The Takeaway: Featuring a stout challenge and easy access to the heart of Sydney, The Lakes is a great club for city dwellers and for hosting large events. The front nine is sandy, the back nine is water laden, and the location echoes the sound of traffic throughout the round. The Lakes is one of the better courses in Sydney but doesn’t stack up to the impressive portfolio of courses in Melbourne. Grade B
Designer: Eric Apperly and Tom Howard in 1928/Robert von Hagge in 1968/Ogilvy and Clayton in 2007
Cost: Private $250 AUD - $400 AUD Click for membership information
Phone Number: +61 (02) 9669 1311
Course Website: Official Website - Visit The Lakes Golf Club's official website by clicking on the link provided.
Directions: Get here! - Cnr King St & Vernon Ave, Eastlakes, NSW 2018
Accolades: Ranked 18th in Australia by Golf Course Gurus
What to Expect: Located a few miles east of the Sydney airport and with quick southerly access from downtown, The Lakes enjoys convenient access for its members and visitors alike. Host of the Australian Open seven times and the Australian PGA Championship three times, The Lakes is a championship test with the tale of two nines. The front nine is heavily laden in sand with a single water hazard on the opening hole while the back nine features water on several holes and gives justification to club name; The Lakes. The extensive bunkering renovation that Ogilvy and Clayton did in 2007 helps make the front nine more compelling that the natural terrain lends and being accurate off the tee is absolutely critical considering how difficult recovery is from the sand. The front nine finishes with a par three, which is uncommon but not unheard of, but interestingly the back nine also finishes with a par three; a combination I’ve never seen. The more interesting back nine has some unique hole designs in terms of hazard placement where wisdom conquers valor when deciding how much to execute each shot. Ultimately, The Lakes feels more like a course you’d find in Florida than one you’d find in Australia given the mostly flat terrain, heavy use of sand, and numerous water features. The layout is more interesting than the Open course at Moonah Lakes that was built specifically to host the Australian Open, plus with its large facilities and proximity to Sydney, it is the perfect site for a large event. The heavy traffic surrounding the course, including a road that runs through it, takes away from the ambiance of the experience as the noise is a constant reminder that you haven’t retreated from everyday life. In addition, it was a bit surprising to see the lakes and bush areas not cleaned up better as rubbish was commonplace. Lastly, many players walk during their round at The Lake but carts are available as well.
By the Numbers
Individual Hole Analysis
Signature Hole: 14th Hole – 549 Yard Par 5
Best Par 3: 6th Hole – 175 Yards
Best Par 4: 16th Hole – 433 Yards
Best Par 5: 8th Hole – 550 Yards
Birdie Time: 13th Hole – 315 Yard Par 4
Bogey Beware: 3rd Hole – 486 Yard Par 4