Dubai Desert Classic – At the Heights of Golf

Written by Silvana Fitzpatrick
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The Dubai Desert Classic has once again returned to the emirate, at the stunning Majlis Course, in Emirates Golf Club. The Dubai Desert Classic first took place in 1989, when the European Tour made its first trip to the Middle East.

The tournament is so much more than just watching golf. It is one of the most exciting family-friendly events for all ages to enjoy. The Tournament Town in Emirates Hills offered free entertainment all week, packed with food pop-ups, bars, and live music. A dedicated Kids' Day and a Picnic Package across all five days of the tournament were some of the new additions to this year's event.

Dubai Desert Classic has been part of the DP World Tour's Rolex Series since last year. The January tournament took place from the 26th to the 30th and has delivered yet another memorable edition of the historic event which culminated yesterday with Rory McIlroy’s dramatic victory against rival Patrick Reed by a shot. Yesterday's victory makes McIlroy a three-time winner of the Hero Dubai Desert Classic trophy.

World’s Number One Golfer Secures Victory in Dubai

The city has seen some of the world's best players come to Dubai for the second Rolex Series event of 2023, two weeks after an exciting season-opener in the new Hero Cup. With a prize fund of $9 million and back-to-back Rolex Series events in January throughout the Middle East, the five-day tournament in Dubai was in full swing.

Rory Mcllroy, ranked world’s number one golfer, was the leading figure at this year’s golf event at Emirates Golf Club. The Northern Irish champion joins Ernie Els as a three-time winner of the Dubai Desert Classic. He previously won the title in 2009 and 2015.

Yesterday’s grand finale saw Rory McIlroy win the Dubai Desert Classic reeling off four straight birdies in the first four holes of Round 3 to take the lead with a birdie on the 18th hole, while Patrick Reed’s final round 65 was not enough for victory.

Other prominent golfers who participated in the 34th edition of the tournament in Dubai were the 2019 Open Champion Shane Lowry, as well as DP World Tour stars Tommy Fleetwood, and Tyrrell Hatton.

After storms and heavy rain disturbed the Rolex Series event last week, the organisers confirmed that the tournament will remain a 72-hole competition, with the second round completed on Saturday and the final two rounds pushed back a day to take place on Sunday and yesterday, respectively.

Dubai Desert Classic attracts the biggest names in golf and is widely recognised with legends such as Seve Ballesteros and Jose Maria Olazabal having won the grand title and famous golfers such as Tiger Woods and Ernie Els playing and winning the course here. This has undoubtedly contributed to an increase in visitors, players, and sponsorship to promote golf in Dubai, with UAE now being home to six tour events.

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Emirates Golf Course – The Home of Golf in Dubai

Emirates Golf Course is at the top of its game, the scene of the world’s top tournaments, and golfers’ stellar choice for winter sun golf breaks. The Emirates Golf Club was the Middle East's first grass golf course, opening in 1988. However, its appeal extends far beyond being just a golfing destination. The venue is a premier destination for leisure, dining, and other sporting facilities such as pool, tennis courts, gym, and a brand-new spa.

The Golf Club features three immaculate courses with The Majlis, The Faldo, and the Par 3 academy, where players can choose from a variety of spaces, suitable for all skill sets.

The Majiis Course is by far the most popular and testing for golfers, due to its layout of natural rolling desert terrain and the salt and freshwater lakes that come into play across several holes.

The Majlis Course has received numerous awards throughout its 25-year history, one of which was Golf World magazine's 2012 ranking as one of the "Top 100 Golf Courses in the World" and the award for "Best Course Middle East" in the Asian Golf Monthly Awards 2010.

The Faldo Course, designed by English golfing great Nick Faldo, provides an excellent challenge to novices and expert players. With LED floodlights set around the course, it allows for games to be played during the day or at night.

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Golf in Dubai

Golf in Dubai is constantly evolving with the quality and diversity of the courses. Ranging from desert golf to mature parkland-style golf and beachfront golf, Dubai guarantees the ultimate golf tournament experience, with 12 courses leading the way. The city is also home to three of the world's Top 100 Golf Courses.

Whether you are an amateur or budding pro, golfing in Dubai is a test of vision, accuracy, and patience, and when combined with the amazing weather and the world-class courses, you have an entire golfing itinerary laid before your eyes, ready to take you to the next level.

In contrast to the striking desert landscape, Dubai’s golf courses are a true gem of vibrant greens and fairways, packed with emerald-coloured turf and best skyline views. The courses have been designed by the greatest names in the industry such as Colin Montgomerie, Sir Nick Faldo, and Ernie Els.

Dubai golf courses have been evaluated using the standard criteria of Design, Setting, Playability, Consistency, and Presentation and experts agree that they excel in each category.

With a cocktail of irresistible offerings such as vibrant culture, a range of luxury hotel resorts, beach clubs, shopping malls, and world-class restaurants, Dubai remains at the top of its game.