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Golf Australia Express : Issue 7
LIST THE FOUNDED IN 1932, Hirono Golf Club is Japan’s most distinguished club. A member’s only club, it has hosted Japan’s major golf events. Located near the port of Kobe, not far from Osaka, it was designed by respected golf course architect Charles Alison. Hirono is widely considered Japan’s No.1 golf course. Built on an estate previously owned by a feudal warlord, the 6925-yard layout is a supreme test of golf. Strategic bunkering, small elevated greens, double doglegs and forced carries over ravines are all key elements on the heavily treed track. And there’s plenty of water in play, too. As is the case throughout Japan, the meticulous condition extends beyond the fairways and greens. Hirono is like a Japanese garden manicured from top to bottom— it’s an incredibly beautiful sight. Alison designed four stunning par 3s, which remain among the most celebrated sets of short holes in the world. The course is also famous for its three extremely difficult finishing holes. This trio has seen the demise of many would-be champions over the years. NO.1 COURSE Hirono Golf Club, Kobe, Honshu PHOTOGRAPHY COURTESY OF DAVID SCALETTI