Story & photos by Mike Besa
A couple of issues ago, we visited the newly minted Mimosa+ Leisure City. We marveled at the changes that Fininvest Land was making to the complex and lauded the management team there, led by General Manager Patrick Beck and Golf Director Erwin Vinluan, for bringing the Mountain course and, indeed, the Acacia Lakeview Course as well, back to playability. The club has added Andy Manson, an English superintendent to the brain trust running the club. Good things are happening there under the watch of these gentlemen and we expect yet more good things to come.
When a golf club as a golf course as tough as the Mountainview Course at Mimosa+, a second, slightly friendlier golf course is a must to keep the patrons happy. The Acacia Lakeview Course is the yin to the Mountain View’s yang; it is the golf course that people play when they’re not hell-bent on challenging themselves and their golf game. It’s the golf course that they play to enjoy the day with family or friends.
It isn’t a pushover by any means, but it is a golf course that won’t punish you unnecessarily. It’s significantly shorter than its sibling but makes up for it in beauty and playability. It’s far more accessible to the greater percentage of the golf population. If you’re playing well, it’s a good golf course to be on.
The Acacia Lakeview is fashioned on the bones of the original Clark Field Golf Club. This is the golf course that my parents and their friends used to go to great lengths to obtain invitations from their contacts in the US military, to obtain access to the base, the golf course and, perhaps, a sneak visit to the base postal exchange.
The Acacia side of the golf course shares real estate with the Mountainview’s outward nine. The scenery is familiar, but the holes are shorter and more accessible. No undue stress about reaching the greens in regulation, but you’ll still need to deal with the tricky greens to score.
The fourth is a strong hole on this side. The second shot asks much of the golfer; the undulating green is tough to read. The seventh is the Acacia’s best hole. The pressure on this hole comes on the shot into the green. Hit the right quadrant of the green and the hole opens up for you. Miss it at your peril.
It isn’t until you get to the Lakeview nine that the scenery takes on an identity of its own. The aesthetics here are markedly different from the other three on the property. The nine starts out benignly enough but comes into its own by the third hole on this side. The course opens up on here with a beautiful sweeping dogleg to the right, the tee shot to the elevated green isn’t as easy as the opening holes may have led you to believe. It isn’t long at just 349 yards from the tips but that doesn’t diminish the pleasure one gets from playing it.
The fourth hole (13 on the card) is a massive 204-yard par 3 (167 yards from the blue tees). It’s a strong par 3 that would be at home on any golf course in the country.
The fifth is a 558-yard par 5. Birdie here isn’t a given by any means. A drive that doesn’t find the fairway will have you scrambling just to make par. The green has significant undulations, making finding the correct part of the putting surface critical to score.
The seventh hole of the Lakeview nine is the side’s piece de resistance. Measuring just 489 yards from the gold tees, it is far from easy. Two lakes guard the entire left side of the hole from tee to green making going for the green, into a risky proposition for even the hardiest of constitutions. That its beauty is a match for the pleasure you get from playing it makes for an exceptional hole of golf.
The only bad thing one can say about the Acacia Lakeview course is how tough its been to get a tee time. The Korean tourist market has known about Mimosa for some time now and continue to play it in droves. We teed off after breakfast and were lucky to even finish the round. Such was the volume of golfers on the course. During the peak of our dry season, expect this problem to go away together with the droves of tourists.
As noted in our article on the Mountainview course, Filinvest is planning a comprehensive overhaul of the golf course to deal with drainage and issues with the sprinkler system. It is vital that any work done to the golf course doesn’t affect its character and intrinsic appeal. Mimosa Golf Club has long been a fixture in Philippine golf largely due to the beauty and character of both golf courses.
We feel this phase of Mimosa’s rich history is in able hands of men that understand the value of the golf course and will do everything in their power to take the Mimosa Golf Club to new heights. We look forward to enjoying the fruits of their labor.
More power, gentlemen.