Prepared by Harold Stephens
Travel Correspondent for Thai Airways
Three weeks ago I wrote that Royal Orchid Holidays has published its four latest travel booklets: DISCOVER THAILAND 2011-2012, DISCOVER THE WORLD 2011-2012, DISCOVER FAMILY GETAWAYS 2011-2012 and DISCOVER GOLF IN THAILAND & CHINA 2011-2012.
Last week I covered Family Getaway; this week I will tell readers about the last booklet in the series, Golfing in Thailand and China. As a reminder, these publications are free and now available at THAI ticketing offices around the world.
GOLF IN THAILAND & China 2011-2012 is the guide to all guides on golfing in Thailand and China. It’s comprehensive with everything you need to know about the sport, including a list of recommended golf courses in Bangkok, Khao Yai, Hua Hin/Cha-Am, Pattaya, Chiang Mai and Phuket and two destinations un China, Kunming and Shenzhen/Dongguan. These publications are free and now available at THAI ticketing offices around the world.
TEE IT UP IN THAILAND
The Kingdom is the perfect place to play golf, either while on vacation with your family or on a golf trip with a group of friends. 365 days a year you'll find sunshine, spectacular scenery, great food and wonderful entertainment.
What's more, with many of the best courses located close to major tourist destinations, you can hit the fairways while your family hit the beaches, the sights and the shopping.
Royal Orchid Holidays will take care of all the arrangements and put you on course for a memorable holiday.
Thailand has some of the most beautiful and challenging courses in Asia, designed by such greats as Jack Nicklaus,
Robert Trent Jones Jr, and Greg Norman. Undulating fairways, blind shots, large bunkers and elevated greens are just some of the obstacles you have to look forward to. Clubhouses are well-designed with first class changing rooms, restaurants and bars. And you don't even need to bring your own equipment, you can hire clubs, shoes, umbrellas and, of course, golf carts.
With courses on the outskirts of major holiday destinations, there's plenty for your family to enjoy while you're taming the greens. Bangkok has wonderful sightseeing, shopping and spas. Hua Hin, Pattaya and Phuket are perfect for daytime fun on the beach. And Chiang Mai offers the adventure of elephant trekking in the hills and visits to colourful hilltribes. In the evening, wherever you are, you can enjoy fine dining and first class entertainment.
GOLFING IN CHINA
Royal Orchid Holidays offers two excellent golf vacation destinations in Southern China: Kunming and Shenzhen/Dongguan. The weather in both is perfect for good and sightseeing, being in the mid 20s centigrade for most of the year. Courses here offer everything that makes the game of golf so challenging: stunning water hazards, strategically placed bunkers, undulating fairways and well-protected greens. To class golfers and architect designed many of the courses and all are well managed and maintained.
Royal Orchid Holidays will take care of all the arrangements for you. All you have to decide is where in the Kingdom and China you want to go, and which of the courses in this brochure matches your skill levels. Then leave the rest to us. From booking your accommodation and reserving your tee times to even arranging transportation to the greens, we have it covered.
GREAT GOLF TRIPS START HERE
Whatever type of course you prefer, whatever your skill level, however long you plan to stay, you'll find everything you need for great golf, and a great vacation, right here.
OUTSTANDING CHALLENGES IN APPEALING LOCATIONS
While your family chooses from the Kingdom's endless possibilities for relaxation and entertainment, you can choose a course that matches your game. If you're a low handicapper and want a challenge, tee it up like Tiger at the testing Blue Canyon Country Club in Phuket or the Thai Country Club outside
Bangkok. If you're a high handicapper, the beautiful vistas and less demanding fairways of Pattaya Country Club and the Royal Chiang Mai Golf Resort could be more to your liking. Or, you could be one of the first to play some wonderful new courses: The Banyan in Hua Hin or Gassan in Chiang Mai for instance. In China you have here destinations, all with sprint-like weather all year long. And remember, every course, whether Thailand of China, has caddies, so you'll have someone to guide you round and read your putts, not to mention make the whole day great fun.
