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Playing Golf in New Zealand

December 21, 2009

We selected Millbrook Resort as our destination in the Queenstown, New Zealand area because it had a golf course! And what a great choice it was!  The accommodations were super–living room, bedroom, fireplace, and a patio with a private garden and great view of the mountains, and our own pet duck.  We were on the tee box of hole number 8.    We had been told that the golf course was very popular, so made our tee time at the pro shop right after we checked in.  Because it was a little overcast and chilly when we arrived, we made the tee time for noon, to give Mother Nature time to warm up the day.  The staff at the pro shop was very friendly and accommodating, and agreed to let us play as a two-some.  Most golfers elect to walk the course, but we reserved a golf cart, to provide some shelter in case we encountered rain during our round.    The course was designed by Sir Bob Charles, a British Open winner, and New Zealand golfing legend.  We played the amended course layout, which included 14 of the original holes, with the remainder on the two new nines that are under construction.When we checked in for our round, the staff at the pro shop asked which tees we would be playing from.  There are four sets of tees.  My choice was easy–the forward!  Jim chose the white tees, Par 71, Rating 69.4, Slope 123.  The reason that we had to declare our tees is that the score cards are tee specific–something I had never seen before! We each had an individual score card, And a funny-looking score card it was!  Take a look!    



Front of Scorecard


  Another funny thing that we noticed about the scorecards, is that was no clip on the steering wheel of the cart to hold them.  So we stuck them in a compartment, and had to pull them out after every hole to write our scores.  After loading our rental clubs on our cart, we made our way to the driving range, which was quite a distance from the pro shop.  We kept going and going, and were very glad we had chosen to rent a cart because it would have probably taken us twenty minutes to walk to the range.  After our warm-up, and acquainting ourselves with our rental clubs (Taylor Made, nice set, but way too stiff for me), we made our way to the first tee, where the group ahead of us were preparing to tee off.   The group ahead of us was (gasp!) a fivesome, and they were walking.  Jim and I looked at each other, and realized that we were in for a very lengthy round.  But, one of the fivesome members noticed us, and asked, “Is it just two of you?”  We said yes, and he invited us to go ahead!  Yay!  Golf is a polite game!  

We were off!  When we got to the green, we had another surprise.  Jim was the first in the hole, and instead of the nice “clunk” sound that I am used to when the ball hits the bottom of the cup, we heard a “ping!”  The cup was made of tin!    

The course was enjoyable, but the scenery was so distracting, that it was hard to focus on golf sometimes.  The beauty of this course reminded me once again, why a golf course is my favorite place to be!  A memorable feature of this golf course is that from some roughs, herds of sheep grazed in the background.


Millbrook is a special resort and golf course.  We heartily recommend it!

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