Archive | December, 2009

Aldar: Yas Links

“Yas Links is on schedule to become a unique and memorable golfing destination in the Middle East.”

-Chris White, General Manager of the Aldar Golf Division talks us through this magnificent, traditional golf development on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi.

Kyle Phillips continues to build his name and reputation on delivering ‘the purest’ form of golf. All over the world there are naturally beautiful golf courses where the architect has been able to meander golf holes through natural vegetation or landforms.

The challenge of some sites is to create a natural looking golf course from what might have been a relatively flat piece of land – Kyle Phillips has done that in the most dramatic way on Yas Island.

The design and building of the golf course not only involved the creation of landforms but also in gaining the maximum aesthetic and playing challenge from the coastline. The long, linear site has no fewer than eight holes that play parallel to the sea front whilst all 18 holes offer the most spectacular views of the beautiful Arabian Gulf.
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Kyle Phillips brings a taste of Scotland to Yas Island

“What makes yas links so intriguing,” designer Kyle Phillips tells Golf Digest, “is how traditional it is. Because if you think about it, in golf terms there’s currently nothing in the UAE that’s even remotely traditional.”

For a country that revels in glitz and extravagance, the idea of recreating an ancient throwback of a golf course and placing it directly opposite the gargantuan structures of the extra-terrestrial styled Ferrari World and the Yas Marina Circuit, seems peculiar. On one side of the road is more technological know-how than you’d find at the headquarters of NASA, and on the other is a golf course that’s decidedly minimalist, from the sparing use of cart paths to the windswept features that are so joyously informal and unkempt.

And the best possible tribute we could pay designer Kyle Phillips as we stood on the tee of the par 3 8th hole, is that were it not for the backdrop of Ferrari World, looming like an enormous red UFO, not to mention the 25 degree warmth of the sun, we might easily have been in Scotland.
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