Gary Player Course

Gary Player Course

Beauty & Tranquility


Gary Player currently devotes a great deal of time to designing world-class golf courses that are both challenging and a pleasure to play. His credo for golf architecture is beauty and tranquility, an objective that is the hallmark of all elements at Somabay. He believes in a course with an interesting mix of shots that tests the imagination and strategic skills of all levels of golfers.

The championship course is an excellent test of golf for the seasoned golfer and low handicap player, however due to the variety of teeing grounds the course is a fair test for those starting their golfing journeys.  The course is rated from 4 sets of tees that provide an enjoyable experience for all. 

Our location adjacent to the Red Sea gives us ever changing wind conditions that provide an additional test but results in the course playing very differently from one day to the next. 


  • Length Of Course: 5363 Yards - 6998 Yards / 4900 meters – 6400 meters
  • Par of The Course: 72
  • Course Designer: Gary Player Design Group
  • Fairway Grass: Kikuyu
  • Greens: Paspalum Dynasty (reseeded 2021)
  • Bunkers: 68
  • Water Hazards: 9 Holes Featuring Water Hazards, Including the Red Sea
  • Golf Carts: 55 Club Car Precedents
  • Practice Facilities: Double ended Driving Range 300m – Grass Tee & Mats


Working Hours
Tee times are available from 7AM till Sunset

For reservation or more information please call the proshop on +2 012 2350 3528
Hole by Hole
Hole 1: First Encounters
Par : 4
Black: 419
Blue: 402
White: 394
Orange: 346

The opening hole at Somabay Golf is 419 yards dog-leg to the right around one of the many lakes on the Course.  It provides a “First Encounters” with many of the Course’s characteristic features: the water hazards, the strategically placed bunkers, the shaped greens.

Hole 1 is a wind-assisted dog-leg to the right with a waste bunker forming the left boundary.  On the right, starting roughly 110 yards from the championship tee, a lateral water hazard parallels the fairway up to and beyond the green.  About 250 yards away from the championship tee, or 135 yards from the ladies ‘ tee, a big bunker divides the fairway in the general direction of play.

The green has two levels from left to right and a protective bunker at its right front side.  The first hole introduces the golfer to many of the characteristic features of Somabay Golf– the first encounter with one of the course’s many water hazards, and with its strategically placed bunkers, and its shaped greens.

This encounter is likely to be of the hazardous and challenging kind and offers an opportunity to draw first blood.

Hole 2: Lions in Waiting
Par : 5
Black: 614
Blue: 591
White: 579
Orange: 508

This hole is a relatively long par 5, typically assisted by prevailing winds in the general direction of play. The tee complex faces a large flowerbed as well as a largely open channel of water drawn off the course’s inter-connecting lagoons.  To clear these hazards the ball has to carry at least 180 yards from the championship tee.   To the right, the fairway is bordered by the continued extension of the open channel of water, followed by a large and continuous waste bunker.  In the second landing area.  Gary Player has placed two of his characteristically deep fairway bunkers, both left and right. 

From there, the contoured fairway rises gently, allowing an easy approach to the green which rises in the back and is protected at the right front by a bunker.

In the far background of the green, and across from Somabay’s ring-road, two lion-shaped sphinx statues lie in watch on top of high mounds straddling the entrance to the Sheraton Somabay Resort.

Hole 3: Bunker Alley
Par : 4
Black: 427
Blue: 401
White: 378
Orange: 326

This long par 4 is a tough one, especially in windy conditions. At the landing zone off the championship tee (221 to 270) yards, the fairway narrows considerably and is bordered by four bunkers to the left and five bunkers to the right.  Furthermore, the desert borders the fairway to the right so that a slice is punished badly, and is often accentuated by prevailing winds

which are generally against the direction of play from left to right.  Six deep bunkers protect the gradually rising green.

Hole 4: Green and Blue
Par : 4
Black: 438
Blue: 413
White: 387
Orange: 352

After crossing the road, you reach this hole’s raised tee complex from where can be seen in the distance the blue waters of the Red Sea framing the green. To the left of the green, on the apron, a halfway pavilion invites you to rest and to contemplate one of the most scenic spots on the peninsula.

Gary Player has placed three large bunkers to the left and two to the right of the landing zone. Your drive should preferably aim left of center to facilitate your approach to the green but you should also allow for prevailing side winds from the left.  Since the green is located about 30 meters in front of the coastline, the danger of losing the ball after hitting a long second shot is minimal.

