A perennial favourite for not just Singaporeans but other visitors in the region due to its proximity and accessibility is Bintan Lagoon Resort (BLR). Just a short ferry ride from Singapore, the resort is set on 300 hectares of beautiful beachfront. In July 2012 it launched its own direct ferry terminal and service which has proved very popular with golfers and guests.
In addition to two championship 18-hole golf courses, the resort has a range of outdoor and indoor sporting and lifestyle activities that should cater to everyone. These include two swimming pools and 30 water sports such as snorkelling, jet skiing and the banana boat which are available at the resort’s Sea Sports Centre. On land, there are over 20 activities such as tennis, archery, cycling and even all-terrain vehicle rides for the more adventurous.
The par-72 Ian Baker Finch (IBF) Woodlands golf course measures 6211 metres and is designed with the front nine holes snaking out from the resort and the back nine to the clubhouse. It has two signature holes including the elevated 526-metre par-5 8th hole tee. Stretching downhill into the distance before rising to the green, it demands absolute precision from golfers who must negotiate their shots past bunkers, a lake and a solitary tall tree. The other is the 13th hole, known as the ‘beauty and the beast’ where from its elevated tee you can enjoy the views of the seaside villas and ocean. Steep slopes and mounds surround many of the tees and the course includes tight fairways on rolling landscapes and a myriad of challenging greens with sand traps and flowing waterways.
The Jack Nicklaus-designed Sea View course is longer at 6443 metres and will appeal to golfers of all levels and playing abilities with its sculptured bunkers, strategic use of the natural landscape and some unique water hazards. Its par-4 13th has the distinction of being the most difficult and tricky hole on this course, with its unique feature of a split green where one of the streams on the course runs through the middle. The par-3 12th is an absolute beauty with a stunning backdrop of the South China Sea. Due to the high winds at certain times, club selection can be increased by at least four clubs, especially from the championship tees. The finishing hole is tough as it is characterized by large bunkers and rolling mounds. At the golf club there is a clubhouse, pro-shop, driviing range, practice putting greens and restaurant.
The resort accommodation consists of 470 rooms, suites and villas – the rooms were part of a large upgrading project which started in 2011. There are also 12 wining and dining options spread out over the resort – which has complimentary wifi throughout – as well as a number of meeting and function rooms.