The Takeaway: Not as stunning as the coastal courses, Iberostar Bavaro is an inland course with tons of movement in the terrain and is highlighted by an island green shaped like the club's logo. Guests enjoy all you can eat and drink from the beverage cart on the course. Grade B-
Designer: P.B. Dye in 2009
Cost: $129 - $165
Phone Number: 849-624-4526
Course Website: Official Website - Visit Iberostar Bavaro Golf Club's official website by clicking on the link provided.
Directions: Get here! - Playa Bavaro, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic – DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
What to Expect: PB Dye, the youngest son of Pete and Alice, designed Iberostar Bavaro on the east side of the Dominican Republic in the resort town of Punta Cana. Though it is located less than a half mile from the Caribbean Sea, saltwater doesn't come into view on this hilly layout that features dense foliages and trees around the perimeter of the property and keep the vistas within the confounds of the course. Over 100 bunkers are scattered throughout the routing, none more memorable than greenside on the 3rd hole where the sand sits in the base of a cave. Unusual? For sure. Memorable? Without question. But isn't that the mantra of the Dye's? PB proves that with the signature hole which is unlike any other you've ever seen; an island green surrounded by sand and shaped like the Iberostar Bavaro starfish logo. The original terrain at the property was relatively flat but it is clear that Dye moved tons of dirt in an effort to create several features throughout the course and always around the green. The par threes are the highlight of the course with each one providing a memorable design while the par fives and conditioning I would put in the average category. As is the theme with many of the resorts in the DR, the food and beverages on the course are all inclusive and you can count on seeing the snack/beverage cart stopping in every 4-5 holes. In the end, Iberostar Bavaro is a solid track that has been enhanced through a lot of earth moving. The course isn't enough to bring people to the DR to play it, that is reserved for Punta Espada and Teeth of the Dog, but if you are staying at the Iberostar you'll want to bust out your clubs for a round.
By the Numbers
Individual Hole Analysis
Signature Hole: 8th Hole – 187 Yard Par 3 – One of the most unique signature holes in golf, the Iberostar Bavaro starfish logo is surrounded by sand to create a virtual island green. In addition to the desert material to deal with, a pond is found left of the green and can quickly drown balls that sail that direction. With nowhere to hide on this hole, a green in regulation is nearly mandatory to walk off with a par.
Best Par 3: 11th Hole – 210 Yards – The first par three on the back is a one-shotter over the water to a green with a trio of bunkers that go across the front. The distinct tier in the green can be used as a backstop to work balls back towards pins found in the front third but can be a bear to navigate when you get on the wrong shelf.
Best Par 4: 18th Hole – 399 Yards – The final hole at Iberostar Bavaro plays three feet under 400 yards and features a steep bank on the left side. With tee balls getting kicked to the right it makes approach shots a bit more perilous with the green creating a peninsula on the right side. A birdie here will put a well deserved smile on your face.
Best Par 5: 13th Hole – 487 Yards – The 13th is a good scoring opportunity if you don't play it foolishly. The tee shot features enough room to comfortably select driver off the tee and then the strategy comes into play on the approach shot. The raised green features a pot bunker on the left while the right slide slopes hard towards a long, skinny bunker that stretches over 125 yards and stands as the last barrier before falling into a pond. If you are feeling confident with your longer irons you can attack this green in two, but if you need to dial back and lay it up then there is plenty of room on the left side to work with.
Birdie Time: 16th Hole – 146 Yard Par 3 – The par threes are the highlight at Iberostar Bavaro and the final one is a beauty for sure. The green is fronted by a stone retaining wall with a small bunker between it and the putting surface while two more bunkers rest beyond the green. When the hole placement is on the right side it will require more carry to find safety, so a cut shot that starts at the left side is the ideal safe play.
Bogey Beware: 4th Hole – 439 Yard Par 4 – The 4th doglegs left around a thick tree line while a series of bunkers sit on the right side of the fairway. The uphill approach will test players as the sharp falloff in front and on the left side will make saving par a real bear. But taking too much club and falling off the back to the pot bunker waiting there can be even more perilous of a fate.
Recommended AccommodationsThe Sanctuary at Los Corales - Located within the gated Los Corales Beach Village development in Punta Cana, The Sanctuary features a high-end condo experience you aren't soon to forget. With six condos to pick from ranging from the convenient ground floor units to the luxurious penthouse offering on the top floor, patrons are spoiled with kitchens that feature stainless steel appliances, elegant flooring, granite countertops, and contemporary cabinetry. From the balcony of the penthouse suites you can soak in the views of the surrounding palm trees that pair with the lovely weather to create a wonderful setting to relax and enjoy. Inside your condo, ceiling fans pair with the high efficiency air conditioning system to keep you at perfect comfort while flat screen TVs with an array of channels deliver endless entertainment options. Speaking of entertainment, The Sanctuary is located within walking distance of white sand beaches, shopping, and a wide variety of restaurants. Most importantly, The Sanctuary is centrally located for accessing Punta Cana's world class golf courses. A quick drive to the south takes you to the famed Corales Golf Course at Puntacana Resort where the PGA Tour visits every March and pairs with its sister course, La Cana, with coastal holes and an island green. 20 minutes to the north will get you to Iberostar Bavaro, Hard Rock at Cana Bay, and Punta Blanca Golf Courses where your all-inclusive experience delivers all the golf, sandwiches, and drinks your heart desires.
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