IMG and Monty build Vietnamese links


Sean Dudley
By Sean Dudley

Course construction is well underway here amid the tropical dunescape of Vietnam's fastest growing resort destination, where a Colin Montgomerie signature design will soon stand as the area's first 18-hole layout.

Located close to Da Nang's international airport, The Montgomerie Links Vietnam has been routed to capitalise on its close proximity to both the warm, tranquil South China Sea and the striking Marble Mountains, which are clearly visible from various points on the course.

Developers Danao International say that the site, which features casuarina pines and scruffy dunes, will be the venue for Vietnam's first true links experience. The front nine opens for play next summer.

"The land is absolutely spectacular," said Jeff Puchalski, vice president of golf operations for Danao International. "Hoi An is known for being a UNESCO World Heritage site but what people don't know is that it has an amazing beachscape, which makes the perfect palette for a links style course. I believe it will give everyone who plays it the feeling of being in Ireland or Scotland – without the cold temperatures you find in the British Isles. It's got the terrain golf purists dream about." The developers say the course's only departure from tradition comes in the form of several lakes and streams, a must given the region's seasonably high water table.

"Players will be amazed and, I believe, impressed with how we have routed this collection of holes through an incredibly natural formation of dunes and seaside vegetation," said Montgomerie. "This is as close as you can get to true links golf in Vietnam. It will be a treat to experience." IMG is providing the design team, and managing course construction. IMG, also Montgomerie's agent, is best known in Vietnam for its designs at Ocean Dunes, Dalat Palace and the newly-opened Tam Dao, just north of Hanoi.