Designed by Lee Schmidt and Brian Curley in 2000, the Bali Hai golf course is a worthy namesake of the famous Indonesian land of enchantment. The lush surroundings include seven-acres of opulent water features, a total of 4,000 trees with 2,500 stands of towering palms and 100,000 Bali Hai Golf Club tropical plants. Transition and out-of-play areas are accented with Augusta white sand and black volcanic rock outcroppings.
The par-71 course measures 7,002 yards from the tips and affords spectacular views of the Strip mega-resorts from the fairways. Bali Hai’s unique layout includes teasers like #16, a par-3 island green that frequently comes with an audience from the Cili Restaurant patio and #3, a 468 yard par-4 with a creek running the entire right-side, balanced with a bunker on the left. Play #3 and find out why it’s called “Shipwreck.” Challenging play, breathtaking scenery and first class facilities make Bali Hai a one-of-a-kind golfer’s paradise.
The opening hole invites a tee shot just past the 100 yards marker, and an approach shot with 1 club extra as it plays uphill – great opportunity to score right out of the gate! The second is a reachable par five with rolling terrain and mounds that will funnel slightly off line tee shots towards the middle of the fairway. The approach to a well bunkered green complex is a tough one. The fairway slopes toward the creek that runs all along the right side on number three, so stay left center off the tee. Avoid this hazard and the airplanes that are coming at you off the runways of McCarron International Airport, and this hole can be had. A shot placed to the left side of the green will funnel towards the center. The fourth is a short par four, that plays uphill on the approach. A pond short left does a nice job of protecting the putting surface. Stay left off the tee on five, which has another pond on the right side, about 50 yards away from the green. The short par three sixth plays over water with bail out room to the left. This 3 hole sequence is one of the easiest on course. The seventh is a challenging par five that can be reached in two by long hitters favoring the left side. A smarter play is to hit short left of the green, taking the treacherous green -side bunker on the right out of play. The 8th is one of many holes that feature the beautiful Mandalay Bay Casino Resort as a backdrop. It is a long and challenging par four, with lay up room short left of the green. The front side closes with a gorgeous par three, featuring a water hazard left and in front, with bail out room right.
Number ten, though not overly long, is another challenging par five. The fairway is quite rolling and the uphill putting surface is well protected by bunkers. Water left, lots of sand and a ridged, undulating green provide some challenge on 11, though as the # 18 handicap this is the easiest hole at Bali Hai Golf. Grip it and rip it on twelve – and aim towards the top of the Luxor pyramid. Pay attention to pin placement on this ridged green. Thirteen plays extremely long, as it bends to the right to a slightly elevated green complex. This precedes the most challenging par three of the layout. If the prevailing wind is up, this shot will play longer than the 202 advertised yards from the silver tees (250 from the tips). The 15th is a dogleg left Par5 that plays as the number eight handicap. Accuracy off the tee and distance on the second shot are important here. Another extremely pretty par three follows on sixteen, which plays over water with some room long. The two finishing holes can make or break your round. Seventeen plays tough if the wind is up. Only the longest of hitters will be able to negotiate the right fairway bunker off the tee to cut off some yardage on this long (484 from the tips) dogleg right par four. Eighteen is a spectacular and also long par four. Average golfers will play to approach the green in three, and hope for an efficient up and down. The water hazard short right does a great job of protecting the putting surface.
Bali Hai is a Golf Digest Top 50 Resort Course.