A COMPLETE TOUR PACKAGE
Royal Orchid Holidays will handle all the arrangements, so you get to the first tee relaxed and ready to hit the perfect drive. Here's what is included in every full package featured in this brochure:
• Your choice of accommodation, inclusive of a full American breakfast.
• A minimum of 18 holes of golf at your chosen course(s).
• Guaranteed tee times.
• Green and caddy fees (or twin-sharing buggy).
• Airport/hotel/golf course transfers, where applicable.
• Your choice of day on which to play. Most tours operate daily, but please be aware there are a few exceptions.
Note: If you don't have your own equipment, you can rent clubs, shoes and golf umbrellas at most courses.
OR GOLF BY THE DAY
If want to spend as much time as possible with your family, but still get in a round of golf or two, you can take advantage of Royal Orchid Holidays single day packages. Each one includes a reserved tee time, green and caddy fees, and 18 holes of golf. We can also arrange transport to and from the course, should you need it.
Note: while most tours operate on a daily basis, there are a few exceptions.
Royal Orchid Holidays arranges for golf tours in six destinations around the Kingdom. Listed her are the destination with the gold courses in each destination.
Alpine Golf & Sports Club
Bangkok Golf Club
Green Valley Country Club
Lakewood Country Club
Lam Luk Ka Country Club
Muang Kaew Golf Course
Rose Garden Golf Club
Thai Country Club
Thana City Golf Course
The Legacy Golf Club
The Royal Gems Golf and Sports Club
Kirimaya Golf Resort Spa
Banyan Golf & Spa Resort
Imperial Lake View & Golf Club
Palm Hills Golf Resort & Country Club
Springfield Village Golf & Spa
Burapha Golf Club
Khao Kheow Country Club
Laem Chabang International Country Club
Pattaya Golf Resort & Sport Club
Pattaya Country Club
Plutaluang Golf Club
Siam Country Club Pattaya, Old Course
Siam Country Club Pattaya, Plantation
Alpine Golf Resort
Chiang Mai Highlands Golf & Spa Resort
Gassan Lake City Golf & Resort
Gassan Khuntan Golf & Resort
Royal Chiang Mai Golf Resort
Summit Green Valley Chiang Mai Golf Club
Blue Canyon Country Club
Laguna Phuket Golf Club
Loch Palm Golf Club
Mission Hills Phuket
Phuket Country Club
Red Mountain Golf Club
Kunming, Spring City & Lake Resort
Shenzhen, Mission Hills Country Club
Dongguan, Hill View Golf Course and Long Island Country Club
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
Q. Dear Mr. Stephens. My husband and I are planning a trip to Thailand and when he asked what I wanted to buy I said a Siamese cat. He laughed and said there are no such cats and that’s it’s only a name, like French fries. Do you know if he might be right? By the way, I do enjoy reading your stories each week. Beatrice Rice, Orlando, Florida
A. Dear Mrs. Rice. You may tell your husband that Siamese cats are real, and truly a product of Thailand. I have been told they are known for their air of aloofness, brilliant blue eyes, regal bearing, and sharply contrasting colors. Siamese cats make delightful pets, being fastidiously clean, extremely intelligent, and affectionate. The first official reference to the Siamese species occurred in five poems discovered in 1830, but dating back to the days of Ayutthaya. You might want to take your husband to the Rattanakosin Room at the Na¬tional Museum. The nicely illustrated Samut Thai book is on display there. I wanted to take a photo for you but cameras are not permitted. I did check with a Thai friend who has several Siamese cats. She claims they are born pure white, but display their variegated coloration within the first month. She also insists that their movements are graceful like Siamese classical dancers, and that they are born Bud¬dhist and never convert to another religion. There are pet shops around Bangkok that sell Siamese cats, if you are interested, but don’t tell your husband I told you. —HS
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Note: The article is the personal view of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the view of Thai Airways International Public Company Limited.