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 HOME AT FIRST's

GOLF CLUBS in

— Explore New Zealand 18 Holes at a Time —

Cape Kidnappers Golf Course

Hawkes Bay, North Island, New Zealand

CAPE KIDNAPPER'S GC — FROM NEW TO #38 IN THE WORLD IN A DECADE
Photo of cliff-top Holes 14, 15, 16, 17, & 18 overlooking the South Pacific courtesy Cape Kidnappers G.C.

Cape

Kidnappers

 Golf Course 

446 Clifton Road, Te Awanga, Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand
Golf Shop Tel: +64 6 873 1018 Email: info@capekidnappers.com

 

 

Cape Kidnappers Golf Course showing holes 5, 6, and 7
Cape Kidnappers GC photo by Joann Dost

Arrival of a Young Giant

        In 2001, the opening of the acclaimed Pacific Dunes course in Bandon, OR, announced the arrival of America’s youngest prodigy golf course architect, Tom Doak. Now, with the January, 2004, opening of Cape Kidnappers in Hawkes Bay, New Zealand, Doak has been elevated to a prodigy on the world stage.
        A devoted student of Pete Dye and biographer-admirer of Alister Mackenzie, Tom Doak is the embodiment of the fashionable "minimalist" approach to course design.

 

 

TOM DOAK
Course Architect

        "The greatest compliment we can receive is for someone to look at our work and say, ‘Well, they had a great site so they didn’t really have to do very much, the course was laying there already.’ The truest test of ability is to make the work look easy."

— TOM DOAK

   

        With the excitingly dramatic Cape Kidnappers course, it’s easy to credit Nature with the design, and compliment the course architect for doing little to alter it.
        "Pacific Dunes (rated #2 in "Golf Courses in America You Can Play" by Golf Magazine’s
golfonline.com) and Cape Kidnappers are two different sites," according to Doak. "Pacific Dunes, even though its sits on top of cliffs, is all sand dunes. Cape Kidnappers is much too high for that. It’s kind of eroded volcanic soil — like a tilted table top with some deep valleys cut into it. Pacific Dunes almost never has a level lie; at Cape Kidnappers there are different tilts in the ground but there aren't too many funky contours at all. If we had built them, it would have just looked silly."

        Cape Kidnappers Golf Course is the second in an imagined series of high-end golf resorts that is the dream of American billionaire Julian Robertson. Along with Robertson’s Kauri Cliffs on the Pacific Coast in Northland, Cape Kidnappers looks to be a jewel in a crown of courses that will make New Zealand a world-class golf destination. In May, 2012, Cape Kidnappers was ranked #6 on GolfDigest.com's top 100 courses outside of the United States.
        Like Kauri Cliffs (#19 on the current
GolfDigest.com list), Cape Kidnappers is not true links territory. It is a peninsula jutting into the sea comprised of a series of high ridges of volcanic material, soft enough to erode by the crashing waves, but hard enough to maintain rugged cliffs. On top, the playing surface is firm and fast and treeless, and the wind often plays a significant role. The roughs are rough with links-like grasses, and the gullies and chasms are steep, deep, rocky and vegetated. Every hole provides a view of Hawkes Bay. Some holes offer high perches with 500-foot drops to the Pacific.

        About Cape Kidnappers and other "minimalist" courses Tom Doak says:  

          "The most noteworthy courses of the past decade have been among the least expensive to build. Thanks to clients who understand the value of beautiful property, we're able to create courses which compare with the best of the past...and look like they have been here just as long.

        "Great design is a matter of detail. We pride ourselves on taking the time to get things right."

 


 

Cape Kidnappers Golf Course

Hawkes Bay, North Island, New Zealand

 

Length & Par:
     • Championship Blue Tees:     Par 71, 6532 meters (7144 yards)
    
• White Tees:                           Par 71, 6114 meters (6687 yards)
    
• Green Tees:                           Par 71, 5708 meters (6243 yards)
    
• Red Tees:                               Par 71, 5310 meters (5807 yards)
    
• Yellow Tees:                          Par 71, 4739 meters (5183 yards)

 

Greens Fees (per round, daily):
    • May 1–September 30: NZ$313
    • October 1–April 30: NZ$475
            
 
—currency calculator—

 

Open and Playable Year Round     •    Minimum Handicap: None

 

TEE-TIMES: advance booking of tee-times required. Visitors welcome always.

 

Facilities & Rentals:
    • Golf Carts: NZ$32
    • Pull Carts (trundlers): NZ$16
    • Club Rental: NZ$70
    • Changing rooms for men and women
    • Club Pro Shop/Golf Shop
    • Practice area and putting green
    • Full Clubhouse with Bar and restaurant
    • Caddies: YES— NZ$60 (single) and NZ$115 (double)

    • Forecaddies: NZ$30

 

LOCATION: On Cape Kidnappers, east of Napier, Hastings and Havelock North, on the Pacific coast in the southeastern central part of the North Island of New Zealand.

Address:  Cape Kidnappers Golf Course
446 Clifton Road, Te Awanga
Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand

 

Bookings (from the USA):
     Tel: +64 09 407 0060 
     Email:
proshop@capekidnappers.com
    OR via the AUTOMATED BOOKING WEB PAGE
    OR have Home At First book a tee-time for you as part of your
    independent New Zealand travel itinerary — it’s FREE!

 

Nearest HOME AT FIRST lodgings:
       In Hawkes Bay in and near the principal towns of Napier, Hastings, and Havelock North, just a few minutes drive from Cape Kidnappers.

 

OTHER GOLF IN THE IMMEDIATE AREA: Several other courses are located in the Hawkes Bay region.


