First you build the world's largest and most lavish golf resort. Twelve courses, three clubhouses, two international hotel campuses and knowledgeable, well-trained staff.
|Mission Hills Shenzhen clubhouse|
If it all sounds like nothing succeeds like excess, or that bigger is brasher, prepare to be surprised.
Welcome to the amazing world of Mission Hills; the Chinese development company that is changing the face of golf holidays forever.
The first Mission Hills facility, between the cities of Shenzhen and Dongguan is a 90-minute drive from Hong Kong International Airport, and caters for well-heeled locals, along with international tourists.
In June, a total of 1,987 golfers made history at Mission Hills Shenzhen-Dongguan by taking part in the biggest single-day golf tournament in history.
The second resort is at Haikou on Hainan island – a one-hour flight away – in a region the Chinese government expects to be a major global tourism force within a decade.
And if you think we are talking standard golf courses; think again. All the Mission Hills courses are beautifully manicured with high-tech golf carts (and there is the possibility of night golf at both resorts); while the hotel and leisure facilities are similarly impressive.
|Nick Faldo course|
Mission Hills was founded in 1992 and is today headed by Hong Kong-born Ken Chu. It developed 20+ square kilometres of waste land outside Shenzhen and Dongguan to create a complex that is accredited by the Guinness Book Of Records as the largest in the world.
The 12 courses here are named after, and in some cases designed by, golf icons from around the world of golf: Jack Nicklaus, Pete Dye, Greg Norman, Nick Faldo, Annika Sorenstam, Jose Maria Olazabal, Ernie Els, Vijay Singh, Justin Rose/Ian Poulter, David Leadbetter, Jumbo Ozaki and Zhang Lianwei (a par-3 layout). Just about every golf playing demographic covered there.
The World Cup course designed by Jack Nicklaus – the first championship course in China, where golf was frowned upon only a few years ago - and the extremely tough Greg Norman layout are considered the two stand outs.
The Faldo course finishes with a spectacular island green, while the Vijay course is known for its fearsome bunkers. You pay your money and make your choice what style of course meets your daily mood.
The campus also includes a tennis academy with 51 courts (the largest facility in Asia), three golf teaching facilities, five-star hotels at both Shenzhen and Dongguan, three spa facilities, one at each clubhouse, a new Centreville shopping complex and, of course, residential housing developments.
For those travelling with their families, all the Mission Hills hotels feature specially decorated children’s' rooms, which interconnect with parents' rooms and all campuses offer childcare facilities – and to make sure everyone is comfortable dining options range from the traditional Chinese and Japanese restaurants to a Starbucks outlet and many western dishes.
Both campuses feature eco trails and eco galleries highlighting local flora and fauna and are popular with bird watchers and butterfly lovers.
With staff across all the Mission Hills facilities multinational and multilingual - the company now has over 14,000 employees - a visit to either resort is truly the golf holiday of a lifetime. And if your party includes non-golfers, wives or children then there is plenty to also keep them occupied.
And the Mission Hills group is not finished yet. Next up is a new golf resort in Yunnan.
Mission Hills Shenzhen is 30 minutes from the border with Hong Kong and 15 minutes from Shenzhen city, while Mission Hills Dongguan, just a shuttle bus ride away, is 50 kilometres from Guangzhou. Both are around a 90-minute drive from Hong Kong International Airport. For details of courses and hotels visit www.missionhillschina.com.
Qantas operates 28 return services each week from Australia to Hong Kong, with daily flights from Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney. With Hong Kong a key hub for the region, customers can enjoy onward connections to cities across Asia with partner airlines. The new Qantas lounge in Hong Kong offers signature cocktails, wines, spirits and barista service and with all of Qantas’s inbound flights from Hong Kong to Australia being overnight, customers can enjoy a substantial meal in the lounge before they fly so they can maximise their sleep on board. See www.qantas.com.au.
# This is an abbreviated version of a story that appeared in Golf Australia magazine. That story also features full details of Mission Hills Hainan.
# The author was a guest of Mission Hills.