #4 and #8 and the Creek Course. #4 is a tricky par 4 with a 90 degree dogleg to the left. A solid driver or 3 wood as close as possible to the left hand side will afford a nice view and the shortest approach to an very tough raised green with a narrow section in the front which is guarded with a huge deep bunker left and a fall off into an out of bounds area where a stream runs through and many huge boulders and a few large trees reside. After two plays on this hole with perfect drives I just couldn’t manage to get the approach right even with a 7 and 8 iron respectively in my hand.

The 8th hole is a short par 4 (318 meters from the back tees) playing slightly uphill with an amazing skyline green. It’s protected on the left and right by some pot bunkers and shaped a bit like a pear. There is a significant slope from back to front and two tiers. Approach long and good luck bringing home a 2 putt.Nine Bridges Golf Course - Photo by reviewer

On the Highland course my favorite hole is their signature hole the par 5 18th. It’s highlights are a choice of two fairways. Lower left fairway which is riskier and allows the possibility to go for it in two. The right fairway is easier and safer but requires a lay up on the second shot short of the water. The green is an island green and the approach is a real test.

I really enjoyed Nine Bridges, though personally I would rate the amenities as far more impressive than the course. The caddies are very good, extremely professional and all are women. Ours spoke excellent English and really knew her stuff. I had some good fun with the remote controlled buggies that remain on the cart paths and basically serve as an aid for the caddies so they don’t have to carry the clubs. It’s an interesting system and I think it works pretty well for walkers though their culture is to ride for the most part. We walked.

I would certainly return and recommend a visit if you ever get the chance. It’s a very nice high-end members club with a solid parkland golf course.

May 03, 2016
6 / 10
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