HISTORY OF CAPE KIDNAPPERS GOLF COURSE:
        Before Cape Kidnappers Golf Course opened in 2004, the land was part of a 5,000 acre sheep and cattle station (ranch). The site was called to the attention of American investment tycoon Julian Robertson, who also owns Kauri Cliffs in the Bay of Islands. Although construction of the course was challenged by very active New

 
 

The rugged end of Cape Kidnappers, with the landmark "Tooth" jutting up out
of the South Pacific.

Cape Kidnappers GC photo by Joann Dost

Zealand environmental conservationists, the project was approved and constructed in a relatively short 15 months.

        Native Maoris lived around Cape Kidnappers until well after the coming of Europeans to New Zealand. England’s great explorer and circumnavigator, Captain James Cook, named the site Cape Kidnappers after visiting it in his HMS Endeavor in 1769. The Kidnappers were Maoris who stole Cook’s young Tahitian translator from the ship. The boy escaped from the Maori canoes only when Captain Cook’s men fired on the

 

natives, killing some of the kidnappers. Cook

named the Hawkes Bay, too, after Sir Edward Hawke, First Lord of the Admiralty.


Cape Kidnappers Golf Course
THE COURSE AND SOME NOTABLE HOLES

        At Cape Kidnappers, every hole has a view of the ocean. Several fairways run along the cliff tops, and some greens are built on promontories with 500-foot drops to the sea.
        Although there are few fairway bunkers and no trees in the line of fire, several tee shots must carry across deep, menacing ravines before finding safe haven on relatively flat fairways with wide landing areas. Natural looking bunkers — in the tradition of Alistair Mackenzie — protect most greens on the front, while end-of-the-world cliffs provide the ultimate penalty to overshot approaches. And, because the wind is likely blowing on the open cliffs of Cape Kidnappers, golfers are wise to come prepared to keep drives low and run the ball up onto the greens.

 

• HOLE 6, "Gulley", 225 yards, par 3: Long even from the whites (212 yards) this challenging 3 requires a tee shot over an unforgiving gully to a raised green protected with 6 bunkers on the left and right. Let the spectacular ocean view distract you and you’re in the ditch or in the sand.

 

Looking across the gully from tee to green
on the 6th hole at Cape Kidnappers.

Cape Kidnappers GC photo by Joann Dost

 
 

The back of the 10th green drops suddenly
into the Pacific far below.

Cape Kidnappers GC photo by Joann Dost

• HOLE 10, "Seaward Ho", 470 yards, par 4: A long, straight drive across another ravine is required to the wide, flat fairway. Then a tough, long second shot is needed to reach the green with only 3 bunkers and meager rough between safety and the sea.

• HOLE 14, "Pimple", 348 yards, par 4: This shortest par 4 is one of the course’s toughest holes, requiring another deep chasm to be flown, and a devilish pot bunker to be avoided at the green.

• HOLE 15, "Pirate’s Plank", 650 yards, par 5: This hole might better be called "Aircraft Carrier", with its flattop bordered with a 460’ drop into the Pacific on the left and 66’ drop into a ravine on the right. Most of the way its fairway or drop off, so hitting it straight 4 or 5 times without a hook or a slice is mandatory here. No fairway bunkers needed. Toughest hole on the course and longest golf hole in New Zealand. Careful you don’t wander off the green — that first step off plummets 500’.

• HOLE 16, "Widow’s Walk", 500 yards, par 5: One long hole after another. The climb up to the cliff-side tee is a struggle, but the unique view of the Black Reef makes you forget you’re panting. It’s a short drive across a ravine and down onto the undulating fairway with 3 bunkers on the right and a drop into perdition on the left. Although much shorter than 15, bunkers around the green make the approach critical.

 

The challenge to golfers and the challenge to
course designer Tom Doak are obvious in this
aerial shot of holes 12 to 17 at Cape Kidnappers.

Cape Kidnappers GC photo by Joann Dost


THE REGION:
       Hawkes Bay is one of the hottest and sunniest areas of New Zealand. Its long hot summers and cool winters provide ideal growing conditions for grapes, and Hawkes Bay has become (along with Marlborough on the South island) one of New Zealand’s two best-known wine producing regions. The region has gained an international reputation first for quality white wines and now for its reds.
       As such, Hawkes Bay is a principal destination for food, wine and lifestyle in New Zealand. And that lifestyle has attracted artists and artisans to the region, creating a lively art, culture, and crafts scene with over fifty regional studios and galleries.

The Gannet Colony at Hawkes Bay is the world's largest mainland colony of the large, diving sea birds. New Zealand Tourism photo.

         The Pacific Coast golden sand beaches, water theme parks, swimming pools, and crystal clear rivers. Here visitors can swim with dolphins, visit the National Aquarium of New Zealand or see the largest mainland gannet colony in the world right Cape Kidnappers.
        Adventure seekers can try jet-boating, hot air ballooning, surfing, caving and paragliding as

 

well as sailing and windsurfing. Outdoorsmen will

find lots of opportunities for hiking, fishing and, of course, world class golf.

HOME AT FIRST offers independent, flexible, fly/drive travel to Hawkes Bay and 13 other regions of New Zealand, with great golf available at almost every stop along the way. Plan your own trip, with our expert help. More information on HOME AT FIRST travel to NEW ZEALAND.

 

HOME AT FIRST

Want to learn about other courses throughout NEW ZEALAND
including some of the greatest tests of golf in the world? See our
NEW ZEALAND COURSE GUIDE for more information.

Read more about HOME AT FIRST's independent fly/drive
travel program to New Zealand's
HAWKE'S BAY region.