Hole 5: The Pebbles of Soma
Par : 3
Black: 207
Blue: 170
White: 146
Orange: 132

This absolutely spectacular par 3 features a green that protrudes well into the sea, and which is surrounded on three sides by a continuous narrow bunker and by the breaking waters of the Red Sea.  A generous landing area on the left, which is naturally inclined towards the green, offers an obvious target for the less venturesome golfer.  The more venturesome should consider that low winds, a bite, or a fade will carry the ball to the target.  The green is laid out in steps making putting an interesting challenge against the backdrop of the surrounding sea.

Hole 6: Kosie’s Hole
Par : 4
Black: 339
Blue: 299
White: 267
Orange: 238

 The fairway stretches out along the sea towards an elevated green overlooking a small inlet.  The usually strong headwinds seem to “lengthen” the fairway, which, at about 220 yards from the championship tee.

A deep bunker on the left protects the elevated green, which is framed by the sea on two sides.

For the second shot, it is often advisable to choose a longer iron in order to reach the elevated green against often-strong headwinds.

Hole 7: Jaws
Par : 4
Black: 396
Blue: 376
White: 338
Orange: 311

Hole 7 leads back to the clubhouse and away from the sea.  It is a pronounced dogleg to the right, bordered on the right by a large waste bunker dotted by palm trees.  You need to aim slightly to the left of the green if you can manage to cross the waste bunker with a 270 yards drive, thereby choosing a tiger line to the green.  Shorter hitters should aim still more left but should beware of a roughly 20-meter-long bunker located on the left edge of the fairway.  From this bunker, the fairway takes a nearly ninety-degree turn to the right towards the highly elevated kidney-shaped green, protected by deep bunkers at the front and back. These jaw-like bunkers lie in waiting for the intrepid golfer who dares to aim for the narrow heart of the green. More conservative players may prefer to approach the green from the right.

Hole 8: Shadow Play
Par : 3
Black: 193
Blue: 180
White: 161
Orange: 118

After crossing a tunnel, an incline of almost 40 meters leads up to a seemingly easy, but relatively long, par 3.  From the tee complex, you can see the 9th hole leading to the clubhouse basking in the sunlight. Transverse winds from right to left can, on occasion, reduce the chances of hitting the green, which is protected by two inclined bunkers on the right and is bordered by two inclined bunkers on the right, and is bordered by an extended waste bunker on the left.  Late in the day, the setting sun highlights the contours of bunkers and green with extended shadows.  

Hole 9: Double Trouble
Par : 5
Black: 540
Blue: 499
White: 472
Orange: 437

A wonderful view of the clubhouse opens up as you approach the tees of number nine.  A wide landing zone offers an invitation to try a powerful drive off the tee.  On this hole hazards come in pairs, encouraging the exercise of strategy in shot selection.  Two bunkers in the middle of the fairway stand guard against an extra-long drive or a wayward second shot.

Two more bunkers follow to the left of the fairway.  The green is protected by two water hazards, with the course’s first cascading lagoon on the right and an open water channel, marked by a large boulder, at the front.  At the back of the green five bunkers help to contain excessively long approach shots.

Hole 10: Reverse Loop
Par : 5
Black: 480
Blue: 457
White: 429
Orange: 409

This hole plays from elevated tees with a wide landing area guarded by a fairway bunker to the right and waste bunkers forming the left and right boundaries of the hole.  The length of this hole may at times appear to stretch as a result of headwinds which also often cross the fairway from right to left.  The second landing area is protected by big fairway bunkers to

The left and right.  The green is elevated and guarded by two additional deep bunkers on the left of the green, both front and back.

Hole 10 marks the start of the back nine, consisting of a reverse loop away from the clubhouse.  The layout of Somabay Golf is different from that of most courses.  Instead of zigzagging from hole to hole, the sequence of play at Somabay Golf follows an extended figure eight, giving the golfer the opportunity to visually explore the many facets of the Somabay Peninsula.

Hole 11: Panorama Bay
Par : 4
Black: 426
Blue: 420
White: 395
Orange: 350

Play starts from elevated tees across naturally contoured ravines to a landing area with three fairway bunkers to the left and one bunker to the right.  The first half of the right-hand side of the fairway is bordered by an extended waste bunker. The green is elevated and kidney-shaped with a big protective bunker to its right. Prevailing winds are generally against the direction of play and across from right to left.

