Our course raters’ favorite spots on GOLF’s Top 100 Resorts in the World list

sea island resort

A view of Sea Island Resort in Sea Island, Ga.


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GOLF recently released its Top 100 Resorts in the World, identifying the best of the best when it comes to golf, luxury, accommodations and more. As well-traveled course raters, what’s your favorite golf resort you’ve ever been to?

Philip Gawith (rater since 2019): Gleneagles is the best resort hotel in the UK, combining magnificent scenery, old-world grandeur with modern touches and two wonderful James Braid courses, the Kings and the Queens. And for some, there is also the bonus in the form of the Ryder Cup Centenary course.

gleneagles in scotland
The Kings course at Gleneagles in Scotland. Courtesy

Pete Phipps (rater since 2021): Te Arai in New Zealand, although still a work in progress, will surely become one of the best resorts in the world. The South Course, designed by Coore & Crenshaw, is just as good as the private Tara Iti next door. Doak’s North Course is set to open in 2024. The clubhouse, restaurant and lodging design is modern, minimal and clean. You’ll be taking just as many photos inside the buildings as you will be out on the coastal courses.

Steve Lapper (rater since 2009): If the quality and variety of golf is most important, hands down it is Bandon Dunes. Nothing else beats having 103 amazingly good and fun holes on a single property. If it’s luxury accommodations, a plethora of non-golf activities and the feeling of an absolute retreat you seek, staying at The Sanctuary at Kiawah or The Lodge or The Cloisters at Sea Island can’t be beat.

Thomas Brown (rater since 2014): An off-the-grid adventure with sunscreen is required for my favorite resort. I visited Heritage Resorts in Mauritius off the African coast in the Indian Ocean this year. The resort has two courses on the volcanic island of Mauritius, with the second course, designed by Louis Oosthuizen and Peter Matkovich, set to open shortly for the DP World Tour event in December. The new course has skyline-green views of the ocean with distinctive yellow native grasses framing the fairways.

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