Hilltop Valley Golf Club in Hoa Binh, Vietnam, has opened a third nine designed by IMG.
The club’s first 18 holes, also designed by IMG, officially opened for play in September 2019. Work on holes 19-27 started in 2018 with construction completed in October 2020. Brit Stenson did the design work for IMG.
“It is an extremely hilly site with dramatic changes in elevation throughout the course, particularly on holes 10-27,” said Paul Burley, senior vice president, IMG Golf Course Services. “The front nine is flatter and plays through a river valley.
“Many holes are bordered by trees, thick vegetation, steep hills and water, with a minimal amount of rough. The course requires accuracy off the tee in order to avoid the trouble, and to set up an approach shot from an optimal position.”
The new nine measures 3,574 yards from the back tees, joining the existing 18 holes of 6,908 yards.
“The twenty-fourth hole is a terrific par five that plays along a ridgeline and has magnificent views across the property, particularly from the green complex,” said Burley. “With trouble on both sides of the fairway, this hole demands accuracy throughout. The big hitters could possibly reach the green in two, but it’s very risky given the trouble that awaits on either side of the hole and around the green complex.
“Hole 27 is a good finish to this nine and a birdie opportunity. It’s a downhill par four doglegging left, measuring 420 yards from the back tees, but plays much less given the elevation change from the tee to the fairway. It is another hole that provides stunning views from the tee complex.”
IMG ensured progress continued on the project during the pandemic via the use of photos, videos and conference calls with the construction team. “From March 2020, there was daily interaction for many months to ensure plans and specifications were followed,” said Burley.
IMG is currently in the design phase for four new projects in Vietnam.