Today, we will explore The Bluffs Ho Tram Strip with Bill Healey, The Ho Tram Bluff is one of the golf courses was desiged Greg Norman, a legend.
The Bluffs Ho Tram Strip is an integrated resort offering a wide range of activities including golf, casino gaming, spa treatments, nightclubs, a variety of world-class dining options, and an endless seaside beach. Set on the sun-drenched coast of the East Sea in southern Vietnam, The Bluffs was built upon towering, natural sand dunes to capture the true essence of a links-style course. When the course designer Greg Norman visited The Bluffs in May 2013, he called the site one of the two best he's ever had the privilege to work with (the other being Doonbeg in Ireland).
The Bluffs’ General Manager, Ben Styles has mentioned “As a professional golfer myself, I have much experience playing around the world on links golf courses, and I can honestly say that The Bluffs is as good a test of golf as any other layout I've seen. The Bluffs makes me try new shots, hit shots I've not hit in a long time, and use every club in my bag.”
On our day to play, the weather was rather warm -- the sky clear of clouds with only a slight breeze. With our tee-time set at 9am, it made for a hot round of golf. As is standard at The Bluffs, we were each provided a golf cart and caddy. The caddies were very helpful and well-trained by Ms. Kelly Phuong, Golf Operations Manager at The Bluffs.
The course is a challenge. Not the longest course available, but one that requires careful thought on club selection with each shot. An errant shot here and there, and you’ll easily lose several balls out-of-bounds. I certainly did on a few occasions.
The view is fantastic from almost any vantage point. I honestly cannot select a favorite hole, as each was challenging and visually pleasing.
We were well cared for on all levels. The Resort’s full management team was very helpful and hospitable throughout our stay -- from its president Shaun McCamley and General Director Colin Pine, to The Bluff’s General Manager Ben Styles and Teaching Professional Patrick Kelly.
The Grand provided round-trip transportation between Ho Chi Minh City and the resort in Vung Tau for our 3-day, 2 night stay. The accommodations were extremely pleasant, with the most comfortable beds I’ve experienced.
The Spa at the Grand was also an enjoyable experience. For those of us who had spent the day on the golf course, The Spa offered a chance to unwind with a signature treatment after a day of exercise. Complimenting the treatment was the wonderful panoramic view we had from the treatment room -- the sea, the beaches and the resort’s pool. It was truly a good way to relax.
We were later joined by The Grand’s directors at Jù Băo Xuān, their upscale restaurant which offers Cantonese cuisine in a chic, sophisticated setting. The delectable meal, wine and friendly discussion took us well into the evening.
This was my second time to The Grand, and my first time to play The Bluffs. It’s a leisure getaway I’ll be looking to visit again every opportunity I have.
Bill Healey | Vietnamgolfmagazine