Situated less than an hour’s drive north of downtown Perth, the coastal suburb of Yanchep, which originally operated as a sheep station, was earmarked for development in the early 1970s by businessman Alan Bond, who had grand designs on establishing a future satellite city for a quarter of a million people.
Sun City Country Club was formed as a sporting amenity for these future residents, with Bob Green and Murray Dawson, the inaugural Club Captain, setting out the course. Fifteen months after construction started, the first rounds of golf were played on the new layout in the summer of 1974.
In 2012, a five-year program to redevelop the course was undertaken in partnership with the owners of the neighbouring Yanchep Golf Estate, with Mike Clayton’s design company working to a new course master plan that was intended to provide a more challenging playing experience for golfers.
Three replacement holes were brought into use at the start of the upgrade process, meaning there was no disruption to 18-hole play during an entire works program that involved realigning holes, resizing greens, installing new bunkers and removing doglegged holes such as the old 2nd, which is now a new short par four.
This course on the outer northern edge of the city of Perth was a real surprise: of the good kind! Sun City felt rural but suburban and polished at the same time and currently strikes a well balanced mix. As more houses fill in the edges of the course I'm concerned that some of the rural character will be lost. However, in return for selling land for development, the course makeover is delivering some spectacular new and remodelled holes. The turn at the far point of the course through holes 13, 14 and 15 was the high point, with a delightful blend of par 3 , 5 and 4 played over a slight elevation change, using angles, waste areas and bunkering to create a visual and challenging local version of amen corner.
Plenty of wildlife around the course and reasonable green fees. Being on the front page for best in state rankings seems appropriate for Sun City.
The view onto the course from the practice green is incredible, the green fairways give way to the bushland in the distance. Kangaroos skip around (though much less than there used to be). This course was designed for TV, big open fairways, large, fast greens and massive bunkers. Having played this course twice in the past month I struggle to pick out a signature hole, this is because they are all good, so none stand out as the pick of the bunch.
The 10th is a great par four water on the left and houses on the right a decent drive will allow you to get onto the green in two as long as steer clear of the bunkers. There is also the made of television par five 15th which has well placed bunkers to catch even the best golfers. But for me it was the par four 2nd, up hill, with the right wind the green becomes drivable, though you do this at your own risk as anything off line or short will end up sitting in the sand.
An impressive course that you will want to return to, it is worth the drive as even if your golf isn't up to scratch the little joeys bouncing around make a great insta-worthy picture!
When I played Sun City, they were still doing course works, but for the most part the course was looking very sharp thanks to the team at OCCM.
The fairways and greens were in good condition considering it was the middle of the summer.
Good use of bunkering occurs throughout, especially on the OCCM influenced holes on the back nine, water also plays a crucial role into your thinking, as it is in play on several holes.
Ancient Tuart Trees and an abundance of wildlife including Kangaroo and Emus dot the landscape here at Sun City, a fun course, but good enough to test the best.
I really enjoyed the back 9 here, and once the front 9 is remodelled I can only see this course heading up the rankings in Australia.