Iconic shots of Tiger Woods hitting drives off the helipad of the world's tallest hotel, the Burj Al Arab, ushered in a new era for Dubai as one of the most admired and desired destinations in the golf world. Some called the Woods shot in 2004 miraculous, but the true miracle occurred 15 years earlier in 1989 when the Emirates Golf Club rose out of the middle of the desert for members and visitors to golf in Dubai on a grass course for the very first time.
The desert miracle known as Dubai golf was born, and the European Tour arrived shortly after with the Dubai Desert Classic, attracting the world’s best golfers to the Majlis Course.
Growth in Dubai
Developers continued to build, and people flocked to the region. With its warm winter climate, what set golf courses in Dubai apart back then was the conditioning and playing surfaces. This remains the Emirates’ unique selling point still today. In recent years, new Dubai golf courses with signature names like Montgomerie, Norman, Faldo, Woods, and Els have emerged. They meander through master planned housing developments or find themselves amongst a towering cityscape built around green terrace spaces.
Golfing in Dubai has also benefited from the ‘Desert Swing’, that now encompasses three professional tour events in the gulf and the ‘Race to Dubai’ that culminates in the season-ending DP World Tour Championship.