In the background, a panoramic view is offered of the peninsula’s south-east coastline against the backdrop of the rugged mountain range which separates the Nile Valley from the Red Sea

Hole 12: Dilemma…Dilemma
Par : 4
Black: 355
Blue: 309
White: 290
Orange: 258

Before you take your first shot from this hole’s elevated tees you need to choose between two alternative target areas located on a split fairway.  The left-hand fairway offers a wider

Landing area, but also the longer route to the green.

The right-side fairway favors the more accurate drive with a shorter distance to the green but beware of prevailing headwinds which can carry your ball left to right.  Both fairways are surrounded by an extended and landscaped waste bunker.  The green and its surroundings slope upwards from the front to the back, with two protective bunkers on each side.  Late in the afternoon, dramatic sunsets can be seen from the eleventh green.

Hole 13: Optical Illusion
Par : 5
Black: 543
Blue: 473
White: 441
Orange: 391

This is a relatively straightforward par 5 with only one fairway bunker left of the first landing area and waste bunkers at the left and right edges of the first half of the fairway.  From the landing area the fairway slopes down to a smallish green framed by spectacular background views of the Red Sea, and two protective front bunkers right and left.

Because the green is situated on a promontory, as you approach it from the downward sloping fairway you experience the illusion that it is surrounded in close proximity by the deep blue waters of the Red Sea.  In fact, as becomes apparent once on the green, it is raised more than 20 meters above sea level and is more than 300 meters distant from the peninsula’s northern reef-like coastline.

Hole 14: Second Signature
Par : 3
Black: 186
Blue: 178
White: 154
Orange: 131

This hole rivals’ number five as a strong candidate to Somabay Golf signature hole. Elevated tees playing over a desert ravine requires a carry of about 180 yards.  The green is narrow and long from left to right.  An over pitch will have your ball end up in the Red Sea.  The green is guarded with a deep pot bunker to the left front and back right.

The Red Sea coastline is on the reverse loop of the back nine.  Besides the tee complex another halfway pavilion offers rest and refreshment, as well as the opportunity to contemplate the lengthy coastline from its elevated position.

Hole 15: Great Wall of Soma
Par : 4
Black: 358
Blue: 338
White: 315
Orange: 254

This is a spectacular, although naturally shortened, hole on the edge of the Red Sea.  The entire left-hand side of the fairway and green is on the shore’s edge.  The right-hand side of the fairway is defined as a waste bunker.  Often wind-assisted, the tee shot requires an accurate drive over a first sand cover to the fairway.  The approach shot to the green also needs to carry over a larger natural coastal ravine to a long but relatively narrow green, guarded by a deep right front bunker.

Looking forward and back from the tees and green, one can see the long-rugged line of Somabay’s north-eastern coast, stretching in an extended arc, with a parallel line of breaking waves marking the limits of the peninsula’s coral shelf.  Because of the sculptured terrain, caused over the eons by rare rain-waters, the cart path on this hole is bordered by retaining stone walls, which from a distance are reminiscent of China’s Great Wall.

Hole 16: Ricochet Gully
Par : 3
Black: 184
Blue: 144
White: 118
Orange: 107

This short Par 3 features a big green surrounded by 2 bunkers.  A sold vertical rock wall surrounds the amphitheater green. 

The concept for this hole was born during a site visit by Gary Player in late July 1998.  He was so taken by the rockwork which can be seen throughout Somabay Golf, that be proposed to carve a green within a surrounding rock face. The design concept foresees that if the ball misses the green or its protective bunkers, it should be allowed to ricochet from rock to rock.

A year later, Gary’s concept became reality.

Hole 17: Double Dip
Par : 4
Black: 470
Blue: 449
White: 419
Orange: 379

This is a long Par 4 whose length is often mitigated by prevailing winds which are mostly in the direction of Play. The landing area is guarded by a long deep fairway bunker to the left and a waste bunker to the right.  The green is split between two distinct levels, with a swell of 1.5 meters dividing the two, and is protected by a single small bunker to the left front.  Because of its length this hole has been described as a “never-ending story” by an aspiring young player. 

Once on the green, the double-dip of its surface will challenge even the experienced putter.

Hole 18: The Terminator
Par : 4
Black: 423
Blue: 369
White: 336
Orange: 316

This hole requires two accurate shots.  The landing area is narrow, guarded by two deep fairway bunkers on the left and a waste bunker along the entire right fairway boundary.

The elevated green is set against the spectacular Cascades water feature and its clubhouse.  At the front, two bunkers guard the green both to the left and right.

Although much shorter than seventeen, Somabay Golf last hole plays against the wing.  Back to back these two holes provide a challenging finale to a full day of golf.